August 31, 2016
It happens to all of us in every aspect of life- we know we should do something but we choose not to. Right? We know we should exercise more and eat healthier. We know we should reach out to that old friend. We know we should vote. We know we should make the time to volunteer and give back. But we don't. Instead, we focus our energies on creative rationalization and procrastination.
We do it in our professional lives, too. There are things we know we should do but find reasons not to. Don't agree? Not you? Maybe not. Let's put it to the test.
Think about your business, your practice, your clients. Here's the first question- in the past year, what percent of your revenues came from existing relationships? Half? Three-quarters? It was significant, wasn't it? In the real estate industry, for example, agents identify that upwards of 80% of all business originates from existing relationships. This trend holds true for the legal profession, consulting practices, and small businesses as well.
Now here's the second question- how much of your time, energy, marketing and sales effort is spent on your existing network? Not cultivating new relationships, not networking for new leads, but managing your existing network? Is it the same percentage as your answer for the first question? If you're like most people, the answer is a resounding "no." Most of your time is spent seeking new relationships, new business, new opportunities. "New" is always more enjoyable, right?
This is the epitome of the "knowing/doing gap"- we know most of our business comes from existing relationships but we spend our professional energy seeking growth not from what has driven our business in the past, but chasing the elusive new relationship. Across all industries, it generally costs anywhere from 5x to 25x more to acquire a new customer versus cultivating a relationship with an existing customer. This is where we choose to spend our time.
Guess what? Existing relationships want to continue to work with you. Here's a great case in point. The National Association of Realtors identifies that 88% of home buyers would recommend their agent to friends, colleagues, and family members. That's enormous, isn't it? Yet guess how many actually do? Only 25%. That's it.
The question one has to ask is "why"? After helping a family make an important, costly, and emotional decision - buying a home - real estate agents lose the overwhelming momentum they've created. Why? Simply stated, they don't generally tend to these relationships.
Yes, there's the requisite house warming present. And it's generally nice, right? And maybe you follow up a month or so later asking how the kids are settling in. And maybe at the one-year anniversary you send a card. Or have a card sent with your signature. But that's generally it, isn't it?
We know we should stay in regular contact with our existing relationships but we find reasons to make it difficult. Have you said any of these to yourself?
If so, you're not alone. These are very common rationalizations we make that prevent us from doing what we know we should be doing. And let's face it, you're really good at managing your current clients, relationships, and even leads. It's exciting and thrilling- it's the hunt, isn't it?
There's nothing wrong with this, every business needs new business. Marketers are trying to generate new leads and sales is trying to close new deals. But based on your own answers to the two questions posed a few moments ago, you know that there's a vast opportunity in attracting business through existing relationships. The question, then, is how do you do both successfully?
That's exactly why we built Contactually. We want to enable you to do what you do best- spend time with your clients. And let us do what we do best- keep you in front of your entire network while you're with your clients. Contactually enables you to be two places at once.
With a few clicks of your mouse your network of relationships is in the Contactually platform, available to you via any device at any time. By identifying your key relationships and selecting the frequency at which you want them to hear from you, Contactually then tells you, in minutes a day, who to reach out to.
"Contactually eliminated that overwhelming anxiety I get when I can't remember who I was supposed to call this week."
"I credit Contactually for helping me close three deals in the last two months that would have been lost had it not been for the reminders I receive from the system."
You have years of relationships. Maybe decades. That can seem daunting. Contactually makes it easy to get your contacts into a single place. Whether in various email systems, spreadsheets, LinkedIn, or even paper notebooks, organizing your most valuable growth asset - your existing relationships - is simple.
"I love the ease of use and the way that it has helped me get organized and manage the critical follow-up process."
"I am not a linear thinker, and the buckets are a system which makes sense to my brain. I'm contacting the right people at the right time instead of losing track."
Birthdays. Anniversaries. Market updates. These are the easy ones, right? Everyone does these so while they're easy, let's be honest, they're expected. And not particularly special. Contactually has created a robust library of email templates and ideas for you to use. You can also easily customize each one per individual if you choose. One template, dozens or hundreds of contacts, each getting a personal communication from you in minutes.
"Contactually turned my weakness - following up with people - into a strength... within a week."
"Contactually helps me send emails to cold leads--which is very difficult for me to do. The programs and templates have made it much easier."
Contactually allows you to easily and quickly deliver timely, personalized messages to as few or many people in your network as you'd like, each that looks and feels like it was individually sent from you in the moment. We help you put your best foot forward and keeping you top-of-mind to your entire network. Because if you're not in front of your contacts, you're not going to be the one they call or refer when the opportunity presents itself.
Think of yourself as a consumer, as a customer. Where do you go most often? Whom do you refer? The people, places and business that value your business and treat you well. Contactually brings that concept to life for professionals like you. Isn't it time you invest in yourself?