A sale happens when you convert a prospect into a customer. But not all prospects convert. Some prospects say “no” (or they simply decline to buy or they abandon their shopping carts, depending on your sales funnel). You shift your focus to those who have said yes and you serve them to get them to buy again. Good idea.
But what do you do with the other prospects? With the ones who say “no”? Here are some ideas:
- Build a relationship with them. Take an interest in them. Follow them on Twitter, read their blogs, listen closely to them. Invest time in them as research into the mind of people who DON’T want your services.
- Look for common points among them to see why you are missing the mark. If they share a similarity, you can augment your existing product or create a new product to better serve them.
- Test different products – at lower price points or with different elements – and see what they buy. Don’t offer these products to everyone, just to the ones who said “no” the first time.
- Partner with another vendor who might be better able to provide a solution to their problem. Don’t just refer them; arrange an affiliate relationship so you can still profit from the ones who say no.
- Ask to put them on your newsletter or ezine list.
- Better yet, create a special “no” list that gets extra special treatment with plenty of high-value information and free samples.
- Get their contact information and revisit them a few weeks or months down the road. (I have several clients who started working with me after initially turning me down… they found another writer, weren’t as happy as they thought they’d be, and my email or call prompted them to reconsider my services).
- Stay positive, stay available, and invite them to contact you at any time. You never know: Their needs might change in the very near future.
While your customers are great to have, your “no” prospects can teach you so much about why people don’t buy… and they will often be the vocal minority to a much larger group of people who didn’t even bother going through the process to get to the prospect stage.