You must have an unreasonable attitude with follow up. Most people don’t quite get what I mean when I say “unreasonable.” Unreasonable means without reason. Keep pushing because you believe in your product, in your company and your service.
I’ll be unreasonable even if you don’t like me calling you on a Thursday afternoon after I’ve already called you 10 times, texted you four times and sent two handwritten letters. I’m going to be unreasonable. I get this all the time, “Grant, don’t call me again.” I say “OK, you got it, it won’t happen again.” but the next day I’m going to find a reason to follow them up.
You think this is crazy? It’s because you are reasonable.
If you are not unreasonable, you are sold not to do your job. My job is to take care of my family, my business and myself.
That requires me to be unreasonable. If someone attacked you with a gun, would you be unreasonable or would you make sense of that gun? If a bomb went off in your building, you would be unreasonable and do whatever it takes to protect yourself, your business and your family.
Figure out a creative way to follow up. Creativity follows commitment. Your commitment must be so unreasonable that you keep popping up with ideas on how to follow up even long after a client has said not to call again. I called a guy 15 times in three days, five times each day. He didn’t call me back once. The definition of follow-up is seeing something through — all the way through. Should I call 15 times and quit? That’s what you do. The average salesperson calls back twice and bails. Don’t be that guy. Follow up until one of you dies.
Before we dated, it took me 13 months to get my future wife to go out with me. I told her later it’s not stalking if it works. You need to become an all-star at following up with your customers. Here are some advanced strategies you can employ:
1. I saw this and thought of you.
I love this follow-up. It could be a piece of mail, a text, an email or even a mention in a tweet. This is a great one when reading an interesting article, blog or post. The only reason I read the news is to use that information to follow up my customers. I tune into Business Insider, CNN, CNBC, Fox, any station, in order to follow people up. If I go to an exhibition or trade show, I’m collecting data there. I want to follow people up with links and ideas, and a great way to do that is, “I saw this car” or “I saw this product” or “I saw this book” and I “thought of you”.
I ask, “Do you like to read? If you do, I’d like to send it to you.” Notice that I didn’t send the person the book, I took a picture of the book. I didn’t invest in the book yet. If he says yes, he likes books, then I can send it. It’s simple, easy and effective.
2. Personalized singing email.
This is the client you’ve been following up for six, seven, maybe eight months. You need to pull out all the stops here. If you don’t think it’s professional, let me tell you what’s not professional — not doing whatever it takes to earn their business. Pull out all the stops, be memorable and stay at the front of their mind.
3. Lottery ticket.
The next time you are at the gas station or grocery store pick up some lottery tickets for your clients. Say, “I’m pulling for you when you win the $400 million that I just invested for you, I don’t ask you to give me any of it, just do business with me.”
4. Chocolate feet.
Try ordering a big chocolate foot for your client if you can’t get your foot in the door. If you just can’t get in front of him, send this with a note asking to get a foot in the door because you know you can earn his business.
5. Show them on a magazine.
Everyone wants to be on the front of a magazine, so Photoshop their image on GQ, Fortune — any major recognized name — with them on the cover. It’s a smart way to get back in front of a client. If you don’t have the technical skills to do it yourself, you can easily google search and pay a small price for someone to do it for you.
6. Purchase prepaid cell phone.
For the hard-to-get client that you’ve been trying to get the last six or seven months that will not return your phone calls, go to the local phone store — AT&T, Sprint, whoever you use — and purchase a prepaid cell phone. Mail it to the client with a note telling them when you will be calling them on this phone on a specific day, at a specific time, because you have some very important information to share with them.
7. Giant cookie.
A guy I knew used to do this all the time. “I want to take a bite out of your business.” Send your client a giant cookie with a note like that. It could be a thank you for a new client you just got, it’s just a creative way to stay in front of someone. You don’t have to do the cookie, but the point is to do something creative.
I’m going retro, bringing back the 30’s to the 21st century. Before you discount this like everyone has around me, people use telegrams every day. You can have a telegram sent to your client and it will be the first telegram they’ve ever received. The only time they’ve seen it is when they have watched black-and-white movies from World War II. Try the telegram.
When using all of these strategies on a client, you can also add this phrase:
“Obviously, John, you can see how hard I am working to get your business and I’m going to continue to do so. Just think about how hard I will work to keep your business.”
Add that to any of the above strategies and see what happens.
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