HOW TO HANDLE CLIENTS THAT DON'T VALUE YOUR TIME.
In today’s day and age time is a precious commodity. It appears we have more to accomplish within the one thousand four hundred and forty minutes a day we are given, than any other time in history. Not only do we value our time, others value their time as well. We all have someone in our life who is consistently late, has a dozen excuses for their tardiness and feels their time is more valuable than yours. On a personal level, it’s easier to address that issue with them than when they are a business associate or possible client.
So what do you do if a client or possible business partner never seems to return your calls, doesn’t reply to your emails, text messages, or has told you yes they are interested but actions seem to say they are not.
Be Polite: When you don’t hear back from someone right away try not to take it personally. Resist the urge to get mad or angry, you have no idea what is happening in their world. Showing that you’re friendly and that you understand how busy your contact is, is a good way to keep him or her happy and interested.
Be Persistent But Not Every Day: Sending a follow-up email every day doesn’t show you have gumption or passion, it shows you don’t respect a person’s time. A good rule of thumb is once a week.
Directly Ask if You Should Stop: If you want people to respect your time, then treat theirs as if it were your own. Being honest and asking “I know how busy you are and completely understand if you just haven’t had the time to reach back out to me. Would it be possible if I contact you at a later date?” It could also be an economic reason for their hesitation. Asking them directly what the hesitation is, gives them the opportunity to open up and explain their needs.
Change it up: Don’t follow up in the same fashion every week. Send an email one week, maybe a phone calls the next or if your locations are close stop by to see them in person. (Surprise)
I wanted to get a couple more points of view on this subject so I asked this question to a few of my friends and colleagues.
Drew Griffin, Founder and App Developer of Podcasting Magazine.
You can’t ‘handle’ people at all. Treat them as you wish to be treated with punctuality. Be mindful and understanding that things come up and sometimes priorities are not always equal. Under-Promise and Over-Deliver. Attempt to set a timeline and schedules by following up with communications and reiterating what was said in previous conversations and correspondence is always good practice. Take massive action and let your actions speak with volume.
John White Founder & CMO of Social Marketing Solutions
One of the golden rules of sales I learned in my days in the B2B world was too never spend too much time chasing a single client. I witnessed many sales reps that would spend so much of their time chasing a few deals that they didn't prospect enough for new opportunities. Then, when the deals they were chasing ended up not closing, they didn't have any good opportunities in their funnel.
As a small business owner, my time is spread very thin. So, I will give people two chances to respond. Then, after that, I will leave them alone and let them contact me when they are truly ready to move forward. It's hard to walk away from a deal when a client has expressed strong interest, but sometimes it the best thing to do.
Connie Kadansky –Founder of Exceptional Sales Performance
First, discipline yourself to not make up stories as to why the prospect is not replying. Stories like, "maybe i screwed up. They don't like me. Maybe I was too aggressive." Stick to the facts. They have not responded period. With that out of the way, remind yourself of your prospect's key objectives, challenges, trials, burdens, What value can you provide them? What do you have as proof that they were interested in the first place? Give them a few days and start over with What's In It For Them to connect.
Then get busy on filling your pipeline with other prospects so that you are not so focused on one single prospect. As you do this you'll create more space for creativity to reconnect.
Dan McCormick, Co-Founder of Bowl Of Heaven, Entrepreneur | Speaker | Coach
I believe in story selling.
If, that's is a big if, I like them and the possibilities of us doing business, I never quit, leave messages with stories that are relevant to making their life better with my product or service.
If I feel like there is no hope and it's a one-way street I may leave a story every few months and wait for their clock to be right.