A while back, I was hanging at home on a lazy Saturday morning when my cell phone beeped with a text from the mom of one of my daughter’s friends. She was checking in to see if my daughter was coming to her daughter’s birthday party that afternoon.
Turns out, I never got the invite. And if she hadn’t taken the initiative to follow up, rather than just assume we weren’t coming, my daughter would have missed the party. A party to which her friend had informally invited her, and talked about non-stop, months before in school. A party to which most of her friends were going, making memories they would then talk about (again, non-stop) in school for months to come.
And let me tell you, missing out on all the swimming and trampolining (yes, I know that’s not a real word :)) going on would have been devastating to my then 6-year-old girl.
Thankfully, we didn’t have plans that afternoon and were able to grab a quick gift and head over for the festivities. Crisis averted!
And then it hit me.
This type of situation happens in business. All. The. Time.
Biz owners spend hours/weeks/months (or potentially 100s of dollars) putting up an amazing free offer to generate leads and (fingers crossed) entice prospects to invest in their paid programs, products, or services. The freebie gets some nibbles from potential clients, who download with the best of intentions.
And you leave it at that. You don’t follow up with these new prospects. Never mind the fact that they obviously want and even NEED your help. You leave it be because you don’t want to bug people, or because you assume (and you know what that means, right? :)) folks got the invite to work further with you and just aren’t interested.
But quite often, those invites get “lost in the mail.” Not necessarily literally (unless you’re actually sending snail mail promos), but figuratively speaking. Maybe the prospects never get around to consuming the freebie, or they start reading/watching/listening but got distracted and had to stop halfway through, or they finished the freebie and aren’t quite ready to move to the next stage of working with you (yet).
Maybe, just maybe, they saw the invite but got distracted before they had a chance to sign up, and then flat-out forgot in the busyness of everyday life.
So the program/event/whatever you’re promoting might offer exactly the solution they need, if only they knew about it.
If only you’d sent a note (or several) to follow-up.
If only, if only, if only.
I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve sent one last follow-up email for that free webinar/paid program/etc. and received a flurry of last-minute sign-ups, many of whom went on to become active participants who greatly benefited from the info. And who would’ve never had the chance if not for those extra emails.
So, how can you get over “marketing shyness” (a.k.a. the reluctance to send follow-up emails)?
The next time you hesitate to send follow-up emails, ask yourself this question: What will happen if my ideal clients DON’T get the help I offer in this program/event/etc.?
What will happen if they stay stuck in whatever ails them? In whatever problem they were looking to relieve when they requested my freebie?
What will happen if they don’t reach the goals I know I can help them reach? How long might they stay stuck in their misery?
Chances are, your reluctance to follow up is about YOU, and your own feelings of doubt or unworthiness. But that’s not fair to the people who NEED you.
In asking the question(s) above, you start to shift the focus from you to your clients, and what you can do for them.
Which is where it should be anyway.
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