Jeff Shore, Founder and President of Shore Consulting, Inc. and a top-selling author, joins me talk all about follow-up. Listen and learn how to provide value that helps the buyer stay informed until they are ready to engage.
Andy Paul 0:00
Hey friends, this is Andy. Welcome to Episode 756 of Accelerate, Sales podcast. Joining me this week as my guest is Jeff shore. Jeff is the founder and CEO of the Shore Consulting Group. We’re going to be talking about, how do you follow up with the buyer who isn’t ready to move forward? And how do you follow up like to maintain that connection and providing the value that helps the buyer stay informed until they’re ready to engage. Okay, let’s jump in today’s show. Jeff Shore, welcome to accelerate.
Jeff Shore 5:59
Thank you. So much always good talking to you, Andy.
Andy Paul 6:02
It is great. We should do it more frequently. So, you know, on your website, you have this celebrity closing persona quiz. And so I encourage you to go to jeffshore.com and check it out. Actually, I took it a couple times. So you go through and you have a series of what seven questions or something like that, that you answer. And then you see who your celebrity closing lookalike is, so to speak. Yeah. And so first time I was Jerry Maguire I took it seriously the first time. I was Jerry Maguire. Yeah. And then I took it a second time and and I was The Wolf of Wall Street.
Jeff Shore 6:44
Are you okay with either of those responses there?
Andy Paul 6:48
Yeah, love Jerry Maguire. I thought that was great. Very well. Talking about somebody you know, his whole manifesto is coming up with it. Right. This is a human business and we got to treat people, you know, the thing that you I love talking about is the human aspect of sales. Yeah, Jordan Belfort not so much enough. Yeah. But that was interesting. So, you’ve got a new book coming out, right?
Jeff Shore 7:12
Yeah, I do my seventh book. This one is all on sales follow up and you know what happens after that initial appointment. And it’s something that I’ve always, you know, thought about. I’ve taught you have to answer but if you do a Google search and you just write it just type in sales, follow up books, you’re not going to get a lot of hits right there. And so I just wanted to be able to take what a lot of really smart thinkers have said in the past and add my two cents and put it together in something that was that made it easy for people to get into something that was otherwise it can trip people up right follow up is one of those things that a lot of people struggle with.
Andy Paul 7:54
But why do they struggle with it seems like natural right? I breathe in. I have to breathe out if I make a sales call. Why? Have to follow up. Right?
Jeff Shore 8:01
It probably starts with just that the driven salesperson likes the input, the psychological input of the Yes. Right. So the instant gratification, we want to move very quickly and need a sale now. And when you look at follow up, it’s one of those things that takes a while. So you don’t know, when your effort is going to pay off or if your effort is going to pay off. It is like marketing. You know, someone said that only 10% of marketing works. And the problem is we can’t figure out which 10%. Yeah, that was the same thing with follow up. We don’t really know which follow up is going to hit and which is not. And maybe there’s just that little control freak nature in great salespeople that says, I don’t like feeling out of control. I don’t know if this is going to work or not. And so then maybe they stopped doing it altogether.
Andy Paul 8:52
Well, yeah. So let’s define what you mean by follow up specifically. Is this like, Hey, you know, I’ve had my first conversation with the buyer. And I don’t follow up on that, or I get a lead. I don’t follow up on that or all of the above. What are you referring to?
Jeff Shore 9:07
Yeah, what it really comes down to is, from the moment a customer says I want to think about it. So this isn’t really part of the discovery phase. It’s after I’ve gotten to know the customer, it’s after I’ve had that discovery, after I’ve presented to them a solution and even asked for the order. But we don’t get a yes right then, now we’re going to go into the deliberation. Now we’re going to go into what our options are maybe even shopping around a little bit. Now how do I keep that conversation going and progressing and not just to keep it alive until they hopefully say yes, but actually to make it stronger and stronger as we go on. So whether it’s before we’re actually asking for the business, is going to take you know, weeks, or months and enterprise sales, or if it’s a one shot deal if you’re selling a car or a home or whatever it is, what happens when that customer is not giving you that firm commitment, how do we keep this alive and build the value in the sale until they say yes.
