A prospective client calls your office after reading your newsletter or seeing your 4.9 Google rating with 107 reviews. Congratulations, your marketing efforts are working! The time and money you spent is paying off. You’ve paid for this prospect, so now is definitely not the time to slack off.
This prospective client (prospect) is your most valuable marketing asset, and you need to maintain momentum in order to convert the prospect into a client. That requires a quick response, timely follow-up, and crisp execution. Here are 8 tips to help your firm convert more prospects into clients.
- Respond within one business second. Pick up the phone, or respond to the voicemail or email immediately. If you’re not available, assign someone else. You’re a priority at that moment, but priorities change as the prospect contacts the next firm on their list. You need to stop the search.
- Make the best possible first impression. That first phone call or email exchange needs to set the right tone. Prospects should feel like they’re your number one priority at that moment – nothing else matters. Make sure you give them your full attention – no distractions. Don’t place them on hold unless it’s required for that call.
- Understand the sale. What are you trying to achieve during this first communication? Is it an introductory call, a meeting, or a consultation? That’s your goal or “sale.” Focus on that goal, rather than overwhelming the prospect with too much information.
- Follow-up early and often. In addition to quick response, you may need to leave or send a few (as in 1-3) follow-up messages to regain the prospect’s attention. This also shows that you’re interested. Remember that your competitors are doing this – don’t wait.
- Over-communicate. Once you’ve made your “sale” of a meeting or consultation, actively communicate with a meeting invitation, meeting notes, next steps, and maybe even a thank-you note. All of this confirms the high level of customer service you’ll be providing.
- Track prospect activity. This helps you maintain active contact with all prospects, and will improve your ability to retain them. Tracking can be as simple as a spreadsheet with:
- Lead source
- Contact information
- Next step – with who’s responsible and date due
- Ultimate outcome – e.g., retained on 10/1/19
- Review results. Take a few minutes each month to review prospect activity. What positive or negative trends are you seeing? Are there opportunities or areas of improvement?
- Learn from every interaction. You’ve paid for these prospects. If you can’t retain them, at least learn from them. If a prospect decides not to hire, ask why. You may learn something valuable about your process, your firm, and yourself. Listen to what they have to say, and adjust your tactics accordingly!
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