You just closed a huge deal. You feel like you’re on top of the world, and now it’s time to report back. Utilize this guide to assist you to close leads.

You just finished a call, sent over the proposal and high-fived your colleagues. What could go wrong?

And then all of a sudden, you send an email and days go by without any kind of response. You’re tracking the email that was opened 20+ times before it got to them.

It’s the end of the month and your manager is asking about what you’re doing with that deal. You keep telling them “I got it, I got it!” but in reality, you feel like throwing a Pokeball at Pidgey every time he escapes.

I always thought that if I was patient, they would eventually come to me. But they never did! Finally my patience ran out and it felt like the hardest decision of all time.

One problem with some sales people is that they don’t follow up on deals. They may not find out the customer’s reasons for moving on, or just stop replying to them.

I’ve been there before as a salesperson. You get notified that you lost the deal because they stopped communicating with you, and when I looked at the details of your opportunity it said “Went Dark.’

After you ask for more details, the salesperson tells you that no matter how hard they tried to get a response from them, it didn’t work. You think back and wonder if maybe the first meeting went really well because this person wouldn’t reply? So then you go into your Salesforce Activity section.

  • They called zero of the prospects on their list.
  • I like to call prospects, but I won’t leave voicemails.
  • I found that one of the most effective ways to keep in touch with prospects is by sending them a few emails here and there, each time reaching back out to see if they are still interested.

You look at the email that he sent out and find a sentence like this: “We are looking for someone to work with our company. We’re not just interested in what you do, but also who you are.”

Subject: Checking in

“Hey NAME,

I know we discussed that the platform would be great for you and I wanted to check-in with you about how it’s going. Did your finance team have any questions?

I’ve emailed you many times and haven’t heard back.

Call me!

Cheers,

Sales Rep”

John Barrows, author of the following post about email subject lines, has suggestions for how to avoid “checking in” as a default. To summarize this article: – Diversity is important and companies are putting efforts into hiring more diverse candidates during recruitment processes. – According to John Barrow’s blog on social media use by organizations, it is best not to overuse “check ins” or similar phrases when sending emails because they can seem like an invasion of privacy.

I have been in both of these positions, and I want to share a story about how it took four months for one prospect to finally commit.

I first started talking to this company back in February and there were a lot of conversations. I had patience, strategy, and teamwork on my side.

Here are some ways to manage multiple stakeholders, know when to walk away from a prospect, never follow-up with “just checking in” and provide value each time you do contact the prospect.


Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following: 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. 😀

Context 

Size: 150 Employees

Potential revenue could range from $50,000 to $100,000 a month.

The company was able to get a proof of concept in about 4 months and then it took another 4-5 months for the integration phase.

Stakeholder Count: 3-4 (CFO, COO, CEO) – These are the main decision makers

1. Matt (CEO) 3. Jane (HR Manager)

  • Chief Operating Officer – Gregory Oversees all financial and organizational-wide decisions
  • Oversees all of the decisions with money and organization-wide matters.
  • Head of Infrastructure – Adam Oversees all infrastructure decisions
  • Oversees all decisions related to infrastructure.
  • Chief Technology Officer – Arnold Oversees all technology decisions (non-infrastructure related)
  • Oversees all the technology decisions that don’t involve infrastructure.
  • Infrastructure Architect – Andy Handles day-to-day infrastructure workloads, implementation, and maintenance
  • Maintains and fixes the infrastructure of a company.

February 18th

I reached out to the CTO and he told me that I should go through someone else, who was in charge of it. I don’t think you need a question mark at the end of your sentence because there’s no confusion about what they’re trying to say.

This tells me Adam should be my main point of contact and Arnold can act as a champion. I found out that he has an open mind because his response was positive with “DO Technologies has a very positive presence on platforms like HackerNews”

 

February 25th

I was able to schedule a meeting with Adam, the head of infrastructure. He postponed it after 2 days and then rescheduled for later on in the week. I’ll have another meeting with him once he’s back from vacation.

close leads

I waited for a week, but didn’t hear back. I decided to be proactive and go on LinkedIn to find out who the COO was.

close leads

Boom. Meeting set.

Click To Tweet

March 17th

We had a great demo with a prospect, found out their pain points and agreed on what they needed from us. We also confirmed the next steps for both sides.

close leads

I quickly returned the feedback, but it was too late.

close leads

I was waiting on a response from someone who I had submitted my information to. It took weeks before they finally responded, by email this time which is how it should be done in the first place. They gave me one sentence saying that things were pushed back another week and then asked for more of our company’s information.

April 7th

I was disappointed to hear nothing from them, so I sent the first option: 1) Pick a time that they’re available or 2) Use my Calendly link for easy booking.

close leads

And, no response.

At this point, you have to start considering other options and that’s okay. You’ve built a strong relationship; you’ve done some work together; and it might be time for the two of you to try something new.

The LinkedIn photo is missing and the profile isn’t filled out, so let’s just assume he doesn’t use it. It looks like this company is located in another country with different time zones, which means phone calls are not a good option.

Text messages are a great way to keep in touch with your customers, but you don’t have the person’s phone number yet.

One of the things we’ve found is that Skype can be a good option for us since our customers are developers. But he doesn’t have it in his signature, so I’ll go with email.

April 18th

When I contacted a prospect, instead of just checking in or touching base with them, I made sure to mention two things: 1) congratulations on recent news and 2) information about our own company. If you use LinkedIn Sales Navigator or Owler for automated alerts on your top tier accounts, it will be easier than having to manually research each time.

close leads

Gregory said he would contact me again in a month.

I was discouraged when we still hadn’t had a response after the first two months. I thought it would be normal for some sales reps to get frustrated and mark this deal as Closed Lost.

May 4th

I would never have given up on that deal alone. I asked my VP, our CEO and the other members of the team for help.

close leads

After I sent this email, the company’s CEO responded quickly and said he wanted to bring up our ideas later.

I approached this deal more strategically since the other Head of Infrastructure had been on vacation. I needed them both to be back on board, so I sent a separate email asking if they wanted to join the call.

The COO and I didn’t exactly see eye-to-eye at this point. In order to control the outcome as best as possible, I wanted more stakeholders in the room. The person who ended up agreeing was from IT: “I want you to put together a meeting with me, your two founders and our three largest investors.”

close leads

I was able to get this information because I reached out to the champion. He will give us details on how we should close the deal and he’ll also help with customer referrals.

I start to think this might be a good hire and we’re off on the right foot.

close leads

I was happy to see the swag box I had sent over the weekend show up on their doorstep. They were very excited and we moved forward with closing out that deal.

I still haven’t heard back from anyone at this company. The only email I got was the one that said they were considering me for a position.

close leads

I was disappointed when my champion never returned the last few messages I sent. After a while, he didn’t respond to any of them and it seemed like they were ignoring me.

close leads

I then realized that they were working on the infrastructure and contacted their COO.

Later, they sent me a response”

close leads

We finally got the ball moving after 4 months of hard work.

In sales, you can’t always expect to be given what you deserve. You have to negotiate for it.

Key takeaways:

  • Never lose a deal alone
  • When you are trying to reach your goal, figure out which stakeholders can help and how.
  • Don’t send a “check in” email. Give value every time you reach out.
  • It’s not always the end of the world if a deal falls through.

Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following: 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. 😀
Editors Note:

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Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
This post was written by Content at Scale, a solution that uses AI + a team of optimization specialists to publish hundreds of high quality, SEO optimized content straight to your blog. It’s the first and only solution that allows you to truly scale content marketing.