How to Follow-Up After a Sales Meeting
Landing an elusive sales meeting is only half the battle. The real work starts after the handshakes and the business card exchanges are over. You’ve taken advantage of your opportunity to build rapport with your prospect, and now it’s time to take the trust you’ve built from your face-to-face meeting and turn it into a closed sale and long-term business relationship. Here are some tips to help you with your sales meeting follow up effectively and prevent your sales numbers from taking a hit.
Following up after a Prospect Meeting
The first step after a prospect meeting is to draft a personalized follow-up email. Spend time reviewing your meeting notes and tailor your message specifically to your prospect and your conversation with them. Make sure you follow a few key steps as your draft your email.
- Send it within 24 hours of your meeting
- Make sure the subject line is personalized and will cause them to click
- Offer them a piece of free content or a link to information they’ll find useful
- Summarize what you talked about and next steps
Once you’ve created a couple of great follow-up emails, save your template for future emails to save yourself some time to ensure that each email follows a prescription that works.
Don’t be discouraged if you don’t hear back from the prospect the first time. Have a second follow-up email queued up and ready to follow-up after no response within a few days. Sales are not for the faint of heart—it takes persistence and the ability to not take unresponsiveness personally. As you continue to reach out, there are a few things that can help grab the attention of your prospect.
- Use your CRM to capture when and what you’ve already sent to your prospect
- Follow them (and engage with them) on social media
- Add them to any relevant nurture campaigns
- Offer some more free content or information as a show of good will and your genuine interest in solving their problem
- Don’t rely strictly on your emails. Strategically placing calls demonstrates real interest and that you are indeed a person.
Following up with Current Customers
Meetings and engagement don’t stop after you close the deal with a prospect. Customer engagement is more important than ever for retention, brand awareness, advocacy programs, cross-selling and upselling. After a customer meeting, you should follow a slightly different pattern for follow-up activities.
Much like you would for a prospect, craft a personalized, valuable follow-up email outlining your customer’s needs, what you discussed and how you can help. Don’t be afraid to use data related to business outcomes your customer has achieved as a result of their partnership with you.
- Put your CRM to good use. With existing customers, it is vital for your entire organization to have visibility into the conversations you’ve had, references they’ve provided for prospects, and any marketing activities in which your customer is willing to participate. By capturing your meeting notes in your CRM, you’ll be sure that others in your organization aren’t tapping your customer too frequently and that you’re keeping your promises to them.
- Be consistent with your follow up after meeting with your customer. Don’t take advantage of your current relationship and the level of trust you’ve built with your customer. They will still expect you to communicate when you say you will and deliver what you’ve promised.
With both prospect and customer follow-up, the best course of action is to focus on the long-term goal. Sales cycles and customer expectations are fluid, and with careful attention to detail, you can adjust your messaging and turn your sales meeting into a sale.