As a part of building a successful SaaS company, we focus no only on improving the first S (software) —so that it solves our customers’ need to scale and make their sales outreach smarter—but, on providing the last S (service), by helping our customers improve their own sales processes, including getting their prospects to show up to the appointments we scheduled, with the proper follow-up.
Below are some of the best practices we give our clients to help them increase their sales appointment rates.
Let’s start by identifying the reasons why a prospect don’t show up
- They don’t see what’s in it for them: Even if the objective of the call is to set up an appointment, right up front in the first minute of the call, you must be able to identify if the prospect is the real decision maker, expose at least one of the their pain points and exploit it so that they acknowledge it as a real challenge that needs to be addressed, and that you hold the answer to addressing it.
- They had a scheduling conflict: That you can control. When following-up, propose rescheduling the meeting so you can preserve the momentum of your previous conversation.
- They forgot: Even if you send a calendar invite immediately after setting the appointment and they even accepted it, prospects can still easily forget as you are not the only thing on their minds. However, there’s no excuse for you to allow them to forget about the meeting. Creating a pre-meeting follow-up schedule ensures the deal progresses forward.
How to follow-up with prospects after setting an appointment
What has worked best for our clients is consistent follow-up using a call/email combo. We recommend following-up at least twice before the meeting and keep the reminders interesting by sharing relevant materials or adding the value you anticipate covering during the call.
We’ve also launched follow-up call campaigns, where we call interested prospects to remind them of the meeting scheduled. It allows our clients to keep an active communication with their prospects and ensure a higher appointment rate.
The number of times and channels you use to follow-up prior to the appointment will depend on the length between the qualification call and the appointment.
The pre-appointment follow-up cadence
I send a first email immediately after the appointment is scheduled with the date/time of the meeting, the objective of the call, and any initial information I’ve requested from the customer (i.e. current contact database volume, KPIs, etc.) or any additional resources the prospect have asked me to provide or I think are helpful partner pieces to that conversation.
Even if the appointment IS a phone call, making a quick call can make the difference. You can say something like:
“Hi [Prospect Name] this is [Your Name] with [Company]. I know we have a call scheduled for [Date/Time] and wanted to see if we were still on for that?”
There’s 3 ways the call can go:
- Yes, I’m still OK for that time
- No, we need to cancel / reschedule
- I forgot about it!
If it’s option 2 or 3, you either had the chance to catch it ahead of time and work to fill that spot with a new interested prospect. Or, you can take advantage of the call to answer any additional questions and set the proper expectations, which might help to nurture your prospect even further, and shorten your sales cycle.
"Talk to you today" email
I send a second email a couple of hours before the meeting as a friendly reminder. I basically check if they’ve seen the invite, accept it, and if that time still works for them.
“Talk you in 1 hour” email
I send a third email 1 hour before the meeting with the points we will cover during the call/video call:
- Meeting details: date/time, and location if its’ a face-to-face meeting.
- A brief agenda: Intro, recap of main challenge, products that they’re interested in and questions.
Here’s a template you can use:
Hey [Prospect Name],
Before our call tomorrow, [Date/Time]. I wanted to share with you some video content we recently published.
You should've received a calendar invite. But, just in case I copied the details below.
Look forward to talking soon,
Subject Line: Our call today
Hi [Prospect Name],
*If you've already accepted the invite, great! You can ignore this message.*
If you have not yet accepted our meeting, It's starting at [Time]. Did you receive the invite, does this time still work?
If you did not receive the calendar invite please check your spam. If you did, would you mind accepting as a confirmation?
Looking forward to talking to you!
Subject Line: Our call in 1 hour
A friendly reminder - Our call begins in one hour. During the call, we plan to:
Looking to build a pre-meeting follow-up cadence using automated sales calls and emails? Talk to us and watch how your sales appointment rate rises!