Andy Paul 10:05
Okay, so really how to follow up when the deal sort of loses momentum?
Jeff Shore 10:11
You know, it could very well be well, let me put it this way. If you don’t follow up, it’s going. Right. But I mean, there’s no question and I know that we’re like minded about this, that, the emotion is making that decision. And it’s supported by the logic. And what happens is that the longer we stay as a buyer, the longer we stay in a buying cycle without making a decision. The more we get unmoored from that initial emotional impulse and then we’re trying to make a completely facts based analytical decision. And even you know, Daniel Kahneman, the founder of behavioral economics is when you rob people of the emotional impulse, they make worse decisions. And so we want to try and figure out how we elevate the emotional altitude and extend it throughout this process.
Andy Paul 11:01
What’s interesting he says that because that that is contradicted by Herbert Simon, who came up with the whole sort of maximizer satisficer categorization if you will. He said, look, you know, maximizers, they’re gonna look at every single opportunity, an option until they’ve convinced themselves that they’re gonna make the best decision. And his research was that, they did make the best decisions. Now, they’re also the most unhappy. Because there’s always gonna be something else out there to look at. Sure, but they did make the best decisions.
Jeff Shore 11:38
Well, okay, but this is the great irony, right? Like I am a total satisficer. My wife is a complete maximizer. So the two stores that she tends to shop at the most Nordstrom and Costco and what are those two stores have in common? Well, it’s easy to return stuff. So this is her maximizer mindset that even after she buys something she’s not really sure. I would much rather live in my satisficer world with the irony being that she is making a better decision, but I’m happier about my choice by the time we’re done.
Andy Paul 12:12
Yeah, generally happier than someone else. So let’s go back to this follow up thing because I find this very intriguing because, you know, if you get to the point where you have a what you believe is a qualified opportunity, and I’m just again speaking from my own experience in this part, of the reason you and I had once talked about, you know, operating with Finn pipelines and so on, is probably wasn’t able to do that as well. I had a qualified prospect they were qualified to buy what I was selling, and not some product like mine. They were qualified to buy my product. And yeah, something came up. They either had a question that hadn’t been answered yet, which is how I position objections to me, or you know, something come in their business that maybe could delay the decision. I was not going to follow up and not stay in contact, and so on, because we got this point because they’re qualified to buy from me, right? What in your eye, you know, based on your work on your book, and so on, what possesses a salesperson to sort of give up at that point?
Jeff Shore 13:27
Well, when I look at what happens here with a sales professional, who is committed to not selling something, but to making the customer’s life better, is that you came to me because you had a problem that needs to be solved. How can I help you to do that? That’s the person who is more likely to follow up because they recognize the problem, the person’s life has not been improved the way that they need to where that organization still has a deficiency over here. But if I’m only looking at it and saying how do I get a sale, what’s next and I get that commission breath going on, then that’s when we’re going to look and see if I don’t get the sale now, well, maybe the next guy that I talked to, maybe he’ll get it. And I sort of just forget what I’m going to do over here. So I think it’s really a palms down to try and give or my palms up only trying to receive that mindset of how you approach sales in general will probably affect the way that you’re going to follow up or not follow up. But I think the other side of it is that there is a stigma about what happens, how salespeople are perceived the obnoxious, you know, just “Hey you, just calling to check in and see if you’re ready to buy today because my visa payment is due” you might see it, versus the salesperson who really believes that they can add value to this conversation.
Andy Paul 14:49
So a couple angles on that on pursuers. One is the salespeople get in that position, then the end of the month starts approaching managers hovering over their shoulders. Hey, what’s going on? And they’ve invested all this effort to, I was like convinced but to authentically, you know, earn the trust of the buyer that, be transparent of their motives. I’m here to help you. And then it’s like, well, hey, we gotta go find out what’s gonna take to get that order closed this month? Well, they’re not ready to make that decision. Ah, that’s offering 20% I don’t think 30% and suddenly, in the mind of the buyer, you’re not that trustworthy anymore. You are just here for the commission.
