Recently, I attended a group meeting with other sales experts focused on sales growth and best practices. They suggested a simple challenge: see what happens when you pick three prospects that you haven’t spoken to in several months and reach out just to reconnect.
I was inspired to take this challenge to the next level. I went to my database and identified prospects that I hadn’t spoken with in the past several months. My outreach to these prospects packed my calendar with 30 appointments! Three of these prospects expressed an interest in discussing how I might be able to work with them in the near term.
How did this happen?
I believe three Critical Success Factors led to this result.
- First, it was easy for me to identify the prospects that I had not contacted in several months because I used a customer relationship management tool. It took little effort to identify these individuals.
- Second, when I reached out, it was clear that my objective was to reconnect and not to sell. In reconnecting, we talked about the business environment and life in general. I don’t believe a hard-sell approach would have resulted in as many meetings.
- Third, I have always made it a point to conclude any discussions I have with prospects who aren’t able to use my services immediately on a positive note. This way, reaching out again in the future is not uncomfortable.
As a sales professional who has led and coached sales teams for years, I’ve observed that when we salespeople don’t close a prospect, we often move on, and don’t look back. But what this experiment demonstrates is the value of keeping in touch.
In a different discussion, I recently had a wonderful conversation with a colleague I hadn’t spoken to in a while. Ultimately, we agreed to keep in touch even if we only ‘ping’ each other on LinkedIn every few weeks. We both believe this will keep us ‘top of mind’ so that we’re more likely to refer to each other when the right opportunity presents itself.
These experiences reaffirm that maintaining connections with prospects (and colleagues) adds value to your business by making it less likely that you will miss opportunities by not being ‘top of mind’ for the services you provide.
At One of a Kind Sales, we love helping businesses grow their leads. We are experts at cold calling for appointment setting. If you need our services, please reach out to us at 908-879-2911.