If you have a form on your website that gather names and email addresses you’ve got a valuable trigger to build a relationship with a potential client. It doesn’t matter if this is an enquiry form, a newsletter form or a free download form – if people provide their email address there’s an opportunity.
The problem is that keeping track of dozens or even hundreds of completed forms is a major challenge – and could require a full-time member of staff (or several). So how can you build relationships without it becoming labour-intensive?
If you use an online data-management system that offers an autoresponder service you’ve got a powerful tool (and one many people don’t make use of). Online data-management tools include AWeber, ConstantContact, GetResponse, MailChimp (the paid version), Infusionsoft and many others.
If someone completes a form generated by one of these systems, you can set up a series of messages to be delivered at intervals of your choice. So you might have the first message to go out immediately saying ‘thank you for your enquiry/signing up to our newsletter’ etc. and telling them what to expect next.
The second message could go a few days later with an appropriate follow-up message. Then you can choose the intervals between messages, whether that’s daily, weekly, monthly or at random intervals.
If you have an enquiry form on your website you will almost certainly need a real human being to answer the question asked. However, as long as you advise them that you will be sending further information and provide the means for them to opt out, it provides an opportunity to stay in touch.
If people sign up to your newsletter they will expect to hear from you at regular intervals – or even irregular intervals!
This is usually a document that your target audience perceives to be of value – and to give the greatest value, it’s worth sending some follow up messages. These might be to encourage them to take action on what they’ve learned from the document – or additional value following on from the original free download.
There are other ways to gather people who may be added to your list of interested parties.
If you deliver any kind of training or run webinars you can set up a series of automated messages to remind people of the key learning points and encourage them to put them into practice.
If you have people who are one-off or occasional clients, you could ask them if they would like to sign up to a series of useful tips.
Staying in-touch with people who have expressed an interest in your business is a great way to ensure they don’t forget you and receive valuable information that creates reciprocity.