Marketing, busy filling the sales lead buckets, are always telling you to hold on to those precious leads longer and not toss them out too quickly. How many times should you follow up on closing out sales leads with an unresponsive lead before closing it out?
The answer depends on the types of leads you receive, the length of the sales cycle, the qualification criteria, and — most important — your outreach methods and communications mediums.
Some suggest 4 attempts, while others are at 8 attempts. Regardless of the formula, here are some recommendations for getting response:
1. Go beyond Generic Emails: Take the time to individually design email templates that reflect a progression and build on one another. The 1st attempt email should not look like the 3rd attempt email. Your communications should always be building or adding something onto your previous attempts. Repetition never takes the prospect on a journey or makes them feel engaged.
2. Vary Your Communications Medium: Take all the communications mediums that exist today and mix them up. For example, you might make the 1st attempt voice mail and email together, while the 2nd attempt is email and LinkedIn, and the 3rd attempt is GoldMail video email. You never know which medium your prospect will be most responsive to at any moment, so track which you’ve used and keep it fresh.
3. Last Attempt Emails are Lucky: We are finding that last attempt emails are getting immediate response. Remember that stressed-out, crazy-busy Customer 2.0? Well, they are motivated by fear. Send a last attempt email that has a subject line such as, “Is [name of your company] on your radar?” or “Last call for [name of your company].” Then write something along these lines:
I’ve reached out to you several times in the past few weeks to discuss your content management strategies. I will close this opportunity out unless I hear otherwise from you. Thanks for your time.
Before you know it, they raise their hands and say “Wait! We are still interested! We just haven’t had time to review your offerings.”
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Josiane Feigon is author of Smart Sales Manager and the best-selling Smart Selling on the Phone and Online. She is a pioneer, maverick, and visionary in the inside sales community. A 20-year veteran of the industry, she is the founder of TeleSmart Communications. Since 1994, this San Francisco-based solutions provider has been a leader in developing inside sales teams and managers. Josiane is recognized among the Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals and as a leading expert on inside sales team and management talent. Her thought leadership blog is ranked in the Top 50 Sales blogs by SalesCrunch. Connect with her on Twitter and YouTube!