Forget marketing - just do some follow up!

I was having a great conversation with one of my friendly competitors today about follow up.  A simple, basic skill everyone in sales must have to be successful.  

We came to the consensus that people who complain about business being down are the same people who fail to follow up.

I am amazed at what people will spend to go to sales training, “marketing” seminars or trying newfangled marketing "strategies", but when the phone rings, or they get website inquiries, they fall down on follow up and customer service.

Here are a few examples:

  • A business owner was doing speaking engagements to promote herself as an expert in her industry.  At the end of each engagement, she had attendees fill out a simple form to see if they were interested in her services or if they knew of someone who may need her services.  She came to me and showed me a two inch stack of forms of people who expressed interest in her service.  The forms had been collected over almost a year’s time period.  She asked me what she should do with them.  I asked, “Did you call them?”  She responded with a “No.”  I thought to myself – what a waste.  I encouraged her to call on these individuals, despite the time that had passed on some of them.  When I checked back a couple weeks later, she still had not made any effort to call them.  I checked back another time and she had still not done any follow up.  I even encouraged her to hire someone to do the calls for her, but instead she chose to do nothing and continued to complain about how business was down.  Rather she chose to sign up for every newfangled marketing seminar there was to try to figure out how to grow her business. 
  • Recently, I called a music instructor to inquire about private guitar lessons for my son.  In this economy, sending your child to private lessons is not a necessity of life, and I would suspect business is a little slow.  After all, there are semi-private lessons that are less expensive.  I left a detailed message and never received a call back.
  • This Monday, I made a call to a contractor to do some work in our home.  Here is it four days later and no call back. 
  • In December, I needed my refrigerator fixed.  This appliance/HVAC company came to my house to provide an estimate.  I gave them the OK to do the work.  He ordered the part.  He fell down on follow-up and has never been back to fix my refrigerator.  Now he has lost more than just a small refrigerator job, but also a much larger job he said he would quote me for a new furnace!

What has happened to the simple basics?  Good customer service and follow up All these niche marketing providers are out there trying to sell their latest marketing "strategy" and billing it as the new way required to get sales.  It just amazes me that no one is teaching people to simply do the basics.  Is it because the basics aren't necessarily desired or fun?  Seems to me if you have an interested prospect, you want to follow up on it ASAP.

CreativeXchange Marketing believes that providing exceptional customer service is the key to building and fostering great relationships that will last.  For more information on our customer service training programscontact us today, or click here for more information.


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