New Business Development

By admin / April 7, 2008
By: Sheila Mulrennan
Category: Coaching

Professional Sales Training should ensure that salespeople are aware of the importance of follow up marketing. Sales training courses should emphasise a systemic approach to business development.

It's fact that over half of all sales occur on or after the fifth contract. If you're only doing one or two follow-up, consider all the business you're losing. Failing to follow up on your sales prospects is about as productive as filling a shopping bag with a hole in it!

Consistent follow-up creates a predictable and profitable stream of sales prospects, businesses that do so experience higher conversion rates and a higher percentage of sales referrals than those who don't. Most businesses that fail to follow up on potential sales claim they do not have the manpower to do so. If proper systems are set in place this problem can be easily rectified. A good follow up selling system should have three attributes:

· It should be systematic

· It should generate predictable, consistent results.

· It should be able to run on autopilot

To most, this idea seems too good to be true yet with modern technology it's actually quite simple. Automating your follow-up processes gives you more time to work "on" your business rather than "in" your business. The secret to success is the last point, that it works with as little physical interaction as possible.

There are three types of people you should aim to follow up on:

· Those in your target market

· Those who have responded to marketing, but are yet to purchase,

· And those who have already purchased

Follow up messages will differ slightly, depending on who they are aimed at. Existing and satisfied customers will obviously be easier to follow up on then those who are merely in your target market as you already have their contact information, and may even know them personally.

The key tools you'll need for follow up selling are the telephone, email and post. Many companies come off a little pushy by jumping straight on the phone pressuring those who have responded to marketing into making a purchase. However this can actually push prospective buyers away, as most are apprehensive of pushy telesales people. A better idea is to try building a relationship with the prospective buyer by promptly sending them information via email or post.

People tend to move slowly through the purchasing process, your aim should be entice them to take the next step as opposed to pushing them.

Always link each follow up by using a sequence, each attempt of communication should build on the previous. This lets the prospective customer know that you as a salesperson care enough about their business to continue correspondence. For instance you could include; "you may have received a letter from us 10 days ago...'

Putting your Follow-Up Selling System on Auto-Pilot

The key to this practice is to ensure there is very little, if any, physical interactions between employees and the system. To do this it must be automated as much as possible. To automate your follow-ups you should consider using robotic marketing systems and outsourcing any manual interactions to a dedicated service.

For example, to secure your leads you should contemplate using a toll-free automated recorded message system that captures your potential customers contact information and automatically copies it and sends your leads to you in a spreadsheet every morning through email.

The best idea, however, is to use a postal follow up system. If you opt for this method it is a good idea to use a fulfilment house to do the mailings for you. Details of a fulfilment house in your area will be available from your local printer. You can then have your leads automatically sent to your fulfilment house, via email, meaning there is very little physical involvement needed at all. The same can be done through an autoresponder email account.

Now your potential clients are aware that you are interested in their custom, and have all the information needed on the products you have to offer. You have equipped them with information on how you're different and what your value proposition is, so this is the time to call.

Follow-up marketing will boost your sales closing rate and dramatically increase your customer satisfaction. You have already coaxed potential customers into doing business with you, now all that is left is a phone call to seal the deal.



Sheila Mulrennan from Professionaldevelopment.ie specialises in writing articles relating to Personal Development Training, Communication Skills, Prfesentation Skills and SALES TRAINING. Visit her website at www.Professionaldevelopment.ie for more.



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