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The power of the follow-up

Following up is a critical part of the sales process, but unfortunately, it's become the most neglected. There are many reasons why sales are lost, but the biggest reason is poor or no follow-up. How many sales are you losing by omitting this significant step in the process? Following up is a key component of relationship selling, and neglecting this step creates a fatal flaw in your sales process.

Do you resort to using a default excuse for not following up; too busy, not enough time, didn't get around to it, or I forgot? Excuses don't work for serious business owners and professional salespeople. There's just no excuse for dropping the ball on potential business. You're losing money every day when you engage in this costly behavior.

Actions speak louder than words! It's time to stop talking about following up and start participating in this income generating task. Failure to follow up happens in every industry, every day, and it affects all of us personally and professionally. With this type of negligence, it's not surprising that so many business owners and salespeople are struggling.

Why bother to start a business, deliver a sales presentation or meet with a new customer, then not take the time to stay connected and get back to them? How can you not find the time to follow up and complete the business you've started? If you willingly let your customers fall through the cracks due to a lack of organization, failure to follow-through or poor communication, you jeopardize the sale, your professional reputation and the potential for referrals.

How many times have you, as a customer, walked away from a business because of poor follow-up. How many times were you willing to pay more for a product because of better service? Poor communication or lack of responsiveness is a leading reason customers leave businesses for a competitor. It's the easiest fix for most businesses and an instant way to generate more sales.

Think about how much time, money and energy you've put into developing sales strategies, networking and advertising. Dropping the ball at the follow-up stage sends a message to customers that they can't count on you. Is that the first impression you want to leave with your potential customers - that you talk the talk but can't walk the walk?

Following up is in your control, it's your choice and it's an easy way to differentiate yourself from the competition. It's a unique way show your commitment to your customers.

A good follow-up system will generate sales and keep your business in business. It's an investment you can't afford to pass up if you want to stay ahead of your competition. Customers respect business owners and salespeople who are efficient, organized and dedicated enough to follow up and follow through in a professional manner. When you follow up, you win customers.

Since few people follow up properly with customers, you will truly stand out when you do. Great salespeople write things down, they have a daily to-do system, they return calls, they keep their promises and they do what they say they'll do. Following up keeps the lines of communication open and flowing which leads to more closed sales.

In the sales world there are those who think about it and talk about it, and then there are those who do it. How much is not following up costing you? Put a dollar amount on that and you'll be shocked. A good follow-up system is critical in the sales process and can generate huge results. It's an investment you can't afford to pass up if you want to stay ahead of your competition.
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Liz Wendling

Liz Wendling is the president of Insight Business Consultants, a nationally recognized business consultant, sales strategist and emotional intelligence coach. Liz is driven by her passion for business and generating results for her clients. Liz understands the challenges that business owners are facing building a business and selling their professional services in today's market.

Liz shows clients how to tap into and use their innate strength, power and confidence to develop highly successful businesses. She teaches them to create effective, dynamic and fluid client conversations that turn interested prospects into invested clients who keep coming back.

Go to: www.lizwendling.com or email Liz@lizwendling.com

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