Are You Missing Out on Sales Opportunities

Are you missing sales opportunitiesIf you could generate 20% more revenue without acquiring new customers, would you do it?  Of course, you would.  Yet many small businesses miss out on these sales opportunities because they fail to stay connected with current customers.

Studies have shown that about 25% of your customers will purchase from you again IF their first experience was good and you stay in touch.  So make sure you communicate with customers on a regular basis, ask for their valuable feedback and provide them with long-term value.

Whether you do it by phone, mail, email, or socially, make sure your customers know you are thinking of them.  The frequency may vary based on your business or industry, but quarterly contacts should be a minimum goal.

Simple, Easy Ways To Stay In Touch
  • Thank you and holiday cards are always a nice touch – especially when mailed!.  Want to stand out?  Replace your typical Christmas or Hanukkah card with a New Year card!
  • Call them for feedback about your business.  Prepare 2-3 questions and pick up the phone!
  • Drop in and say ‘hello’ when you are in the neighborhood. Leave your sales stuff in the car!  Or better yet, drop off some donuts or soft pretzels to the staff. They will remember you!
  • Do a customer satisfaction survey (online or onsite).  Then share findings and ideas you are implementing with your customers.  It’s a great ‘excuse’ to mail or email them!
  • Develop special VIP offers just for them. Exclusivity is a great way to make customers feel special.
  • Start up a blog or newsletter with helpful information and tips that your customers would like to receive.
  • IF your ideal customers are big social media fans, add some fun and interactive applications to your social media site and/or periodically build contests into your updates or posts.

Remember, staying connected only works if that initial ‘buying experience’ is positive.  Make sure it is.  Then stay in touch and enjoy the extra revenue!

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Lost Sales Opportunities

How Many Potential Customers Slip Through Your Fingers

Most businesses spend a lot of time and money generating new leads — to get strangers to raise their hand and say “tell me more”. But if your marketing ends there, a lot of potential customers slip through your fingers. Unconverted prospects offer a goldmine of opportunity if you stay connected and patient.

Timing Is Everything

Not everyone who shows an interest and would benefit from your products or services is ready to buy right now. They may not have the money in their current budget or simply have other priorities today. Or may be satisfied with their current suppliers. They may have a contractual agreement in place. In other words, the timing is wrong.

Fortunately, time has a way of changing things. A ‘no’ today does not mean forever. So it is important to stay connected with warm leads or prospects who represent a potential goldmine. After all, you…

  • Know they have a need because they already called, visited your website or stopped by your location.
  • Already invested money and time doing the hard work.
  • Captured their attention and gave them a compelling reason to call or visit.

Isn’t it worth staying in touch to continue to build the relationship and create future sales?

Stay Connected To Convert More Prospects

Here’s the good news. It takes little time and money to stay connected with unconverted prospects and turn them into paying customers. Here are a few keys to generate future sales and profit.

Develop and Maintain a Database. Whether you use Outlook or Google Contacts, ACT or other CRM systems, a database for customers AND warm prospects is essential if you want to stay connected easily and effectively. Make sure you use the tools in your system to categorize contacts as customers or prospects for more targeted and specialized communication. It will help you avoid sending a ‘VIP customer special’ to a prospect or a ‘give us a try’ message to a long-standing customer.

Create a System. A structured and systematized program allows you to connect with all warm leads at once and can supplement individual calls. Some simple ways to connect include newsletters, letters, postcards, flyers, social media, and email – with special offers, free information, savings or simply a holiday wish. The method you choose will depend on your target audience. How do they prefer to receive information? The frequency of your communication will also depend on your industry and target. With that said, my B2B clients get the best results when they connect monthly; B2C clients often benefit from weekly or semi-monthly communication.

Plan It, Then Do It. You probably plan your marketing to attract new prospects or sell more to current customers. You need to do the same with unconverted prospects. Determine the frequency for your program, come up with the dates (for the entire year), and brainstorm possible themes and offers for each effort. If you take the time to plan it, you may find what many of my clients find. It will be more innovative, more effective and will actually get done. And that’s the key to getting results!

Educate To Sell. Use your stay-connected efforts to educate and continue to build relationships with unconverted prospects. Remember to include an offer and call to action like you would if you were targeting new prospects.

So what would your sales look like if you did a better job staying connected with prospects who already expressed an interest in your services? How many new customers could you get if you converted just 5% of your warm leads? For most small businesses, the answer is a lot! So start tapping into this potential goldmine and watch your sales and profits grow.

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