Building trust with your customer builds sales potential from which you can begin to earn immediate referrals. Meanwhile, your ongoing emails, letters and marketing materials such as ads, newsletters, press releases and professional articles continue to reinforce your interest in having your prospect become your next buyer.
Continue to follow up with more calls, emails and letters through the sale and afterwards, too. You will now be able to earn more referrals due to a job well done. As you have proven your company and yourself to your buyers, they in turn will provide you with more qualified referrals.
It is much less expensive to ask for a referral and earn it from a satisfied customer than to attract unknown prospects through advertising, public relations and promotions. The referred prospect will buy more quickly because he or she has been referred by someone they trust.
Never take your customers for granted. Never think that they will always be your customers. You must earn the right to call your customers “your” customers.
Many years ago, my father, Alan August, who presided over Alexander Young Distilling Company, Margulis Wines and Spirits, and AA Wines simultaneously, shared, “One-third of our customers will always be our customers, one-third will be in transition and one-third we will never earn for one reason or another. Therefore, work diligently to earn everyone’s business every day.”
Recently, while working with a service company and reviewing our previous training sessions, it came to light that the company earned a large new account from one of its competitors, who had not shared its other services with their customer. When the competitor learned that our client received what had previously been their account, the executive questioned the customer as to why they left. The purchasing agent simply shared, “You did not disclose that you also offer these services. The proposal from the new company complements all our needs now. We are more than satisfied.”
The lesson learned by all parties was the importance of continued follow-up with your buyers to let them know about new products and services your company is offering.
[Related: When to follow up with new prospects]
My father had his sales team introduce new products and incentives to his customers daily. By doing so, they made their customers feel important, respected and knowledgeable about what they were buying.
Continue to provide your customers with excellent education, products and services, and they will reward you with sales and referrals.
Robert August, BA, MIM, NAHB Senior Life Director, IRM Fellow, MIRM, CMP, CSP, MCSP, CAASH, CLIPP, and Master Train the Trainer is president and founder of North Star Synergies, Inc., a national firm based in Denver. North Star Synergies specializes in business development strategy, and provides executives, home builders, developers, Realtors, manufacturers and lenders with marketing, management and sales training. Contact Robert by phone at 303-500-3400 or email [email protected].