3 Words That Get Silent Prospects to Respond

You speak with a prospect who tells you he/she is interested in your services. You’ve contacted that person many times (all the while using the 3 P’s of prospect follow up – Persistence with Patience without being a Pest) with no answer…now what?

Are they no longer interested? Are they just busy and will get back to you eventually? Were they just saying they’re interested to be nice? What the heck is going on?!

In sales, it is not uncommon for this to happen. We take pride in the services we sell and it can be confusing when prospects don’t show the same levels of enthusiasm. Not to mention, there is usually a quota or number we are trying to hit, and this sale could be THE ONE!

Persistence is key. You want to stay top of mind and be a resource for any questions or concerns. But when they stop responding, you’re left wondering what to do next.

My daughter faced this situation a few years ago with a potential job offer from an executive in a hotel with whom she worked on a project. This lady said, “If you’re willing to move to Ft. Lauderdale, I’ll hire you on the spot.” Jamie had never considered that kind of job or that kind of move before and wanted to learn more about it. The executive instructed her to reach out the following week for an in-depth conversation but after sending a few texts, emails and leaving a few voicemails- Jamie received no response. 

Jamie described the feeling as being somewhat like a breakup. While they were together, it was great; they laughed, got to know one another, confided in each other, but then, no answer to calls, texts or emails. And, like a breakup, my daughter was left wondering if it was something she said? Was she being too clingy? Why wouldn’t this person respond? After all, 3 weeks of silence did send a message.

Here is the voicemail Jamie left which got her a response in 4 minutes.

“(Name of executive), this is Jamie, we met at ________. Are you OK? I’m not sure if you’ve been receiving my messages, but I haven’t heard from you in weeks and am starting to get worried about you. Please give me a call back or send a smoke signal to let me know you are OK.” Jamie also sent the same message in a text, and FOUR MINUTES LATER the executive responded, “I’m so sorry!! I promise I will give you a call back soon!”

I recommend using the “Are you OK?” message but only after several (non-pushy) attempts are met with silence. It has worked for me 100% of the time. And, the responses never takes longer than 48 hours. The simplicity of these 3 words carries concern without irritation and without pushing to the point of being a pest. 

Here’s the catch: you can only use this message once with any one person!

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