Jeff Shore 15:30
Yeah. So, of course, the buyer can’t really trace that conversation back to the sales manager, which came to the president of that division, which it just all sort of flows downhill. All the salesperson hears from the leader is we’re not going to lose another deal, this stinking competitor over here, you’re going to do whatever it takes. And you cannot reasonably expect that a sales professional is going to take that type of a message and turn it into something that’s appealing to the customer other than we’re desperate we need the sale and then you’re one to step away from what’s it gonna take to get you to do business with me? Early in my career with the computer company, the managers had their own sales contest in the middle of the year. And at the end of that contest period, anything that wasn’t nailed to the floor got shipped and I suspect tables out of the the break room, it all got shipped to customers. But my branch manager was determined that we were going to sell this large upgrade disk drive and this is thousand dollars a megabyte at that time for the disk drive. Thousand dollars a megabyte, so $65,000 or 64 megabytes. But this cost firm he was just unhappy with us anyway. Right but the branch manager committed he was gonna sell one of these things in terms of my customer we had this day. We’re literally in the last month he had sent me out to the customers fortunately like a half mile away, drive out. Talk to the CEO is a big home construction company. Talk to you now. I’d go back pressure kicked me back again. This went back and forth. Finance told me don’t come back unless you get the order. That’s why I was miserable days of my life and we completely sour the relationship with the buyer.
Jeff Shore 17:33
Yeah. And even if you had gotten that short term win, which I assume you did not get…
Andy Paul 17:41
Well, he did kick me off his office. So I sat on his car in the parking lot so cliche, but I did have the car leaning against his car, right in the parking lot. And he finally literally threw up his hands when it came out that this was at six o’clock on a Friday night is like all right. Fine, how much off are you giving me? So then we gave it away on top of it.
Jeff Shore 18:04
Yeah. But it’s interesting, I think, you know, I remember we were having this conversation with the great Seth Godin we had on the podcast a couple years ago. And one of the things that Seth Godin said was, if you have to work that hard, with your negotiation, and your discounts, you know, you got to really look at the value in your product in the first place, because something is fundamentally wrong with your value proposition.
Andy Paul 18:28
Absolutely. Or there’s something fundamentally wrong with their business practices. Yeah. So I mean, I’ve seen companies that you know, they they’ll just ship quote, unquote, people see me doing air quotes, ship the product to, you know, a warehouse. Others are on the hook for it. But companies just play games with that stuff all the time, and it would have an impact on the customers. I mean, eventually They start saying, Well, if this is the way they’re doing business, right, why do I do business with them?
Jeff Shore 19:04
Well, this is one of the things that I approach in the book is that your perception as a sales professional, about your own value is critical to how you’re going to extend the value proposition. Because if you look at it, suppose you have a presentation, you asked for the order and for whatever reason the buyer is not willing to commit, right? They are, they’re still shopping for other options, or there are other decision makers involved, whatever the decision might be. So now if I started making up stories and looking at and saying, Oh, I know what’s happening here, they are going to come back to me on the price. All right, what can I do to get creative? And it’s very possible that this person just has questions that they need to answer of themselves, or there’s a legitimate life issue that took them off their trail for just whatever it happens to be. But meanwhile, I’m sitting back here when the salesperson absolutely expecting that the discount is the next legitimate step. And as long as you’re willing to do that, then you can’t help but communicate that you don’t believe in your value enough. Good luck trying to hold on to the value proposition when you’re not a believer yourself.
Andy Paul 20:06
Oh, yeah, no, you’re just setting yourself up for a discount for sure. So, give us some examples of good ways of following up in the situation. I have one of my own I’ve written about before I called it value added persistence, and or value based persistence, which was, yeah, we forgot this thing. This situation where it was a qualified prospect, you knew you had a great chance of getting the order when they made the decision, but for whatever reason, decision timeframe slipped, is just putting together a scheduled dates, you know, you set up a sequence or cadence where you’re gonna follow up with them. And every time you interacted with them, and that follow up, you’re giving them something of value that would further their deliberation, their decision making, you know, white paper could be whatever piece of content that could be a further small demonstration, whatever, right? And then you just said, Okay, well guess it’s never too late, 90 days, maybe I’ll have six follow ups all scheduled during that time, but everyone value based for them.
