Incremental Sales and the Art of Following Up

How much business do you get from customers after they’ve placed their initial order with you?

When I was 16, I worked for McDonald’s and one of the first thing they taught me was to “incremental sell” each customer by recommending one additional item after they placed their order.

I know that’s not a new idea, but let’s put a spin on it by doubling down on the process.

After the customer has placed their order and everything is set in motion, you should reach back out to the customer and follow-up with them first to give them a status update, and  second to explore for more sales.

Let me give you an example.

You’re a salesperson and you sell software systems.  A prospect you’ve been working on for months finally places their order and it takes a month of two for the installation process to be completed, etc.   After a week or 10 days, you contact the customer giving them a complete update and then ask them a question or two regarding another one of the big needs they identified to you during the selling process.

You’ll be amazed at the dialogue you will wind up having and the amount of incremental business you’ll get.

Too many salespeople wait too long before reaching back out to the customer.  For some reason, there’s a sales myth that states you have to wait until after the customer has been able to use and validate their initial purchase before you can sell them again.

I say that is garbage.

You spent time developing a relationship with the customer and you were able to uncover a number of needs — and you know you can help them.  Why not reach out to them?   I’ll argue that if you don’t reach out to them quickly, you’re doing them a disservice.

The benefit of incremental selling is all about you helping your customers succeed that much faster.

Copyright 2013, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.

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