How Much Follow-Up Do You Do?

Call me a sales contrarian, but when I have tasting appointments I thank people for coming, encourage them to call me with questions, and say goodbye.

What I generally don't do after that is call, email or direct mail them. I personally HATE it when I have an appointment with someone and they call me afterward. If I have a question I'll call them. If I want to hire them I'll send the contract in.

I've had clients tell me that they didn't hire someone because they started getting calls from them after the appointment to ask if they'd made a decision about who they were hiring. I can understand that...If I don't want to hire someone having them call me isn't going to suddenly change my mind. It feels like I'm being pestered if I get follow-ups, so I don't do it to other people.

I know that there are plenty of people who disagree with me, and that selling techniques say that you should follow-up and close the sale. Problem is, the psychologist in me hates being manipulated, and I especially hate when people use "selling techniques" with me. So again, I don't do it to other people.

The people who try to get you to "trust" them by using your first name every other sentence drive me crazy. The emails that won't stop because research says that X number of contacts are necessary before you make the sale drive me crazy. The people who call to "make sure that our service exceeded your expectations" drive me crazy. Believe me, if it didn't I'd let you know. And since you just interrupted my work and made me answer the phone I'm annoyed by you now.

The farthest I'll go is to email someone after an appointment if there's something that we had talked about that I said I'd clarify. But I consider that basic customer service, not "selling."

To me, too much follow-up also feels a little desperate. When I get someone calling to "check in" every other day I get the feeling that they really, really, REALLY need my business. Which makes me nervous about why they're so depserate for business. Which makes me not want to hire them.

I know that I'm in the minority on this, so what kind of follow-up do you do, if any?

 Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at and