Have you ever worried about being annoying to a new lead? Or maybe you’ve been curious how you can effectively handle following up without being too pushy or annoying?
Following up is one of the easiest ways to bring in more revenue! You’d be amazed when you find out how much revenue is left on the table from accountants not having a sales follow up process.
But maybe there’s something holding you back? You don’t want to be too salesy. You don’t want to be pushy. You don’t want to be annoying.
Well, I’m here to tell you that 80% of sales take at least five follow-ups before they close a deal. Your clients actually like it when you reach out to them and show you care.
The problem is most accountants don’t even follow up ONCE! In fact, I don’t think that ANY accountants that I have worked with have had a sales follow up system!
Why is Follow Up Necessary?
Like me, you probably have a giant stack of business cards with a rubber band around it from people that you’ve met. You have leads that you’ve reached out to and the timing wasn’t right.
But why follow up?
One of the best things about following up is that it puts you at the top of their mind.
Not everyone is a good fit for your business and your firm – and that’s ok! But you want to make sure that for those who ARE a good potential fit, you stay in their mind as the best choice!
Something as simple as a monthly check-in (and I’m not talking about writing a “just checking in” email – more on that in a bit) can keep you on their mind. Continuing to develop those relationships and deepen the connection means that when that client does need an accountant or tax professional or bookkeeper, they’ll automatically think of YOU.
And that is how you find the fortune in the follow-up.
Sales Follow-Up Helps You Reach Clients at the Right Time
Have you ever met an amazing potential client and thought, “That is my ideal client!”
And then you find out that the time isn’t right. They say they aren’t ready for your services. They need to wait for after a certain event, or they have something else going on at this moment.
Following up is one way to find out if there is a better connection time for them to join your client roster.
One of my current students, Scott, once told me that it wasn’t the right time to join my course, but I knew that he was the right kind of person for it. I wanted to work with him and knew that I could help him!
So, I put him on my calendar and made sure to follow up.
Sure enough, when I contacted him later, it was a better time! He joined my course and began working and applying the principles that I taught him.
The best part is when I challenged him to work on his follow-up practices in his firm, it brought in an additional $240,000 in revenue!
Not only did my follow-up help him, but it also empowered him to be able to better serve his clients!
That’s the power of following up.
Follow Up Helps You Know and Relate to Your Clients
When you follow up with your leads, you don’t want to send an email that says “just following up” or “just checking in.”
That means nothing to your clients!
You’ll want to have good notes from previous contacts with your clients, and talk to them about the things that are important to them! That will make you stand out because you are showing them just how much you care.
Some ideas and examples:
- Last time you talked, they said they had a big presentation. You can ask how it went!
- You know your lead loves grilling and was telling you about how they grilled a brisket even in the wintertime. Suppose you see a sale ad for a big grill sale! You can send that to them, and say “Hey, I know you were talking about your brisket last time we talked….I saw this and thought of you!” Instant connection.
- Your client’s dream goal is a family vacation to Fiji, and you see an article about the best resorts in Fiji. You can send them the article and say, “Once we get all your business taken care of, I thought this might go on your list of places to go in Fiji!”
These connect with your clients on a personal level and show them that they’re more than just revenue.
Many accountants like to send tax news or articles about tax law changes, but I’m here to tell you that’s not what your client really cares about. They care about that personal connection.
How to Follow Up With Your Clients
But how can I follow up without being sleazy, pushy or annoying? You know that I love selling, and it can be done without any sleaze! Here are some of my favorite tips and tricks for following up.
When you meet with a client, take good notes of the conversation, and send it back to them in an email. You’ll want to email them quickly after the conversation while the meeting is still fresh in their mind.
Schedule Your Next Encounter
Make sure that you schedule the next meeting before you finish the current meeting. That way, you know the next steps and when you will see each other again. This eliminates the back and forth annoyance of emailing each other later.
Say Thank You!
Send a thank you email after every meeting with your notes! As your client reviews these notes, they’ll know that you see and hear them and what’s important to them. You can also include a reminder of your next meeting time.
Keep Information About Your Client Close
If you use a calendar tool to schedule your next meetings, copy and paste your email text into the “notes” section of your appointment for your client. That way, you have all of their information in one place and don’t have to flip back and forth.
Take Time to Get to Know Your Client’s Needs
Don’t have information to go on? It’s time to learn more! Go grab a cup of coffee and learn more about your clients so you can connect with them on a personal level.
For Denise, most of her clients are like family and that’s why they keep going back to her! She retains her clients for years because they know her and she knows them!
You don’t have to have a fancy system – I’ve never used anything other than a simple Google spreadsheet & my ical on my mac. Google Calendar is also another great tool along with the spreadsheet.
The important thing is to simply follow up! It automatically sets you apart from all the other accountants out there.
How would your firm change if you devoted an hour each week to follow-up? Let’s make it even easier: What would happen if you added only 30 minutes of follow-up each week?
That means you’d have 2-4 hours of follow-up each month. My guess is that this change could bring in as much as $2,000-$10,000 in additional revenue! Can you imagine how that would impact your firm and increase the value that you bring to your clients?
I’d love to hear about how you incorporate follow-up into your processes! Comment below about your experiences with following up and how it impacts your firm. You can also send an email to hello(at)thepitchqueen.com and tell me how it goes! I LOVE to hear about how you’re changing your business!
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