In B2B selling, there are conflicting reports about how many times you need to metaphorically touch a prospect before they buy from you, so whether it’s 5, 7 or something else, it’s likely more than just the first or second interaction you have with them.
People like to buy from people they like, know and trust and you can speed up the relationship building part with extra touch points and adding your own personality where possible. Not many people do it, so stand out and make it work for you.
Have a look at these points and see if you can introduce any into your process:
- Make your initial contact via telephone or in person to arrange a meeting rather than email.
- Send a personalized calendar invite to confirm your meeting.
- Attend your actual first meeting.
- Leave a brief hand written card with their assistant to be delivered when you leave, thanking them for their time today.
- Send a follow up email to confirm your next steps or include your proposal.
- Send a personalized LinkedIn connection request if you connected well.
- Telephone and arrange your next appointment to discus your proposal or to follow up on a decision.
- Follow them on Twitter or become a fan of their Facebook page, great intel for further meetings.
- Attend your follow up meeting.
- Thank them and confirm your deal in writing via email.
- Send a personalized hand written card thanking them for their business.
- Call either in person or telephone after you have shipped to check they are happy with what they purchased.
If their decision was a “no”, why not still send a hand written card wishing them luck with their chosen provider?
It is worth mentioning here that if you add in a little of your personality at each point, such as a friendly personal message in your calendar invite, you really will start to build a relationship with them quite quickly which can only be a good thing.
Compare these steps with what you are currently doing now. I am guessing, but I would imagine that in many cases, points 2,4,6,8,11 and 12 would be missed out.
Of course once your prospect has bought from you, there are many more times that your customer is then touched with personal communication from you, others staff members involvement, head office interaction, marketing and so on, and if you have done and continue to do a great job delivering in all of these different areas, the word of mouth advertising from your new customer will come.
For comments: What extra points do you do we can add to the list?
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Authored by Linda Coles