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The No. 1 Mistake That Is Costing You Sales

Bob Lachance
2 min read
The No. 1 Mistake That Is Costing You Sales

So, you’ve got a pretty solid lead generation strategy, and you’re trying to build a lasting pipeline. But do you have a follow-up process in place? Is it working?

You’ve probably heard the saying, “The fortune is in the follow-up,” right? There is a reason why it’s so popular!

Most agents expend a lot of their energy generating more and more leads. While ramping up business is important, it’s the next steps that really move your leads from the first phone call to the closing table. Having a follow-up plan is a critical aspect in the process to convert a lead into a sale.

Did You Know Only 2% of Sales Close at the Initial Meeting?

You can’t expect everyone to convert the first time you try and sell them something. If they do, there is a good chance they have already done their due diligence researching the product or service and sifting through the available options.

So, if you’re giving up after the initial meeting with no follow-up, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Check out these interesting statistics on how often individuals fail to follow up.

According to a study by Marketing Donut (1), the average sales follow-up drop-off rate breaks down like this:

  • 44% of sales reps stop following up after one rejection
  • 22% stop after two
  • 14% stop after three
  • 12% stop after four

That means 92 percent of people are done trying after the fourth “no.” So if you’re following up at least five times, you’re already way ahead of the competition!

Listen to this great clip about the importance of following up and how I implement my follow-up process with my team.

Implementing Your Own Process

A whopping 70 percent of all deals CLOSE through following up! Let that sink in…

If you don’t have a solid follow-up plan in place, you are missing out on more deals than you realize.

Everyone will have a different process for following up and how they want it done, but making sure you have one in the first place is the first step.

Remember, consistency is key!

Ensure you are consistent with your follow-ups. Track them and keep notes on your leads. These practices are surefire ways to be the first person a lead wants to contact when it comes time to sell.

Why Immediacy Matters

The ability to promptly respond to a lead is another key element of the sales process that often goes overlooked. We’re in the midst of the digital era, and many businesses are generating leads directly from the internet.

Online leads can turn cold shockingly quick, so it’s always best practice to try and reach the lead as soon as possible.

According to a study conducted by Harvard Business Review (2) that included over 1.2 million sales leads among 29 B2C (business to consumer) and 13 B2B (business to business) U.S.-based companies, companies that tried to contact potential clients within an hour of receiving the lead were nearly seven times as likely to have meaningful conversations with a key decision maker.

That’s pretty telling—especially when you’re trying to contact the decision maker about a property you’re interested in.

So, stay on top of leads and stay organized!


  1. https://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/sales/sales-techniques-and-negotiations/why-you-must-follow-up-leads
  2. https://hbr.org/2011/03/the-short-life-of-online-sales-leads

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Do you have any follow-up questions about following up with leads? 

Ask me in the comment section below. 

Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.