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The Persistent Follow Up

Those of us who work in sales are deeply and brutally familiar with rejection. It comes with the territory. And you’re unlikely to succeed in sales unless you’re prepared to accept it. But many sales people confuse a lack of response with rejection. Meaning, many stop contacting their prospect because they didn’t receive a response quickly. The result is a lot of lost deals.

But don’t take our word for it, let’s look at some numbers:

  • Only 2% of sales happen after the first point of contact. If you aren’t following up, you’re missing out on 98% of your sales.
  • 60% of customers say “no” 4 times before saying “yes”.
  • 50% of sales happen after the 5th follow up.

As is easy to see, if you’re like 44% of sales people who are giving up after only one follow up, you’re missing out on the majority of your sales.

This means that closing more deals is not only a function of your messaging but also, importantly, on your persistence. Sales people often have a reputation for being insistent and annoying, but the data suggests that it pays off.

Every organization has its own structure and channels for follow up cadences, but the easiest way by far to engage in consistent follow ups is by using an email sequence/cadence software (e.g. Mixmax, SalesHandy, Apollo, SalesLoft etc.) and programming email campaigns for each prospect. It’s an easy way to be persistent at scale and make sure you aren’t losing deals due to a lack of follow up. The exact number of follow ups depends on each organization, but there is evidence to suggest that anything between 3 and 6 is a good cadence.

There are many factors that will make someone successful at sales, and persistence is certainly one of them. Luckily there is plenty of accessible software to make following up easier than ever. Be respectful and pitch value, but don’t be afraid to be annoying.

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