It’s all in the follow-up

Remember 1

Follow up. We hear it a thousand times. If you go for a job interview, make cold calls, or deal with a business for just about anything, it’s apparently crucial that you follow up.


Well after that initial contact — that initial great impression — the person you met with gets busy doing their everyday thing. And unfortunately, they start to forget things. Even that amazing conversation they had with you. Or even if they don’t forget, they get a follow-up call/email/letter from another candidate, and your brilliance suddenly becomes out-of-sight and out-of-mind.

Here’s a quick and easy follow up method. Hopefully it will work, even for the laziest among us:

  • Before you head to the interview or appointment, address and put postage on your thank-you note’s envelope.
  • During your appointment, start thinking about what you’ll say in your personalized follow-up note. For more ideas on how to accomplish this, take a peek at this Freelance Switch article on following up.
  • As soon as you get home, write a personalized handwritten or typed note. If your initial communication was via phone, write a follow-up note before the end of the day.
  • Using some type of reminder system (Outlook, tickler files, cellphone, calendar), set a date no more than a month in advance to send another follow-up note. This one will be similar to the first “thank you” note, but it should mention how excited you are to eventually work with them.
  • If you’ve gotten no negative remarks, go ahead and schedule another note that goes out during a holiday or something similar. The point is to stay on your prospect’s mind in case a gig becomes available.

In my experience, the most difficult thing about following up is committing to doing it. If you’re pretty good at following up with potential clients, what’s your secret? Do you have a different method to share?

23 Responses to “It’s all in the follow-up”

  1. tom says:

    Thanks so much you are right on the money, I have no doubt that forgetting to follow up has cost me money and more

  2. Billy Liu says:

    Thanks for your your kind is very nice idea to have a follow up note…..i am a businessman and meet a lots of customers,but,to be very frankly,i never do follow up work,and always wait for customer back again,pls do not laught at me,maybe i am a laziest businessman.thanks fagain for your kind advice.

  3. In most cases, following up can mean the difference between getting a sale (or a job) and not. I totally agree with you. I have often forgotten to follow up after interviews, and never got those jobs. Maybe it was related or maybe it was a coincidence, I don’t know. Other times, I think I tried too hard in my followup letters and came off as desperate. I’ve found that a quick, casual followup is usually best.

  4. tom says:

    follow up is a important thing. it can bring you 200% more sales than without follow up. thanks for sharing
    .-= tom´s last blog to set up your home business =-.

  5. Eren Mckay says:

    Following up is something that I sometimes get shy about. I guess if I make it swift and casual it won’t be a problem for me. Thanks for this.
    All the best,
    .-= Eren Mckay´s last blog ..Carrot and sweet potato soup =-.

  6. Got to agree.. Following up is really very important thing. I really liked the idea of personalizing the follow up note .. so that the interviewer can remember exactly who I am ..instead of just handing over a pre-written standard note. Thanks
    .-= Conversion Vans´s last blog ..Conversion Vans – Used Conversion Vans – Conversion Van Accessories: Partners =-.

  7. This is some good advice. Hopefully, many fresh graduates will see this info before embarking on their interviews.

  8. So true! Especially for job interviews. People should also realize that there is a time line in which you have to follow-up, if you wait too long the follow-up seems forced or like you forgot about the person.

  9. Two thumbs up to this article. Lots of my clients are 80% results of a good follow-up since it gives them the impression that I am serious on doing business with them.Cheers to you!
    .-= small business resources´s last blog ..Dec 9, Small Business Grants Tips =-.

  10. Tim says:

    You are so right. I have been really slacking in this, and it results in no sales for me. Thanks for the kick in the backside.
    .-= Tim´s last blog ..Twilight and the Bestiality vs. Necrophilia Debate =-.

  11. Yes, I agree, although I would suggest not affixing postage or addressing stationery until you are sure you want to work with the person who just interviewed you.

    I think it’s important to remember that you are interviewing the company as well as the other way around.

    With any other attitude you become a beggar, and that’s not the kind of image you wish to project.
    .-= Gaston and Marie´s last blog ..New Product: LEGO 6958 Android Base Exploriens Space Station and Vehicles =-.

  12. Kevins says:

    Follow up is very important. Very often we start something that could be great but fail to take the next step or complete it.
    .-= Kevins´s last blog ..a list of great hubpages 🙂 =-.

  13. perfume says:

    i have go through this very experience when I firstly send my article to a local newspaper. They did not publish as I did not follow them up.

  14. Jenny M. says:

    Yup, follow up is essential in any business undertaking. We must not kid ourselves into thinking that our transaction is first and foremost in our client’s or interviewer’s mind, and that he’ll never forget us. Fact: he has better things to focus on than you. So follow up.
    .-= Jenny M.´s last blog ..Cheap Popcorn Machines =-.

  15. CFD Trade says:

    The most difficult in my case to do the follow is my feeling that is telling me that it might be annoying to follow up. There may be a thin line that separates perseverance and nuisance

  16. Great blog! You should post more often…when you’re not busy writing for others!
    .-= The Business Coach for Moms´s last blog ..Separating Yourself From The Pack =-.

  17. Chrismatnic says:

    Following up on something is absolutely necessary in any kind of business making, job interview, etc. If you dont follow up you will never know if you were good enough or what you can change for the next time.
    .-= Chrismatnic´s last blog ..Logitech Bluetooth Headset – Logitech Bluetooth Earset For PC & Mobile Phones =-.

  18. Great ideas Theda,

    Often, we forget that we’re actually helping the customer by ‘following up’ on an opportunity. However, we are usually afraid that we may be seen as pestering them. I’ve often called a potential client with a follow-up and they’ve actually thanked me for the call – because they’s be meaning to call me (but never got round to it).

  19. “Follow up”-A must do for business people. But this requires a lot of time & dedication. Nice Advice you have given, I’l surely try this one !

  20. Myhammer says:

    We can also have a computer software or a system which can do our follow up work quickly if we need it on daily basis via emails etc… that would save lot of our time..

  21. Richard says:

    You won’t make any sales if you don’t follow up. You may get a few lucky sales here and there but nothing great.
    .-= Richard´s last blog ..Google Fears Facebook and Your Facebook Ad Credit. =-.

  22. Sometimes following up can seem so pointless and like you’re being more of a bother than anything else, but it really is well worth it to get in the habit of following up whether it be for a job or to close a sale! Great advice.

  23. HI!
    Those sound like great ideas!! I’m going to try some of them right away. Thanks

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