A day later and a Dollar short – When it’s too late to follow up
Previous blog posts I have written discussed the lack of follow up with leads. What I want-to address today is the timeliness of follow up.
Did you ever have a customer say, “I wish you had taken longer to get in touch with me.”?
I know I haven’t. The opposite has been the case many times. People are often genuinely surprised and receptive when you reach out to them quickly. This is especially true when responding to their initial injuries.
Curiosity may have killed the proverbial cat, but it is a driving force in human development. Without curiosity, our ancestors would never have crossed mountains or deserts to settle in unknown lands. They would never have developed the vast network of overland trade routes, nor explored the world’s oceans. Without curiosity, homo sapiens would not be what we are today.
When a potential client reaches out to you regarding your services or a property, and you respond in a timely manner, you satisfy a basic human need. Conversely, if you do not answer, or do not do so quickly, you deny them of basic human necessity.
Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? How much? These are fundamental questions that children learn in grade school. Older people often memorize them as the first few words when learning a new language. These questions form the basis for journalism, literature, art, and scientific investigation. They are things that every project manager, consultant, and lawyer need to answer to do their job. In essence, the answers to these questions form who we are as individuals and as a society. So, when a potential client is reaching out and asking one of these questions put yourself in a mindset that acknowledges how important the answers you give are to them.
Now I do not know about you, but patience is not one of the virtues I have been able to cultivate well. As the information age continues to progress my patience seems to get less and less. The almost instantaneous answers that come via the internet, the speed of instant messaging and texts have conditioned me to wait only a short time for answers. How many of us are willing to wait as little as five seconds for a web page to load?
The Harvard Business Review in an article on the importance of timely responses as it pertains to following up with online leads came to this conclusion:
“Companies that try to follow up with potential customers within an hour of receiving queries are nearly 7 times as likely to have meaningful conversations with key decision makers as firms that try to contact prospects even an hour later. Yet only 37% of companies respond to queries within an hour.”
Let me break that hour down even further. If you wait more than five minutes to contact a lead, then the odds of qualifying them (have a meaningful dialogue) decreases by 400%, according to research available at Medium.com
There are a lot of different graphs I could show you from various websites, but they all reach the same conclusion if you wait to contact a lead them you are likely to be a day late and a dollar short.
One of the best practices that you can follow to ensure that you are getting notified of all you lead quickly is by routing them all to a CRM. ZipperAgent, for example, notifies you automatically as soon as a lead comes in. This enables you to respond to a lead almost instantaneously.