Following up with prospects is an important part of the sales process, and some salespeople even have systems in place to do so. While there is no singular program that works, some are more successful than others. Ken Corbin, in an article for MH Insider, reflects on the various programs he’s seen during his experience selling manufactured homes. Over time, he’s found one system in particular that works the best for him: The 9–3‑1 plan.
The premise, he explains, is that “you commit to follow up with a minimum of 27 prospects every day you come to the office.” They’ll be broken down as follows:
- Nine emails to previous buyers
- Nine telephone contacts, not just calls to previous customers
- Nine personalized letters via regular mail to previous customers
He explains that the system is easy to follow and guarantees that it will boost sales. The first step is to take a look at your calendar and start scheduling. Break each day down into five categories:
- Determine which follow-up notes and letters need to be mailed.
- Determine which follow-up emails need to be sent.
- Review the files and appointments you’ve made for the day.
- Respond to new emails and inquiries that have arrived.
- Determine what follow-up telephone calls need to be made.
Integrating these tasks into your regular workday might require some rearranging of your schedule, or even starting work a bit earlier. But Corbin assures readers that any schedule shifts will be well worth it.
Step two involves getting the written notes and letters written and sent out to prospects. Because we are all so used to email and other electronic messages, a mailed letter will definitely stand out. “Always include a business card and, if you are typing the letter, add something handwritten along the side of the letter to ‘personalize your message even more',” he suggests. Also, most importantly, end each letter with a call to action, asking the prospect when they would like to come tour a model. Finally, enter into your calendar the date for the next follow-up.
Check out his entire article for details on the next two steps (as well as why he calls it the “9–3‑1 program"). Corbin points out that once it’s integrated into your sales process, the entire follow-up system will become second nature. Plus, the benefits are worth it. If you stick to the plan, he guarantees “you will, at a minimum, double the number of sales you’re currently producing.”