Sales is a Long Game
What to do when you get the silent treatment
Wouldn’t it be nice if every new sale fell into your lap from the clear blue sky? Reality is that most sales come after hours and hours of hard work sending reach outs to many, many prospective customers. When people don’t respond to your message, you’re not alone in feeling discouraged. In fact, 44% of individuals in sales-related roles stop reaching out when potential customers are silent. We’re here to encourage you to keep going! Remember: no doesn’t mean no forever.
Knowing that it takes an average of 8–12 points of connection before a prospect commits to a sale (or joining your team), it is important to manage how you respond when there is silence on the other side. By planning for this natural part of the sales cycle, you’ll feel more confident and find more success through your perseverance.
Here are our 3 tips on how to keep going when you get the silent treatment:
- Don’t give up. Create a timeline and reduce the frequency of your contacts as time goes on without a reply. This can vary depending on your industry, but keep reaching out until they tell you to stop, even if it’s just twice a year. For direct sellers following the 2–2–2 method, messaging your prospects in a friendly and personal way every 4–6 months is great (and we’ve built an app that does exactly that!)
- Be direct. Don’t be afraid! Using circular and passive language in an effort to be less “sales-y” or annoying may confuse people. Be clear in your ask. When you’re not asking for anything, be natural and genuine in your connection with them as a person.
- Focus on relationship building. Your primary goal when connecting with people is to build trust. Keep things personal. Meet in person for coffee or drinks occasionally, if possible, or connect using social media for individuals not based in your hometown.
Director Dawn Schaffer uses social media to invest in her customers personally:
“People don’t want to be a dollar sign!” she says. “Friend customers on social media and see what they’ve been up to — a new job, vacation, kid’s dance recital, etc. Challenge yourself to comment on your customer’s posts and truly engage! It is way more meaningful and impactful, builds trust, and boosts engagement on your own posts in return.”
Most importantly, review your approach regularly. Check in and figure out what is currently working and what isn’t, and why.
- Update your messages. How long are your messages? We also recommend updating your verbiage seasonally, if not monthly. Studies show that the best time to reach out on a cold call/message is between 4–5 pm on Thursdays, followed by the same time on Wednesdays.
- Experiment with communication channels. Rotate communication methods (we’ve found that texts and Facebook Messages work best!) and mix direct business-related messages with personal ones.
As an entrepreneur, you will spend a significant portion of your work time connecting with people and building intentional relationships before they ever make a purchase. It’s important to keep going and persevere through the no responses and silence. Knowing that the sales biz is a long game and using these suggestions and new techniques will have you feeling confident in your strategy!
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