Way back in 2002, Richardson’s founder, Linda Richardson, published a Cyber Sales Tip called “Make a Thank You Call to Help Build Relationships.” I found this email newsletter while cleaning up some of our archives and in honor of #tbt (Throw Back Thursday) and the pending holiday weekend, I thought I would post it to our blog site as these points are sometimes lost in today’s digital world and are still quite relevant even 13 years later. Hope you in enjoy this post and “thank you” for your readership and support of our blog.
Make a Thank You Call to Help Build Relationships
If you like feeling appreciated by your clients, if you want to strengthen and build relationships, and if you want to win more business, start making thank-you calls today.
Certainly the thank-you call after a meeting or when you win a deal is expected, but the ones after the sale at any time or triggered by a milestone (such as one month or one year after the project, pilot, or implementation…) to say thank you has tremendous relationship and selling power. For example, you could say, “It has been a month (a quarter, even a year, we just completed X and since…I wanted to call…) and I wanted to say thank you…”
Whether you get voice mail or actually reach your client, the power of the thank-you call is the same.
Here are some guidelines:
- Tickle in your calendar making thank-you calls as a reminder (since there’s no deal at hand).
- Be sure you are fully up-to-date on the status of the relationship and initiative.
- When you make the call be positive.
- During the conversation jot down all key ideas and perspectives — not just facts. Jot things down you want to refer to later so you don’t forget, but also don’t interrupt the flow of the call.
- Prepare and keep it concise!
- State the purpose to position the call.
- Thank the client for confidence in choosing you or for his or her introduction to the head of IT or the support of your proposal that helped you win the business.
- Be enthusiastic. Show energy and conviction. Be upbeat.
- Give a five to ten-second summary of what’s been accomplished (of course, before the call check that things are going well and be aware of any snags or issues).
- Compliment the client’s team and be specific.
- State that you welcome feedback to serve him/her even better.
- Say the words “thank you” at the start and the finish. The salesperson was so elated by the call that he went further. He called the former liaison who had been reassigned to another area to thank her (and identified a future opportunity) and called one of his own teammates on the account to say thank you. Goodwill leads to more goodwill and more good sales.
One salesperson called a very senior decision maker at a Fortune 100 company and left a thank-you message to mark one year into the ongoing relationship. The salesperson’s reward – so far, a gracious complimentary call back from the senior who, in the course of a one minute voice mail, said thank you to the salesperson six times!!!
The salesperson was so elated by the call that he went further. He called the former liaison who had been reassigned to another area to thank her (and identified a future opportunity) and called one of his own teammates on the account to say thank you. Goodwill leads to more goodwill and more good sale
Another important thank you, from a senior, is also often overlooked. Ask your senior to make a thank-you call on your behalf and to express the organization’s commitment. Be sure to concisely prepare your senior. Enlisting the support of seniors in key situations will not only strengthen the client relationship but will also strengthen your internal relationship. And, of course, be sure to call and thank your senior. The holidays are a perfect time to make relationship calls, say thank you, and extend your best wishes for the holiday.
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