Lead Systems – A Sure Way To Increase Business
Do you have a follow up system for your leads? Does it look a lot like the photo on the left?
A shoebox where you throw all the business cards you collect. You have every intention of sorting them out later but later never comes.
As the immortal Tom Jones sang, “It’s not unusual, it happens every day, no matter what you say.”
Basically, we’re lazy. However, the fortune is in the follow up. So having viable lead systems that you find easy to use become critical to building small business success.
Lead Systems – The Fortune Is In The Follow Up
Having a super simple follow up system is going to be critical. There are plenty of ways you can follow up as part of a small business systems strategy. But if the system is too complex, you or your employees are not going to make good use of it.
When starting a small business, you really don’t have to run out and buy SalesForce or some equally expensive CRM (customer relationship manager) software or service. Sure they sound like a great idea, but like any tool, if you don’t really learn to use it well, it becomes just another gadget or seemingly good idea that you don’t have time to learn to use.
In the beginning, it’s perfectly acceptable to create lead systems from the tools you have at hand.
Something as simple as an Excel spreadsheet with contact data, notes, dates of contact, proposed follow-up and more will work. Many people start out using Microsoft Outlook to catalog contacts and calendar to maintain some sort of follow up system.
If you have that shoebox handy, you can go even more old school with lead systems. Create monthly dividers for your shoebox. When you have collected business cards from a networking event, attach them to index cards and write notes about your prospect. Simply file the index card behind the date you’ve already agreed with the prospect to follow up or date in the future you intend to follow up. Once this system is rolling, you only need to check the calendar date within your shoebox and DO the follow-up.
If you have an assistant, virtual assistant or family member that supports you in this role, they can keep your lead systems organized and create your follow up list each day. A solopreneur doesn’t need to spend a lot of money on fancy software and services to stay organized though those systems do have their advantages when used properly.
Electronic systems can send you email updates and reminders to follow up. In essence, they can check the box for you. Any lead systems, no matter how simple or how complicated, require human input to make them work. We’re back to that laziness problem and basic garbage-in, garbage-out issues that could hamper your success with any small business lead systems.
In the end, you have to be diligent, organized and thorough, no matter what follow up business systems you decide to use. But the bottom line is this: No lead systems – No business growth.