How much is too many?23

Recently I have been getting the same question come up during workshops: “How many times should I call a new prospect before I give up?” in reality most say “before we move on”, I hear “before I give up”; this is coming up much more than in the past. The reality is that sales professionals should be reaching out more time to any given prospect than they naturally feel comfortable doing.

There have been a number of studies that show that most reps will try three times then move on. Same studies show that it takes as much as 5 to 7 touch points for potential prospects to let us in. These can be phone calls, in reality voice mail, e-mail, or in some cases fax still works.

So if you are moving on after three tries, and your competitor calls twice the following week, you just primed the pump for his success.

Believe me they wont take it personally, you are not going to upset them, there is money in being professionally persistent! Meaning don’t hound them every day for eight weeks, but six time over the course of a couple of weeks will get you more meeting, and as result more sales, more referrals, etc.

Sell well!

The Pipeline

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23 Comments

  1. George Noonan

    It is interesting to read this, I always give up after only a few calls. After I read this today, I called a prospect I tried reaching in December, and he said he remembered my call, but was too busy to get back to me, and I have a meeting with him next week.

    Good stuff,
    George

  2. Jonathan Sherwood

    Well I’m back on the phones this year with an exciting new software application, which I am targeted with gaining market share here in UK. It was good to read the hit and hit and hit again philosophy you espouse as that’s just what I need to be doing, I think your right we tend to give up way to soon. I’m now targeting the market leaders and going back again and again until I get that elusive appointment. Love your new blog.

  3. Mark Pfeifer

    I don’t think you can answer your question with a number.

    My answer would be “never”. There’s no excuse, with all of the good customer management software that’s out there, for not saving a prospect’s contact details. If you tried three times in November and didn’t get an appointment, try again in February. Chances are very good that your prospect won’t even remember that you tried in November….

    I’m not advocating just a pigheaded “never say die” mentality, though that helps. I’m suggesting that you play your prospecting smart. Rather than try a fixed number of times and give up, hold on to their contact details and wait for the right reason to call them…..

    I had one prospect who blew me off for more than six months; I think I had called and emailed him 20 times.

    One day I read an article in which his organization got an award for being best in class at what they do. I emailed it to him as a conversation starter. His response was to email me and ask if I could come in and see him, because with the positive press, the pressure was going to be on him to keep improving. Put me in a good position to drive the first meeting….

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