Jeff Shore 21:07
Right? Well, the value basis, the key words, right from the very beginning, if there’s no value to your follow up, please don’t follow up. And there’s no value to just checking in and seeing if you wanted to buy. So if I’m looking at it, that might be the end of the conversation, but it’s certainly not the beginning of the conversation. And so if you don’t have value to share them, I’d question whether or not you were creative enough to come up with some version of value because I don’t think it’s as hard as some because we make it out to me now when it’s all set these days, but the internet so simple, completely. So here’s the advice that I give to salespeople: go solve a problem that they don’t know they have. So if you get to know your customer, and you ask yourself the question, what are they dealing with right now? What are their issues? What are their problems that may have nothing to do with what you have to sell? But if you get to know them a little bit and understand their environment, then go somewhere else. They don’t know they have and oftentimes this can be in the form of, of education or insight. That’s pertinent. This is what’s happening. This is the shift. This was happening in this industry that probably will affect your industry go solve a problem that they don’t know they have. And that takes a little creativity, but not rocket science, creativity.
Andy Paul 22:20
Well, it also takes a willingness to continue to ask questions. And this is you, I think that you know, every time you interact with a customer, you start to fourth that you should do it in four things. One is you deepen the connection, you deepen your discovery, you deepen your understanding, and you deepen the value provided. And so, if we don’t get talked enough about but I think a great source of value for your prospects is, I understand, right, that you can say you’ve asked the right questions, you’ve confirmed that you have a firm understanding of those questions. That’s value in the eyes of the buyer. I am confident you understand and in this period where we’re a little uncertain about what our next steps are, that’s gold.
Jeff Shore 23:09
Yeah. Right. Well, and that’s absolutely right. And so it gives you that deeper understanding that deeper connection that deeper meaning that I am going to be able to connect with you even before I get the Yes, I think that that’s a huge I think that’s a significant change in thinking rather than to look at the prospect as a target or a lead that I need to convert whatever it is, what if I treated them like they were already one of my customers. So if we just think back not that very long ago to the very height of the Coronavirus and everything that we were seeing around the Coronavirus and, you know, like you had a lot of clients that were in in sort of panic mode and, and I had to look at that but like you, I also have a business to run, and we have prospective clients that we’re looking at working with. So I sat down and I recorded some videos for all of my key clients like, Hey, this is what I’m thinking these days, maybe this will help you get a little bit of perspective, just to get us through these really crazy times leading up to the end of that, and they just went, well, wait a minute, I just sent that to all my key clients, why am I not sending that to all my future clients? And so we just simply recorded and sent it out to people personalized to different builders, to different answers to different companies that we were hoping to work with, whether it was a home building company, whether it was a keynote speech, it was to be able to say this is what we can bring to you.
Andy Paul 24:41
And you have to remind us that you earn the right to send those types of mails and have people read them earlier on right. Because you talk about this inflection point about the follow up starting, not when you get to no but when you get a we’re not sure right. It’s too often that sales tools are like a breakup, right? You don’t like me anymore? Again gets back to if this is really a qualified opportunity. If you’ve really qualified this, these people are qualified to buy exactly what you’re selling. Then you’re nuts you got to keep your head about you, you can’t stay in the game, you got to stay in the moment and say, I’ve earned the right with them for them to pay attention to what I send them. I share questions I ask you because I want to keep asking questions to your point about solving problems. Yeah, they’ll listen to you. They won’t necessarily do that to the person who hasn’t earned that right.
Jeff Shore 25:43
Yeah, right. But if you hadn’t earned the right by that point, your sales process is so flawed that it doesn’t really matter.
Andy Paul 25:51
You’re not in the game at that point. That’s true. Yeah. Well, that’s such an interesting thing that that I try to impart to people is that a lot of times when people lose the deal, they don’t understand that they were never really in contention. And, people misinterpret the fact that buyers will talk to them cuz prospective customers will talk to them as yes, they are sincerely interested in what I’m selling. And in many cases, it’s just not the case. Right? And maybe you didn’t make a strong first impression. But they have other reasons for continuing to talk with you. I mean, they may have to be able to justify Hey, we got three bids for this thing or we looked at three vendors before we narrowed down to two vendors. You can find that out. You can find this out by asking the questions you can find this out by building this connection with the buyer. But a lot of times you’re just not in the game.
