As many of you head out to fairs, festivals and events this season, I would like to remind everyone that the fortune in our business does not just lie in the follow-up….it is in the follow through!
In talking with a coaching client this week, she commented that she had done the follow-up phone call to a customer and was “gonna” mail her a new catalog. My question to her was “When is GONNA?” She had talked with the prospect three days earlier and still had not mailed the catalog. The follow-up was spot on…the follow through was missing the mark.
Be on target with follow up and follow through -
Set Yourself Apart From the Rest for Success
A key to successful events is not just in getting a box full of leads, but is in the follow-up and follow through with these leads in a very timely manner. “Very timely” meaning within 48 hours…or sooner when possible.
These actions alone will set you apart from 80% of the other vendors.
In a nutshell, here are five tips for having successful events:
- Before starting any event, have a plan. Be sure you set (and write out) realistic goals for the event so you can evaluate it. Did it met your goals, needs and expectations? Note that going into an event to get “name recognition” or “product exposure” means you don’t expect any monetary gain. Don’t be disappointed when you hit that goal!
- Be prepared for the event. This will vary greatly on your product, company and goals. At minimum be sure to have a way to collect prospective client, customer, etc information. Include asking, “What is the best way to reach you?” TEXT, EMAIL, FACEBOOK, PHONE, etc.
- Contact every lead within 48 hours of the event. Preferably this is by their “best way“…but if needed it can be an email sent to everyone (privately — no CC) thanking them for visiting your booth and you will be in touch soon. If you did a drawing, this is a great time to announce the winner such as “Mary C from Appletown won our grand prize.” Including a picture of your booth in the email or a link to your Facebook business page with a picture there is a great way to stay fresh in their minds.
- Follow up with each lead using their “best way” as soon as possible. HOT leads should be followed up with immediately. Personalized follow up is key to developing the long-term relationship and even securing the initial sales.
- Follow through as promised. This seems to be the step that is overlooked. Once you have made the initial follow up, be sure to provide the information or future contact the prospect needs. Do not wait two or three days to mail a catalog. Have packets pre-made or materials ready to assemble as you make the follow up calls. Mail, email, Facebook information as you commit to doing so.