Follow Up. It’s one of the most important things you can do in order to achieve the results you want.
Sadly, I find that many don’t seem to hold it in as high regard as they should or practice it with the needed level of execution either.
If you are trying to grow a business, build relationships or make something happen… proper Follow Up is key. Without it you are diluting your potential effectiveness and being effective is what it’s all about.
Proper Follow Up is something that can set you apart from the crowd and make a significant difference in how well you convert outreach into opportunity.
Here are 5 Ways to Improve Your Follow Up:
1. Make it a Part of Your Plan. This is critical. Follow Up takes time but most of us don’t factor it in, but we need to. It should be a part of your system or process. Making it a part of your plan will ensure that you give it enough time to make it work.
2. Don’t Assume. If you send an email and someone doesn’t respond within 48 hours, email them again or pick up the phone and give them a call. Don’t “assume” they received your first email and just aren’t responding. In many cases they may have simply not received the first email… and even if they had, sometimes they need a gentle reminder.
3. Never Take a Condescending Tone. In your follow up with a new prospect or relationship, never lean into someone with statements that make it sound like they owe you something… such as “I’ve reached out to you 5 times and you have not responded to me…” etc. Simply say something like “I sent you an email a few days ago and just wanted to make sure you received it. Did you?” You never want to put someone you’re trying to “woo” in a defensive stance. There is a fine line between persistent Follow Up and being too aggressive.
4. Make “Thank You” a Part of the Plan. This is a biggie. Don’t just use follow up to get things done or get what you want… use it to say Thank You as well. When the deal is over or the transaction is complete, follow up with a note of thanks to the person or persons who helped make it so. A little Thank You goes a long way!
5. Be Intentional. It’s simple but proper follow up starts by knowing what you want to accomplish. It’s thinking with the end in mind so that all of your follow up and communication can move things forward in the manner you are seeking. It goes back to making it a part of your plan… but like all things, your plan will only succeed if you work it.