By Dan Pratt
It is 3:26 am and I am sitting here thinking of someone who I had come into contact with concerning establishing an ebusiness. She had no prior experience and no background suitable for marketing.
As I wrote to her giving her advice and a few suggestions – my thoughts were not on "selling" her, rather, I intended to give her a way of finding a clear direction for her new venture. She had been sold on the peripheral net dream of easy, little effort, sit back and watch the cash roll in - instant biz-op.
These are the myths that cause more harm than all the guns and bombs combined could ever do. These are the false promises that cause a collapse in a persons self esteem and confidence.
After someone has spent many, many weeks following the advice of some fast-buck artist – they eventually blame themselves for not having what it takes to succeed. This is of course wrong – but trying to convince someone who has spent the past three months spending way more than they could hope to receive with one of these pathetic excuses for a business opportunity is like trying to light a fire with two pieces of wet straw – ain’t gonna happen.
But fortunately, she was very bright and took my advice to heart and most importantly – she took the time she needed to seriously consider where she was trying to go with her idea of starting a business of her own. This took about nine days and since I hadn’t heard from her I became concerned that maybe she got discouraged or even gave up on the idea.
I wrote to her just to see how she was doing – truly, it had nothing to do with trying to push her into making a purchase from me. I just wanted to reassure her that her idea of starting a business was solid – she just needed to think about her future and where she wanted to be in three years time. The biz-op would lead nowhere and that is something I will not allow anyone who contacts me for advice to end up.
My point and entire purpose of being in the business that I’m in is to assist people in making very difficult decisions concerning their personal and financial future. I take this responsibility very seriously as well as the people to whom I give advice to. I care. I care about the results that my advice leads to and I care about the people who look to me for direction and security in their ability to act on my advice with confidence that the results will be positive.
Immediately after sending this email – I received a sale. This is what I want you to take with you after you have read this article. There is a lot of talk about the necessity of following up with your prospects to create increased interest in our offers and to continue to follow up until a sale has been made or they simply opt-out.
This is such a negative approach to doing business that you will find that after a while you will cause a certain distance to develop between you and your contacts. What could have been a very nice, personal, long lasting and mutually profitable business relationship has turned into a loss for both you and them.
You see, true follow up is not to make sales – it is to make certain. Certain that they have everything they need to make the right choices for themselves. Certain that you haven’t left them confused and wondering what to do next. Certain that they, as a human being are okay and have what they need to be happy in their final decision.
Next time someone contacts you in a professional manner – do make sure you follow up – but do it with concern for their well being and their best interest. It has been a long road to completely understand what I’m telling you – don’t waste this opportunity to save yourself many years of losing money and friendships in pursuit of the great green monster – money!
Take care of yourselves and the people who you come into contact with in your everyday business dealings.