Does everyone that calls you book a job? Probably not - they probably reconsider on their own, realize the err in their ways and call you back later, right? Yeah, probably not. You need to be proactive in reaching out to these leads and convert as many of them as you can or you are leaving money on the table.

Every lead that contacts you costs you something. If you have a process to convert more of them into customers, your revenue per lead will go up, which puts more money in your pocket. So it makes sense to continue the conversation with prospects.

The Manual Way

There can be lots of reasons why they didn't spend money with you the first time they called. Maybe they were just curious about pricing. Maybe you couldn't fit them into their schedule. Maybe they want to move forward, but just needed to save up a little more money before committing to a new project.

Regardless of their reasons, they will soon forget about you. Hopefully you at least use email as a method to reach out to these prospects over time. How often and what types of messages to send to them vary by industry. Maybe once a quarter, launch an email campaign to all of your prospects reminding them of who you are, maybe throw in an offer for a discount, or maybe mention a seasonal special. The cost to do this is next to nothing other than your time so even if you only pick up a few customers, it's going to be worth it. And if you use's Email Campaigns add-on, you won't even have to mess with downloading and uploading your email lists.

Getting Automated

Periodic bulk emails are always good for throwing out a wide net on your prospect list. But for best results, you want to keep the conversation going with your prospects as close to the point of original contact as possible. If they hit you at the beginning of the quarter and then you finally do your email blast at the end of the quarter, too much time may have passed for your messaging to be effective. What you need is a way to communicate on their timeframe.

Enter Drips, the add-on for marketing automation.

Drips is made up of two components: Triggers and Campaigns. A trigger is how you detect different things happening in service** For example, when a new contact is added, or when an appointment is scheduled when a proposal is created. When triggers fire, you can then "do stuff" -- like send an email, create a task, send a notification to an employee or add a tag to a contact.

Drip Campaigns let you sequence actions over time. This is where the real power of marketing automation kicks in. By adding the time element, you can now cause actions to happen over time, which creates the effect of a conversation.

Some Recipes

Let's say you'd like to convert more tire kickers who call in into paying customers. The scenario is you add them as a contact, but then they don't schedule an appointment. When this happens, you want to send a series of 2-3 emails over a week or two to try and get them to call back and schedule a job, maybe with progressively better offers or discounts. You can do this with a simple campaign and a couple of triggers. First, create your campaign that sends the emails over the next few days or weeks. This is the "conversation" you're going to have with the prospect. The key element here is that you don't send the first email till after a few hours or days. This will give you time to make sure you don't send any emails to prospects who scheduled a job. If you send your first email right way, they're going to get that first email before you have time to schedule the appointment while they are on the phone with you.

The first trigger will be for when a contact is added as a prospect. That will start your campaign (which won't do anything right away because you have a delay on your first message). The second trigger will end that campaign for a prospect who schedules an appointment. So for the normal case of a prospect calling in and scheduling a job, nothing will happen. But for the case where they call in but don't schedule a job, you've now created an automated follow-up to convert them down the road. And your additional effort for those down-the-road conversions? None -- because it's all automated.

Another recipe would be to get more conversions from your proposals. While sends out reminders about open proposals, that may not be enough to tell your whole story. You might want to send a series of emails that describe your value, or maybe how the project will improve their home's value or enjoyment. So first, create a campaign with your emails. Spread them out over whatever timeframe makes sense -- one every few days, or every couple of weeks. Then create a trigger for when a proposal is created. That trigger will start the campaign for each new proposal you write. Then create another trigger that stops the campaign when they schedule an appointment or a proposal.

Automate Your Marketing

Drips lets you automate all of this. You can probably pay for it with just one extra conversion per month. And you'll probably get a lot more, so it's just free money waiting for you to do something about it. So... what are you waiting for?