Home' Inclean : INCLEAN Jan-Feb 2016 Contents 42 INCLEAN January/February 2016
favorites, ‘we just focus on the hot leads’.
However, the root of the problem is
not staffing or time or any of the other
excuses, it’s that they just don’t know
how to do effective follow up – so their
unconverted leads fall through the cracks.
And I tell them, an undisturbed prospect
will rarely become a client.
The rules of marketing have changed.
It’s no longer enough to just have a
conversation with a prospect, drop off a
quote and expect to make the sale. That’s
old school and explains why many cleaning
companies that rely on the old method are
struggling to grow.
In order to stand out in the crowded
marketplace and get ahead of your
competition, you have to be a master at
building relationships with your prospects.
So what does that actually mean? It
means staying in touch with each prospect
• Multi-channeled (using direct mail, text,
email, phone calls, etc.)
• Strategically crafted to build trust
Cleaning business owners who aren’t
implementing solid follow up and trust-
building systems are growing stagnant and
dying because customers expect more these
days; much more.
Check out these cold hard facts:
• 2% of prospects close on the first call
• 3% of prospects close on the second call
• 4% of prospects close on the third call
• 10% of prospects close on the fourth call
• 81% of prospects lose on (or after) the
So when do most companies stop
• 48% of businesses quit after the first call
• 24% of businesses quit after the second call
• 12% of businesses quit after the third call
• 6% of businesses quit after the fourth call
• 10% of businesses quit it after the fifth call
Bottom line: your prospects need to
hear from you between seven to 13 times
before they are ready to buy and this
communication must be useful and strategic
What is a good follow
A good follow up system should have three
• The follow up process is done the same
way every time.
• It should generate consistent, predictable
• It should have the objective of educating
and building trust with your prospects and
When to follow up
You definitely can (and should) always
follow up to close a new prospect, but what
about all the prospects who say ‘no’ to you
– what happens to them?
In the cleaning industry we are all too
aware that there will always be some guy
with a mop, bucket and a vacuum cleaner
ready to do the job for less than you – and
sometimes they will get lucky and win one
of your clients away from you.
Do you just leave it at that and go and
spend a fortune trying to find another
This is a classic example of where a good
follow up system can win back lost clients.
If the mop and bucket guy is unreliable
and does a lousy job and you’re keeping in
touch, guess who they’ll get back in when
they’re sick of him? You; but only if you
followed up properly. Think this couldn’t
be true? I can tell you that approximately
15 percent of lost business can be won
back inside of 12 months if you know what
Here’s another situation. What about when
a client comes on board with you? After the
initial welcoming calls and/or emails, do you
do any follow up with them and offer them
more, do you offer them upsells and cross-
sells? If you’re not doing this, again, you’re
leaving money on the table.
You see, follow up is a very useful tool
– both for winning business, and growing
your existing business. Imagine if you just
followed up more (and you did it correctly
and not in a creepy over-the-top, stalker-ish
kind of way), how much more profitable
your cleaning business would be?
Are yu thinking this would be too much
work for you? Once you have the right
system in place to handle this, it just
happens – automatically, and no-one slips
through the cracks.
What should be included
in your follow up?
There should be a strategic combination
of calls, emails, lumpy mail and text
messaging in every follow up system,
including carefully crafted messaging that
nurtures prospects, establishes trust, builds
relationship and drives them to purchase.
For example, putting in the email subject
line “Hi prospect’s name, just following
up on my quote” will not get your email
opened 95 percent of the time. Look at the
email subject line as the key that moves
your prospect to actually open and read
your email. So, you could use “oops, I
forgot to mention”, or “I hope they’re not
mad” or “Don’t get shut out... again!” or
the “Good News...”. There’s a myriad of
others depending on where you’re up to in
the sales process.
Direct mail is one of my favorite ways
of staying in touch because these days,
not many people think to use it, but it’s
so effective. When was the last time you
received a personally addressed package on
your desk and didn’t open it?
And that’s the point. It will be opened,
looked at and read – all by the person you
sent it to, and that creates another strong
connection. See where I’m going with this?
It’s all about adding value instead of taking
up space in your prospects’ or clients’ lives.
You do the same with phone calls. NEVER
call without knowing what you’re going to
say, and without an objective in mind.
Would you like to know more?
Following up with systematic processes
allows you to leverage your salespeople’s
time and enhance their productivity, so
you can make more sales with less effort
and isn’t that what you want? Start
winning more sales today by implementing
your own follow-up marketing system.
If you’re not sure where to start, you
can download a free power follow up
planning checklist at
*Lisa Macqueen is a small business
“The new rules
are all about
prospect will rarely
become a client
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