I am frequently asked this question by new team members. Whether they are acquired on or off-line, contacting your leads in a timely manner is vital to the growth and survival of your business. We all use different methods, but here I will be share the process I use when I receive leads. My methods are effective for me, but they may not be the best for everyone.
If you have been building your online presence through your website, ads, social media and blogs, you are generating leads from them. When those leads arrive, what should you do next?
Even if you only have a name and email address for the prospect, don’t wait to let them call you. Also don’t start sending out dozens of emails to them. Using autoresponders, you can send out several spread out over a month or so.
It is important to qualify your leads. There is a big difference between having a lot of leads and having a few who are well-qualified. My personal qualifying criteria may be different from those other people have, and I have only a few.
- Have they visited and reviewed at least one of my websites?
- Can and do they follow instructions?
- When you speak to them on the phone, are they pleasant? If they are rude or negative, I don’t want them on my team!
- I am seeking people with a positive attitude who have a vision of the future and know they can succeed with the business.
We can receive leads by email, via opt-ins from our websites, by phone, through a social media site or face to face.
When I receive a lead through an opt-in with no phone number, I don’t just let them receive autoresponders and wait. Autoresponders are great, but I don’t want to rely on them alone. Our prospects need to know that we are real people.
I allow prospects to receive 1 or 2 of the autoresponders. Then I look in my back office to see if they opened the autoresponders. How much time did they spend on my website? Once I’ve done that, I am armed with the information I need to write a PERSONAL email to let them know I’d be happy to answer their questions.
If someone opted-in from my website and left a phone number, I allow the prospect to receive one or two autoresponders before phoning them. I wait no longer than a couple days.
Before calling, I check my back office to look at the prospect’s activity. This knowledge helps me know what to say in the conversation with the lead. When I call, I identify myself and my company and tell them I received their inquiry about my business. Then I’ll say something like, “I wanted to follow up with you to see if you have any specific questions I can answer for you.” If they have questions, I simply answer them.
I’ll ask if they had an opportunity to explore my website. If not, I’ll tell them that nearly everything they want to know is addressed at my website. I’ll say lightheartedly, “My website explains it better than I can! So, why don’t you go to my site http://mywebsite, and give me a call afterward so we can go over questions you have then. Here’s my phone number….”
By sending them to the website, I am testing to see if the prospect follows instructions. If they don’t call me back, I may send them a follow-up email after a few days, but I do not call them again.
Since many leads phone us, we must be sure to answer the phone professionally at all times. Your two-year-old on your voice mail saying, “My mommy will call you back” is not professional.
No matter how you contact your prospect, be professional, but friendly, helpful, genuine, and reliable. Even if your lead never becomes a customer, they may recommend or refer you to others.