What is a keep-in-touch strategy and why do you need one? Ever meet someone who loves what you do, but isn't ready to buy your product or service right now? That person is your prospect.
Prospects are very important to your business! They connect with you and they have a HIGH level of interest in what you offer. For whatever reason, they're not ready to buy from you right now. In the future, when they are ready, they
will want YOU, not someone else.
When your prospects become ready, you want to be at the top of their mind. How do you get there? By keeping in touch.
You MUST have a system for keeping in touch with your prospects. These prospects are qualified in every way: they want what you offer, they identify with and like you, EXCEPT the timing isn't right. If you've already aroused their interest and desire, why toss them aside? Instead, keep in touch with them so YOU can claim their sale when they become ready.
Like me, you may have already tried some keep-in-touch strategies that do NOT work.
1. It does NOT work to write a note on the back of someone's business card and then leave that card on your desk for a few months.
2. It does NOT work to email or call them once, then leave their card on your desk.
3. It does NOT work to rely on your memory: to remind yourself to invite them to join your next party/talk/get-together, and then forget about them.
You may have some additional techniques you've tried that also do NOT work :-)
In addition to staying in touch with prospects, we also want to stay in touch with people who give us referrals. Who gives you referrals? Your friends, family, colleagues, past customers, and current customers are all referral sources.
Ideally, we can use one keep-in-touch strategy for all these groups: from colleagues to prospects.
I like to write, so I use a written keep-in-touch strategy.
That's what this ezine is.
There are lots of ways to use a written keep-in-touch strategy, whether you like to write or not. You want to choose a system that works for you - you feel comfortable creating the content and you can consistently stay with it over the course of a year.
You want to pick:
• a technology that works for you. A blog, Facebook, Twitter, an email newsletter, and direct mail are all options.
• a frequency you can stick with: monthly to daily. You MUST communicate with your prospects and referral sources at least monthly!
• topics of interest to you, and by extension, to your community.
• the amount of writing you want to do.
Here are some examples of regular emails I receive from people with whom I want to stay in touch.
• A daily quote by a famous person, with a 1- to 3-sentence idea added on by the sender. Minimal writing required.
• A weekly list of 5 tips, with a short description of each. A little more writing required, but still not much.
• Twice a month ezines, with articles of about 500 words. Ezines require you to consistently create content. And remember that there are a bazillion newsletter articles in Internet article directories that you can reuse for free in your newsletter, simply by including a paragraph crediting the author.
You can also use direct mail to stay in touch with prospects. On the plus side, people like getting mail from real people and so may be more likely to open it. In particular, people love receiving hand-written cards. Hand-written notes or cards are wonderful for special occasions: to thank someone, to compliment someone on an accomplishment, to offer help or sympathy.
Direct mail is more expensive than email and you have to ensure you have your recipients' postal address, which may be on their card or not. If not, it's possible that they're not comfortable sharing it.
Blogs, Facebook, and Twitter are free, so they're the cheapest techniques. The tradeoff is that they require the most frequent updating by you. Readers expect to see your blog/Facebook account/Twitter account updated AT LEAST once a week, and preferably more often - up to multiple times per day.
Remember your goal - to stay in touch with prospects and referral sources. In addition, you are building your community - a community full of like-minded people who share your interests and concerns. They want to learn from your expertise and understand your beliefs.
Most importantly, they're on the same journey you are on - you can be their guide along the way. What a wonderful thought to keep in your heart as you communicate with your fellow travellers!
CALL TO ACTION
How many business cards do you have lying around, for people you intended to contact but never got around to?
How much of a difference would it make to your business if you shared information about your business and your value-added with them, instead of ignoring them?
If you don't have a keep-in-touch strategy, you're leaving money on the table.
Marcy Stahl’s passion is helping women direct sellers and solopreneurs achieve the successful lifestyle they want. She knows that the top entrepreneurs have the top mindsets. Her mission is to help every entrepreneur develop a profitable and abundant mindset.
Marcy is a serial entrepreneur. Previously, she co-founded and managed a government contracting firm that earned over $1M in annual revenues. She holds a B.S. with honors and M.S. in Computer Science from George Mason University. Prior to coaching, she spent 21 years in the corporate world in technology.
She is the co-author of Direct Selling Power. Marcy is an Area Chapter Coordinator with the Direct Selling Women’s Alliance (DSWA) and a member of the Direct Selling Women’s Speaker Bureau. She’s currently in coaching school for direct sellers.