Jeff Shore 26:43
Yeah, I think that’s right. You know, it reminds me of one of the guests that I have from time to time on my podcast. I will bring on a frontline salespeople and I had a lady, her name is Molly, she’s in Reno, Nevada, and she sells cardboard boxes. Right? She sells cardboard boxes to people that need to ship stuff, right? And she’s not naive about this, she recognized right from the very beginning, if there was anything more of a commodity than a cardboard box, and I remember asking her the question, how would you value differentiate with a cardboard box? And she just paused and she looked at it, she goes, it’s a box, right? It’s just a box. And so the only thing that can happen here is for me to make such a deep connection that I am the differentiator. And so for her she recognized you know, I’m going to ask for the sale of course but I’m going to keep looking at what the industry that these people are in and keep trying to figure out how do I serve? And she said, I get most of my business because people end up looking at me and saying, I have heard more from you in the last six months than I’ve heard from my current box supplier in the last three years. And that’s all it takes to get it over so there is that idea that serves the first mental that’s going to be critical. If you don’t do that you’re not in the game. In the first place.
Andy Paul 28:01
Serve, don’t sell. Just earlier today I interviewed a great young entrepreneur named Mary Grothe who started up in the payroll business, right. Very commodity business. And yeah, she crushed it. And it was yeah, it was all about forming this connection, going the extra mile with the service being the point of differentiation in less than a hugely commodity business, just like cardboard boxes, and make yourself the difference. And I was the subject of my first book and a good chunk of my second book, just such a huge believer, it hasn’t changed. In fact, I am of the mind and firmly believe this, that this is actually becoming more important. You know, that your ability to differentiate yourself is as a seller on the surf initial point of attack. More important, it’s gonna become increasingly important. Do you think about what people said, or get automated selling, guided selling, AI driven selling and so on. But if you think about it, are people always going to have the same concerns. You know, there are AI driven decision making tools for medical procedures, I say that patients can access them. But the studies have shown that even though these AI driven tools, perhaps make a better decision, people want to hear from a doctor, they want to reason with another person, they want to talk it through with another person. And so there’s still a sense to say that we want to go that way. And our buyers are no different. They’re humans, there’s a risk factor associated with making any sort of purchase decision. They want to know that there’s somebody they can rely on they can trust has got the credibility that they have confidence and help them make that choice.
Jeff Shore 29:34
Yeah, right. Well, you know, here’s a mental framework that might help sales professionals out there. And if I could look at it and say, if they don’t buy from me, at least I want them to have the decency to feel bad about that. Right? I mean, the idea if I have somebody who doesn’t buy from me and then says I’m going to use this choice over here, I’m not going to buy another from another source. Whatever it is, and then I forget about the salesperson as if he or she never existed. That was a benchmark as to the quality of the relationship. You know, I have a rental home in Dallas, Texas that I decided to sell and I called a realtor in Dallas I’ve known him not really well, but we put him to work figuring out okay, well, what’s the home worth? And how is it going to work? And we’re going to do all this. Well, side by side, the sponsor for my five minute sales training videos that come out on Saturday is Open Door, which is a real estate company called Open Door. And as it turns out, I sold the house to Open Door and so now I’m feeling really bad. So this realtor and I said to my wife, I’m going to send him a gift card to Three Forks there in Dallas so we can at least have a nice meal. Right? And Karen was like he’s a realtor. That’s just what they do. They get the business sometimes and they don’t you don’t know anything. And I said yeah, but he did such a fantastic job. And that’s the idea if your customer is not going to use you? Do they at least feel bad about it? Because if they don’t, maybe you pull them short of doing everything you could do.
Andy Paul 31:07
I’ve never heard of it express it that way. I like that. As matter of fact, I’m thinking of examples of my own past experiences. Yeah, I’ve had some of those where I formed deep connection with a buyer who ultimately didn’t go with me. Sometimes they came back. But then I also think of the inverse of opportunities that more early in my career that I was just being used.
