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Industry Spotlight > Women in Wealth

Two tips to survive a bad economy

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1. Call your customers: For this idea, I like to use the example of the furniture industry. In that setting, why not have the sales people make a few calls to their customer base to say hello rather than just standing around talking to each other waiting for someone to walk into the store. The phone call could go something like this. “Hello Mr. Jones, this is Hal calling from XYZ and I want to thank you for your purchase of the couch. If you were to buy furniture for any other room in your house which room would you be thinking about? It would be great if you kept us in mind…thank you.”

That same salesperson should be calling their customer at least three times per year just to say hello and hope they are enjoying the furniture and say nothing else. No sales pitch, just a thank you call to keep their name in front of the customer.

2. Call past customers: If a salesperson left the company, who is staying in touch with the customer? Usually, no one or the customer now goes to a “house account.” The newer salespeople could acquire these customers and also stay in touch with them by simply stating “Hello my name is Hal and I am now taking over for your past salesperson. How has the (insert product or service here) been working for you?” I will be in touch from time to time to make sure that you are still a satisfied customer of ours, have a good afternoon, and thank you for your past business.”

These types of phone calls can be done by almost any type of business, and not just retail.

Imagine if your doctor left you a voicemail saying “Hello, I was just looking at your file and thinking about you, and I hope that you are feeling well and still watching your weight and cholesterol. See you on your next visit!”

Almost any industry can make customer follow-up phone calls, but very few companies and people actually do it with any consistency and regularity. Trust me, if you start doing this ASAP, you will find a loyal customer base and satisfied customers or maybe even dissatisfied (which you can now help) due to your efforts and two-way communication.

Hal Becker is a nationally known speaker on sales and customer service and is the author of two best-selling books “Can I have 5 minutes of your time?” and “Lip Service.” He can be reached at

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