#9: Automate Your Follow-Up Process

Office Operations

This Systems Sunday video lesson will cover AUTOMATING your prospect follow-up system.

Last week, I went over my 3-step follow-up system in which I showed you how to create categories or buckets for your prospects, create a system for what happens to the people in each category, and, finally, add the contact’s information into a database.

And it’s that last piece – entering the information into a database, or CRM (customer relationship management) program, and what happens to the people in each category – that is a GREAT process to automate because it will save you loads of time AND make it so that things aren’t falling through the cracks.

In this 5-minute video, I show you my own follow-up process overview and then the step-by-step.

It’s Lisa Wells with another Systems Sunday.

If you have business cards thrown about everywhere and don’t know what to do with them, this system is going to be for you.

I think we all know that better follow-up will equal more sales, more clients, and ultimately, more income. But are you using all of your options? I would say “No.”

Because this is what I see, here are some gaps:

1. Forget where your leads come from

You may talk to a lot of people at an event and afterward, the details of those conversations can become fuzzy and maybe can’t remember some of the promises that were made or some of the details about the individual’s business. You can’t remember everything and are relying on your memory.

2. Inconsistent follow-up

This is another very common gap and the reason why many of you may be leaving money on the table and this is why you have business cards thrown about – no follow-up system in place.

So here we go with the 3-step system.

Step 1: Create categories for your prospects

Think about the types of people you will meet and I want you to categorize them. Here are a couple of examples. Let me use a networking event as an example:

If you are at an event and you engage in conversation with someone, you talk to them 1:1 about your services, they express an interest, and you promise to send them something – some kind of engagement where you feel they would be a good customer or client. That is someone that you can flag as a “VIP.”

So our first bucket is a VIP (very interested person). They asked you for a resource or a follow-up and they need an IMMEDIATE response.

Bucket two could be a warm lead. This is someone with who you didn’t necessarily have a 1:1 conversation with but you talked to them, met them at the event, they expressed an interest, you have their business card and they need a response SOON.

Bucket three is a cold lead. This is someone who was at the same event, you didn’t meet them and you don’t have their business card.

Another example is if you are a graphic designer. Maybe your categories are going to look like this because these are the types of clients you generally work with: logos, new websites, or website makeovers. So your process for a website makeover is going to be a lot different than say a logo. So think about how you’d categorize it.

Another example is a coach. Your offerings are a VIP Day, personal coaching, and group program.  So those are your categories.

Step 2: Create a system for what happens to the people in each category

For example, what do you do for those people who are VIPs? Do you have your assistant call them to schedule a phone call or do you send them an email with a link to your scheduler? Do you invite them out for coffee? Do you have them over for dinner? What does that process look like? And this is going to look different for each business. If you are a graphic designer and someone says “Hey I was thinking about updating my logo.” Your follow-up system may be an email with samples and a price sheet or a phone call or a video screen share. 

If they are interested in a website refresh in the near future, their follow-up could include a follow-up email, connect with them on LinkedIn, ask them if you can send them a free report, maybe something like “top 10 design mistakes” or something, and then create a task to follow up with them at a later date. 

So for each category, what is the step-by-step system that needs to happen? That’s step 2. 

Step 3: Enter the contact information into your customer database

We talked last week about customer relationship managers (CRM), what to track and how so if you haven’t checked that out, go back and review, it’s only 5 minutes. Once you’re back in the office, the key piece here is to enter the contact information into the database. This is where a lot of people don’t follow up. They get the business card and put them in their purse, leave them in the car, and never follow up.

Make sure if you have a spreadsheet on your desk you’re entering in their information there with the category because you’ll be following up with them, whatever that looks like. Or if it’s in your CRM system, you’re entering it in there and maybe you have an automated process afterwards, which we’ll talk about next week.

My 3-step system will get you started so that you can stop adding business cards to shoeboxes and finally have a system in place so that you aren’t leaving opportunities and money on the table. In my program, BusinessFreedomGuide.com we go into a lot more examples so be sure to check out the program. 

 

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Growth & Profit Plan: Offline Marketing & Networking Events

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  • Training video
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