Jeff Shore 31:36
Now, at least get an email, right. Did you at least get a “hey, we’ve decided to do this over here. I can’t thank you enough.” Did we at least get that much out of it?
Andy Paul 31:43
Well, Jeff, this was well before email was available, so no, I didn’t. Yeah, it’s forced me to date myself. No, we might get a handwritten note occasionally. Yeah, I did. Once for my buyer that soon appreciated the effort and we ultimately did connect with him, he went to a different company. And this gets back to something we were talking about before is you have to always continually ask questions even if you really don’t want to know the answer. And that speaks to even. Are you really in the running? Right? Do you really have a chance to win? You’ll be told you can figure it out. If you ask enough questions, you can figure this out ahead of time and say, Look, maybe I just need to cut bait at this point in time. Yeah. And I think of some maybe the most painful loss in my career. I didn’t do that. I should have known better. I’ve seen it enough. I was running a team. Right. And this is a big deal. I think we just got so blinded by the potential that we just didn’t ask enough questions. And when they came down with their decision, even though we were far superior technically, I think we had a better place. Price, lower risk profile. They just had the connections, they had the ends at the customer we were in as well as like, you know, we were never seriously in the running on this one. It was a lesson, a mistake I never repeated again.
Jeff Shore 33:18
Why encourage sales people, after the conversation is over, you got the sale, you didn’t get the sale. But did you take the conversation as far as it can go? We’re not going to get them all but don’t beat yourself up if the behaviors were right there. We’ve spent so much time looking at the results that perhaps we don’t focus enough on the behaviors and if you did all the right behaviors, even if you didn’t get the sale, it still deserves a pat on the back. I know that the old school hard sell people are going to cringe when I say that, but it’s the behaviors that we’re doing. If we’re doing the behaviors right you’ll get the sale. But that’s what that’s the question we have to ask is did I do all the right things. Got the sale and I’m a winner or I didn’t a loser.
Andy Paul 34:03
That’s a great perspective. I work for a guy that was really big on that a CEO built a company. I was like, yeah, we shouldn’t have our sellers feel like they’re under that pressure all the time. Because A, it creates bad behavior. And B is, to your point you just made, you start playing the blame game, instead of saying, oh, and then that was his point precisely to us. Did we do all we could, you know, ethically, in order to get the business and if we did a good job, and we just happen to lose well, you can’t win everyone.
Jeff Shore 34:38
But I think the reason that mindset is important is that if you’re not thinking that way, then you get a sale and you assume you did everything right. And this is Daniel Kahneman talks about when we say that hindsight is 2020 it’s really not true. If we make the decision on the quality of the outcome not on the quality of the effort that went into the decision. So, you know, in a world that’s very predictable, I’m driving down the freeway and I decided to turn left, I’m going to hit a wall. Well, that’s a pretty predictable outcome, right? The world itself is unpredictable. So if we’re only making our judgments based on the outcome and not on the effort that went into the outcome, then we’re going to get blindsided and I think that that, you know, the idea of you got a sale and therefore all’s right with the world prohibits us from really learning Well, what did I do to get the sale in the first place? I’m not going to ultimately drive the wrong behaviors. And just one little quick analogy on when I first started playing ice hockey. I played defense. But at the end of the game, the captain, the team would always give a puck to whoever scored a goal. Well, you know, it wasn’t my job to score a goal. So then guess what happened there, I would start jumping into the play leaving my defensive position because I wanted to be recognized at the end of the game. So when we’re recognizing the wrong behaviors, we’re really going to get into trouble right there.
Andy Paul 36:17
Well, and that sort of runs rampant in several industries and companies, if you will, is, you know what they think specifically, certain companies have sort of reached me of the high growth phase where, yeah, they just have to be open for business. And they’re going to get a bunch of orders coming in, right? And then you get this whole strata of sellers who think, Oh, I’m really good at this, right. I’m all that. And then they go to the next company. It’s like, oh, why is this not working the same way? Sure. And so part of that point of bringing that up is you can’t believe your own press clippings. Yeah, I mean, more than anything else in sales, so you have to think to yourself, say I think just pretty good job on that. But yeah, I mean, if it came easy you didn’t think that, hey, we put the work on this it was this as a nothing against bluebirds. I mean, good leads coming in as bluebirds. If you can turn them down a good order, that’s fantastic. But if you didn’t really have to work that hard that high propensity that customers could buy from you anyway, on this inbound lead. Be careful what you think about yourself as a result of them.
