Peady’s Selling Engagement sponsored by IRD Prospector
Welcome to this week’s post on sales and selling success.
Ever sent an email that starts with “I’m just following up….” or “I’m just checking on….”? or “I’m just touching base….”?
Ever thought about why it doesn’t work all that well? Or how ineffective this approach really is?
Many sales people believe that inserting “just” softens the ‘follow up’ angle however it actually makes the message sound weaker. ‘Checking on’ sounds even weaker!
“Just following up, just checking on or just touching base” emails can make you feel like you’re moving the sale forward, you aren’t. They make you feel good but quite likely they are irritating and aggravating your prospects. And these emails are keeping you stuck in follow-up hell.
Is it time to stop pestering and start prompting real conversations and interactions?
The best athletes constantly practice, improve, and refine their strategy, successful salespeople do exactly the same. They are always experimenting with existing techniques and trying out new ones. After all, the second an athlete or salesperson stops striving, they backslide.
A different plan
Do you want to differentiate yourself and stand out?
When contacting a prospect or customer to move the sale along you don’t want to sound contrived, you want to look and sound different. You want to seem natural, relaxed – push too hard and the customer will quickly pick up a sense of desperation.
Have a specific purpose for the email (or the phone call). In today’s super-busy, fast-paced world of constant intrusions, you can’t afford to interrupt prospects without providing some value, benefit or compelling reason for them to keep the conversation going.Try these opening lines:
- “I’m not sure if you know about…”
- “Since we last spoke something came up you’ll be interested in”
- “Yesterday your name came up in conversation with….”
- “You might need to relook at the proposal due to the latest (industry news, economic conditions, competitor activity etc)
- “I was thinking about you (your business) and wanted to ask two questions”
- “Last week’s (events, news) might have an impact on the planning we discussed”
You’ll soon find out which ones are effective and resonate because your emails will be replied to and your phone calls returned.
What have you got to lose?
Until next time good selling!
About the author
Stephen Pead is a media industry veteran of 30 years with significant experience in direct sales, sales management and general management. He is based in Sydney and specialises in helping SME’s market their businesses more effectively and providing training for salespeople and sales managers.
He can be contacted at [email protected]