We have all heard the phrase “the fortune is in the follow up” but are you guilty as charged of neglecting leads and botching the follow up? For many businesses, following up with potential customers and clients is the one of the most important business actions that a business can do.
Lead generation is an important step in the sales process, but the investment you put into gaining those leads is useless unless you close them. For most leads, the ability to close depends upon how quickly you follow up on that lead.
Speed is of the essence when following up with leads, and chances are you’re either fast enough, or way, way too slow. According to the Harvard Business Review:
- 26% of companies respond within five minutes of an inquiry
- 27% of companies respond between five minutes and 24 hours of an inquiry
- A whopping 47% respond after 24 hours or don’t respond at all to an inquiry
We see this all too often especially in the real estate market. In slow months, your team may have trouble scraping together enough leads to go around. In more frantic months, however, many leads aren’t opened up.
We even see that happening with some of our own customers. They get so busy that we sometimes get follow up calls from potential customers who are concerned that no one followed up with them. Regrettably, a willingness to put off responding to a lead is the first nail in the coffin of your future relationship with the lead. When you have leads that come from a lead service it is even more important to follow up. Don’t forget, your competitors are receiving the same exact lead. That means that a lead may show up ready to be sold, and instead of seizing the opportunity your competitor sweeps in and grabs the glory – and the money. This is why it’s so important to not just respond to leads but to respond within minutes of first establishing contact.
Research shows that it takes at least five ongoing follow-up efforts after the original sales contact before a customer will say yes. FIVE! Nearly 80% (yes, 80!) of all sales are made on the fifth through the twelfth contact! Does it make you wish you had been engaging in an ongoing dialogue with your leads with a bit more gusto?
Central Comm at your service.