Having a super-duper follow-up system in place is a critical, if not the critical, system you need to grow and build your business.
Let me ask you…
When you have a client consultation and you ask the client to work with you, and they say something like:
I need to think about it;
Can I get back to you?
What system do you have in place to follow-up with them and turn them into a paying client?
This is where you need a super-duper follow-up system in place so that you can continue to connect with them and, when they’re ready to purchase, you’re top of mind. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a consultation with a potential client for them not to say yes right away. But when I’ve stayed in touch with them and regularly followed up with them, when they were ready to purchase they became a client. Sometimes this process takes a week or two, sometimes several weeks, and sometimes several months.
So it’s really important that you have a system in place so that you can stay in touch with both potential clients and past clients. Here are my top 5 strategies for creating your follow-up system.
1. System that you use. There are many CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems available, from using Outlook to using a dedicated CRM system such as Salesforce or AddressTwo. Choose the one that’s right for you. I’ve tried several over the years and have finally settled on Salesforce. I like it because I can customize it to my exact needs, making it easy for me to use. And, most importantly, because it’s easy for me to use, it’s easy for me to keep up-to-date. So find a system that is right for YOU and YOUR business.
2. Categorize each contact. Every contact you add to your contact management database needs to have a category so that you can easily find particular groups of clients. I categorize my contacts by where they are in the sales cycle process, and as they move through the sales cycle I will re-assign them a category accordingly.
3. Create simple templates. As I’ve discovered over the years, templates are a huge timesaver! So it’s important that the contact management system you use has a template feature. I’ve used a couple where it wasn’t possible to do this and, for that reason, I’ve looked for another system. Templates can be used for quick check-ins, missed calls/appointments, informing of new programs, or providing updates in your business. It’s great to have a library of templates created and ready to go, which makes doing your follow-up really quick and simple.
4. Utilize the tasks feature. This is a HUGE one for me! I need a system that allows me to add a particular activity or task for a client, let me assign a date it needs to be done by, and then pop up and alert me when that task is due. If I didn’t have this feature, then quite simply I’d forget to connect with the client.
5. Update it regularly. So now you’ve got this super-duper contact management system in place, it won’t be worth a hill of beans unless you keep it updated regularly. You may choose to update your system at the end of each day or on set days of the week. For me, Tuesday and Wednesday mornings are my follow-up focus time. This is when I connect with clients, and update my system.
Now that you’ve got some simple strategies for creating your follow-up system, and you know how critical this system is to your bottom line, what tweaks are you going to do to improve your follow-up system? Follow these five steps above, and you’ll soon see an increase in getting more clients, and therefore increasing your profits.