7 Sales Follow up Mistakes to Avoid Getting Benched

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Prospects and leads keep the wheels of sales organization turning. They are the lifeblood of any sales team. But, getting a lead is just the first step of the long journey one need to travel to get the prospect converted to a client. For most organizations, it is an arduous task to get one more client added in the database. Thus, it is very important for organizations to have good sales reps that can follow up well.

Sales reps must also make sure that they approach the prospects in the right way and have enough control over their methods. Sales reps should be well aware of the fact that, they are the immediate point of contact for the prospects and their ways could determine the future and the longevity of the prospects’ interest in your offerings.

Below are the few of the Sales Follow up mistakes that Most Reps commit:
#1. Not following up quickly enough

As a sales rep, whose primary target is to generate a sale, it is obligatory to follow up quickly with the lead. Taking too much time with following up could result in loss of the prospect. It is majorly due to the fact that, your lead is definitely a lead for your competitor as well. It is hence important to know that the competitor is breathing down the neck. To add to this, sometimes the client may feel that you are least bothered about them given your lacklustre attitude with the follow up. This in itself is a negative advertisement for you and your organization.

#2. Leaving it up to the client

Another mistake that most sales rep commit is, leaving everything up to the client. Once you have the lead, make sure that you take ownership of further steps. For example, if you drop your client a message, try to add the following sentence: “If I haven’t heard back from you by ABC time and date, I would try and reach you again”. The usage of such sentence could lead to surprising results.  But, it is also important to be mindful of the fact that, you cannot dictate terms with the client. After all, they are the decision makers and you cannot impose yourself onto them.

#3. Being too defensive

While following up, it is a given that the clients would have many questions in mind.  As a sales rep it is important for you to answer, but at the same time make sure that, you do not over explain. Instead, you can look towards asking meaningful questions. An example for the same could be in the following conversation:

Client:  I like your offer, but it seems to me that it is very expensive.

Rather than giving them an explanation about the features you can ask them: “what makes you feel so”. This will set their mind rolling and you will have a greater control over the conversation

#4. Talking too much

It is imperative for a sales rep while following up, to listen to the customer. A lot many times a lead doesn’t get converted because rather than listening to the prospect you talk and only talk. One of the major objectives of the call should be to listen to the prospect and understand their problem and provide a solution to them through your product / service. If this doesn’t happen, you fail to build a feeling of trust among the prospects and end up not being able to form a long term association with them. At the end of the day, the solution matters and not the sales pitch  

#5. Being unprepared

Being prepared before a follow up call is the first in my to-do list.  As said earlier, a sales rep can expect many questions and point of views that could need some answering. The future of the relationship and your business totally depends on how and what you answer. It is thus, important for you to be prepared with what you want to speak and how to present it to the prospect. In short, it may not be a bad idea to design a script before you make a follow up call.

#6. Not building relationship

Most of the times a follow up call fail because the sales rep is not trying to build a healthy relation with the client. It may even seem to the client that the sales rep is just doing it because it is a part of their job .Therefore, it is important for a sales rep to know that, it is not selling alone, relationship building is also included. Regular communication allows you to spot up sell and cross-sell opportunities quickly.

#7. Opening statement mistakes

Here is where so many sales reps stumble and fall. Here some of the classic follow up opening statement blunders: 

  • “I was calling to follow up on the proposal.”
  • “I am calling to see if you had any questions.’
  • “I just wanted to make sure you got my e-mail.”
  • “The reason for my follow up was to see if you had come to a decision.”

As you may see, the above statements look mundane and lack interest.  It gives a negative impression at the first go itself and very seldom can create a positive frame of mind for the customers. 

As mentioned earlier, it is important for a sales rep to be mindful of the fact that you determine the method to be carried out while following up with the prospect. Usually, most rookies commit a slew of sales follow up mistakes that could result in immediate failure. 

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