It can be frustrating when you invest your time and energy on potential clients who have requested information but haven’t responded back. You’ve heard that expression, if you do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got. This request-response-wait model is time consuming and an unproductive use of time.

It is important to change the cycle you’ve created. Many business owners (new and seasoned) fall into the trap of responding to information requests and never hear back.

Keep these tips in mind as you change your process/approach:

1. Develop a system where prospects self-select as preferred clients.

Face it. Not everyone who requests information from you is your preferred client. It is important to pre-qualify your prospects so that by the time you have a conversation, they know all about you, have seen testimonials and results from other clients, and your message clearly helps them self-select. You must be very specific about your preferred client. Many business owners are not utilizing their website to help pre-qualify; however, when you do, this process saves you time and energy.

2. Ask questions in the pre-qualification process to find out what your client really wants/needs.

Some entrepreneurs try to squeeze in a conversation from a prospect as soon as that prospect calls. You’re doing in injustice to the prospect and to yourself because you haven’t given the prospect appropriate time and you may not be fully present in the conversation as you think about the next appointment you have scheduled. When the prospect calls, ask if they’ve been on your website (assuming you have a pre-qualification process in place.) Schedule a meeting with them after they’ve reviewed the pre-qualification area. Send them a pre-qualification questionnaire they complete prior to meeting with you.

Often times, businesses who offer services, make the mistake of guessing, after a short conversation, what the client needs or wants. Find out specifically their short- and long-term goals. Ask them what they want “it” (the “after” picture) to look like after working with you (or your solution/product.) With a carefully constructed self-select and pre-meeting questionnaire, you can identify the solution together making the conversation more productive and helping your prospects make an educated (and often on-the-spot) decision.

3. Schedule a follow up meeting.

Many business owners fail to schedule a follow up time with their prospects leaving an open-ended, “I’ll follow up with you” statement. Without a date, it doesn’t happen. Set expectations up front and set a specific date and time for follow up so each of you are utilizing your time and energy efficiently.

4. Propose clear, simple options, and Keep It Super Simple.

Don’t cloud your programs or packages with complexities. Use the KISS method – Keep It Super Simple using bullet points and short sentences to describe the benefits. Remember to:

a. Give options so that the prospect has a choice. You don’t want to have only one solution or package – it leaves the decision with a yes or no (and go) option.

b. Provide a range of prices so that if the prospect simply can’t afford a certain-priced product, you have other choices where they can still work with you.

c. Name your packages. Don’t use “the $8,500 Program.” Call it “Fast Track or Premium Package” and respond to the package by its name.
Successful entrepreneurs realize that they must execute the right plan, the right process and right system to see profitable and sustainable changes in their business.

Successful entrepreneurs realize that they must execute the right plan, the right process and right system to see profitable and sustainable changes in their business.

Author's Bio: 

Lisa Mininni is President of Excellerate Associates, home of sought-after The Entrepreneurial Edge System. For additional information on how to seal the deal and take a systems approach to profitability, visit and remember to sign up for the next free high-content teleseminar, Get It, Got It, Go! The Entrepreneurial Edge.