Jeff Shore 37:34
The one thing that I talk about a lot of different methods of follow up and I think that we have probably come full circle in the idea that follow up used to be just about phone calls. And then people got sick of phone calls. So then we use email and then people got sick of email. So then we started the text and, now nobody makes a phone call anymore. And so you know, I’ve always been of the belief, you should probably be doing what your competition is not doing. I think the phone is fresh again, I think the phone is new again. And I don’t know about you, but the amount of junk calls that I get has fallen off a cliff over the last couple of years. And so there is that opportunity and it’s not a junk call. These are all really relationships there. If you’re doing your job, right, you’re already going to come up on their, on their identified on their phone, because you already have that relationship. So that’s the first thing I would suggest is that when we look at follow up so much a follow up is my CRM says make contact to hit send, and it’s gone. And it’s just another form letter. It just doesn’t it doesn’t resonate with us anymore. But that follow up call is new again. One other thing about this little device right here that is just the idea of video messaging, texting is really powerful in just a little 30 seconds spurts, to be able to give a quick message in there and be able to show some cool feature about your product, a client testimonial, somebody that you’re working with just a little tiny text messages, especially if you’re selling a product where your buyer base is getting younger and younger. They grew up in the video generation This is not weird to them. I think that video messaging should not be fresh, but it still is.
Andy Paul 39:28
No absolutely. I just recently interviewed, Steve Pacinelli from BombBomb. Yeah, video email. It’s great service. There’s other services like that out there. Yeah, you’re personalizing it in a way that that text and email standard email, others just don’t. And so it’s available. Why not use it?
Jeff Shore 39:51
Why not? It’s not difficult. It’s really not
Andy Paul 39:54
Well, they’re not difficult and also when you look at the data from BombBomb and other providers of similar type services. Yeah. To open rates, the response rates are substantially higher.
Jeff Shore 40:05
I don’t think this is really going out on a limb to suggest that you have salespeople trying to sell you stuff all the time. Right. And that right? Let me think about the number of video messages that I have received in the last six months. And I just a handful and they’re not from salespeople. They’re people that already know. So it just that opportunity is going to be huge.
Andy Paul 40:32
Yeah, well, that’s exactly what I had that conversation with Steve, their business is growing. But the penetration of video messaging is so thin still, at this point, the opportunity is huge right for us to adopt it and use it. And again, you personalize that. We have had other interviews, but you know, listen to my interviews on that. There’s just simple ways you can personalize video messaging, but yeah, you can do a text but it’s just I think has more impact to your point. It does. And things to think about too with follow up as another suggestion was just the you know, it’s been this whole growth of digital gifting. With companies that make it just dead solid simple for me even within Salesforce, if you need some they start off selling digital Starbucks gift cards but yeah, even something a little more substantive. It could be send cupcakes, could be some brownies, it could be something or non food related. Just that catches people’s attention and they say okay, they’re thinking about us. That’s cool, right?
