Two main reasons exist as to why you may be losing opportunities in your sales funnel:
1. The lack of timely follow-up
2. Not remembering you are to check back in with your prospective client
As a former salesperson who began in the profession before the internet or the idea of CRM came into being, I whole-heartedly welcomed the software announcement. The comparison of before and after is ‘light-years apart.’
In the early years, we were instructed to knock on, at a minimum, fifty doors per day. My personal goal was to collect sixty business cards each day to ensure a healthy pipeline. Late afternoon, the team would return to the office with stacks of cards. I prioritized mine according to date for callbacks, others just let their cards sit in tall stacks.
The worst occurrence was when cards fell to the floor. The janitorial staff tasked with cleaning, would pick up the fallen business cards and put them in the wastebaskets that were later dumped into the trash outside. Many opportunities in the sales funnel were lost.
It was with delight that I learned how to enter contact information into a database and include the date for reconnecting. I checked the system every morning. I become very efficient in follow-up.
And connecting on a human level took the process to the next level. As a prospect answered the phone, and after saying ‘hello,’ I would remind each person that they asked me to call on that day and time. The statement was quickly followed with the question, ‘does now still work for you?’ The answer of ‘yes’ always gave me the green light to ask for a meeting.
Still using humor, years later, those prospects telling me to call back were forewarned that I excel in follow-up. I then asked again if they wanted me to do so. It was always a unanimous ‘yes.’
Advantages of habitually using a CRM database include:
- No need to worry about forgetting to follow-up
- Being timely on the next contact
- Establishing credibility and trust by follow-up as promised
- Increasing the number of meetings plus the size of sales
- Maintaining a robust sales pipeline and routinely making quota
- The bonus is being able to over-achieve monthly quota and become a star producer.
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