Customer sales follow-up: Gone fishin’

According to Brent Wilson at the B2B Marketing blog, pre-Internet marketing could be compared to deep sea fishing – like throwing a line out into deep water, with the right bait and waiting for a big fish to hook and reel in.

“The Internet has now changed the game of fishing for customers from deep sea fishing to fly fishing in a mountain stream for willey cutthroat trout.”

This isn’t a story of what marketing could do in the future, this is what is happening now … Marketing sends out an e-mail piece with unique urls personalized with the prospect’s name. E-mails are set up with cookies and tracking information allowing sales people to see when a prospect is on a certain url. The sales person gives the prospect a call – “I noticed you were looking at the online offer you received in today’s e-mail, can I answer any questions for you?”

I don’t know about you but I would be out of my seat faster than Speed Racer, poking my head above the cube walls, examining the office for strategically hidden surveillance cameras.

Marketing should be transparent. With regard to what your customers are viewing at this exact moment – remember, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Your follow up should be planned in a way that you won’t “scare off the fish.”

“So back to that cold mountain stream and the internet metaphor; You can now see the fish in the shallow waters as they approach your drifting fly and watch as they rise all with the magic of analytics, cookies and tracking alerts. You can change the type of fly to get the desired response just like you can change your offer or your message. But let em’ take it before you set the hook. The mantra still holds true… ‘you need to have patience.’”

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