Jeff Shore 41:39
And that’s the idea is that this is an investment into the ongoing relationship. That’s what follow up is and so when I look at follow up, I, again going with the premise that people make decisions based on their emotion, they support it with their logic and their analysis. Even maximizer says, nobody’s gonna look at something and say, I hate that. But it checks all the boxes. So I’ll take it. So we’re still going to make those those emotion based decisions? Well, I think the role of follow up is to extend emotional altitude. So when I’m involved with a salesperson, I’m looking at a product or a service in that moment that I’m involved in that my emotional altitude is at a high point. Now how do I sustain that, and the longer we go after that initial emotional peak, without that direct, personalized follow up, the more that emotional altitude starts to fall off the table, so you can really look at it and you can graph it and the job of follow up is to support that line is to keep it up here in that level of high emotional altitude. It was interesting I was at a conference and I was sitting next to somebody during a break, we were chatting and she was asking me what I did. I told her and she said, well, that’s interesting. I’ve written several books and she said, you know, you got any work? And I said, Yeah, I’m writing this book on follow up right now. And she said, thanks for sharing. And I said, What do you do? And she said, well, I take people’s money, and I give them time. I said, Excuse me? She said, yeah, that’s what I do. If I asked you that question, Jeff, what do you have more of time, or money? Now, look, I don’t consider myself to be rich, but I do, okay. But it’s a no brainer for me to say I have more money than I have time. He said, that’s what I do. I take people’s money, and I give them time. I’m a ghost writer. So you’re writing a book right now I can write it for you. I can write it in your language. Nobody will ever know you give me money. I give you time, and then you determine what to do with the time. Now in this conversation, I’m like, what a great sales presentation, right? I mean, it’s just fantastic. She’s interested in me, she’s got a solution for something. And by the end of that conversation, I’m like, okay, this is great. I told her I want to go back to my team and talk to the team about it a little bit. You know, I’ll be in touch. And then I didn’t hear from her. Right? I never heard from her. So I’m back at a conference. Three months later, I run into her again. And she says, Jeff, you, you never got back to me. There you go, then you put the burden completely on me. And within weeks, really of that conversation, the emotional altitude that I had was gone. And frankly, I haven’t thought about you much over the last couple of months. Yeah. And it was, and that’s the perfect example of what I’m talking about right here is watching that emotional altitude that seemed really strong when we were together on the phone and the presentation, fall off the cliff. And then what do we do we start making moral judgments about the buyer saying, well, the guy goes to me, he’s an idiot.
Andy Paul 45:00
I’ve got so one last example of for me, I’ve always thought it’s important to do a follow up call and that is calling the buyer after they give you the order. Sure. And people like well, no, that’s customer success. No, this is a sales thing because it’s the same if you’ve been in a competitive sales environment. When the customer puts their name on the paper to sign a contract, what they think they’re buying is an amalgamation of all the things I’ve heard from all the vendors. Yeah, even no matter how smart they are, there’s gonna be some level of confusion about exactly what they’re going to get. So for me, the most important follow up call you make is the one after they’ve given the order we say look, I just spent a few minutes I just want to review with you what just happened right? Right. You had these requirements. This is what we bid is reasonably bid at this is what you bought, this is what we’re going to deliver this is what you’re going to see when and then it’s like that emotional attitude as a trigger the thought we said emotional altitude, you’re going to keep that emotional altitude high. They cuz then when they receive what you sold them and they start implant that’s like, oh, that matches our expectations.
Jeff Shore 46:07
And during that expectation reset, I found this hugely critical. So if you’re in a situation where, you know, they’ve got that time that it’s in stages, there’s the opportunity from the back out and cancel the order at some point. And even after they say, yes, immediately, that anticipated regret, would jump in just because there’s the, Oh, no, what have I done? And you know, even as I’ve said, a couple of times people make the decision on emotion. Well, even if you’re in the purchasing department, you’re still motivated by emotion. It’s the emotion of did you make the right choice for your organization? Will the other people who are going to be using this product support this? I mean, there’s still emotion base to it. So when you say yes, if you’ve got the opportunity to still pull the plug, then what happens? You continue to churn after the fact and if there’s no support from the salesperson you’re absolutely right. Then the deal could still blow up on.
Andy Paul 47:02
Well and that’s why managers caution sellers not to make that call and they really should be urging them to make it for that very reason. Right, just as you said, you’re gonna solidify it because you’re going to reset the expectations and you’re gonna avoid the possibility of a hiccup as soon as you start delivering and the point okay, Jeff, fantastic as always, so your new book is coming out when
Jeff Shore 47:22
It’ll be out in July published by McGraw Hill pre orders available now, Follow Up and Close The Sale pre orders available on Amazon already.
Andy Paul 47:32
All right, Jeff, as always a pleasure.
Jeff Shore 47:35
Thanks, Andy. All right talk soon.