Follow up

I keep track of all my inbound email and ‘offer form’ enquiries using a very simple system:

  • I flag emails that I need to respond to; and
  • I place the last email from an enquiry that hasn’t led to a sale in a ‘follow up folder’.

The ‘follow up folder’ is what I’ll be discussing today.

Businesses that excel at sales will often have a series of traits in common. One of these traits is effectively managing communication with existing and prospective customers; including the distribution of timely, targeted sales messages. Many of these businesses maximise their conversion rates by following up on ‘warm leads’. Domainers are both investors and salespeople – so it makes sense to learn from these best practice sales tactics.

You don’t need to spend big bucks on a fancy Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, just work out a simple system that suits your approach.

If you haven’t heard back after responding to an enquiry, it would be crazy not to follow up given the prospect of an additional sale.

A few tips:

  • Don’t pester people – I usually only follow up once. I don’t like spam and I hate it when telemarketers pester me incessantly, so I don’t do it to other people.
  • Timing
    • Don’t be pushy – firing off a follow up email 5 hours after your last contact is too soon!
    • Don’t resuscitate dead leads – an enquiry from 3 years ago is old news, things change and they’ve moved on (I’m speaking from experience on this one!).
  • Keep it snappy – don’t oversell it, they’ve already expressed interest in the past (they’re ‘warm leads’).
  • Don’t act desperate – slicing 90% off your price signals that you’re either desperate for a sale or you grossly overpriced to start with. Both scenarios put you at a disadvantage, and when they see ‘blood in the water’ they may seek to knock even more off the price.

If there’s been radio silence on an enquiry for a month or so, that’s usually when I’ll follow up with another email or phone call. Of course if the initial communication went particularly badly, then it won’t be helpful to re-engage with that person (unfortunately, on rare occasions this happens – some people have misguided views about domain investors!).

I’ve sent out some follow up emails today, with a small ‘end of financial year discount’ included in a few of these. It’s a small hook that might get some of them over the line, but it’s not ‘fire sale’ pricing!

2 thoughts on “Follow up on enquiries

  • tim connell
    June 15, 2015 at 12:13 am
    Permalink

    “Don’t pester people”

    nice informative article, i have had success by sending an email that BCC’s other people who may have been interested, the “to” is to me and nobody can see who else i have sent it to, this i feel has caused a ” fear of loss”

    i’ve used it for many years, in good faith as i have only sent it to people who have enquired.

    i must say the difference has been not in selling a domain, but selling advertising on a domain but i do feel the principle applies.

    the reward however has been higher then most posted domain sales !

    tim

  • Luke Summers
    June 15, 2015 at 7:13 am
    Permalink

    Thanks for commenting Tim. It’s great to hear other examples of this approach being used.

    Using warm leads makes a big difference and your comment about good faith reflects that this approach isn’t just spamming large volumes of people (which can get you into trouble in Australia with the Anti-Spam Act: http://www.acma.gov.au/Industry/Marketers/Anti-Spam).

    Advertising still accounts for a huge proportion of the money generated online, so that’s a fair point!

    Luke

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