What is the mindset of most salespeople when they close a sale?
Be honest, if you are like 99% of people in sales when you close a sale you consider your responsibilities are over.
Most salespeople think, “I’ve done my job. Time to move on to the next thing.”
To be fair, in some companies you technically may not have responsibility for the account or relationship once the sale is made. Perhaps the account is handed off to an account manager or a customer success manager.
Even in those cases, where the responsibility passes to someone else in the organization, there is something you can do to put you in the top 1% of sales professionals.
By now, you probably expect to learn a groundbreaking tip or a new system to put in place, but it is nothing new, and it is not complex. It is one simple step.
Follow up with the customer.
I am not talking about calling to say “Thank you for your business.” Nor am I talking about a nice handwritten note.
You need to have an honest conversation with the customer to make sure the commitments you made during the sales process have been met by you and your team. And here is the hard part… then you listen.
Your follow up call can begin with a few simple questions;
“During the process when we talked about the problem we’re going to solve for you, I made personal commitments. I committed my company to do some things that are out of my reach personally. I want to know, how did we do? Did we meet your expectations? Was there anything we missed? Are any of our commitments still pending?”
You are looking for closure for the commitments you made to the customer. Did you deliver? Did you do what you said you would do?
In short, you are simply asking “Did I do what I said I would do?”
Your personal credibility with that organization and the buyer will become the foundation for long-term business. Even if you will not manage the account after making a sale, this is important. This simple step will give a good start to the relationship with the customer. And you give your counterpart or peer, who is inheriting the account, a solid launching point to build on the relationship.
Can you really set yourself apart with something so simple?
Think about your experience as a buyer. How many times has a salesperson followed up with you like this? In the last ten years, I have experienced this two, maybe three times. It is rare.
Usually, when you hear from a salesperson after a transaction, how often do they ask about you? How often do they ask if you as satisfied, or if they met your needs?
Instead, they may ask you for referrals. Or they remind you to fill out a survey, which is really about them, not you. Surveys are usually tied to bonuses. If a salesperson asks “what can I do to earn a 10-star rating?” they are not asking what they can do for you. Instead, they are telling you what you can do for them.
Try this today. Call the customer you last sold to. Simply ask “Did I meet your expectations?”
Listen to what they say. Act on what they tell you. Expect nothing in return.