Imagine going to a great party. There is good food, good drinks, sweet girls or boys and a great vibe. You fell wonderful and relaxed. You start talking with strangers and meet some great people. You meet the one person, you wished to meet for a long time. You both understand each other and you agree to meet again. Months later you have time to meet your new friend, so you write him. But unfortunately he can’t remember you and politely declines. You forgot how important the first follow up is!
“Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love.” – Mother Teresa
Why The First Follow Up is Important
Of all the follow ups, the first is the most important one. During an event you get to know so many people. Likewise, all the others do. Even if you had a great conversation with a person, he will forget you without a follow up. You have to establish your name in his mind. You have to establish a way to stay in touch! If you try to contact the person after he forgot you, you don’t stand a chance to reconnect!
Connecting with a stranger without following up is a waste of time!
How To First Follow Up
There are no rules how to follow up. There are some recommendations:
Follow up soon after your first encounter, otherwise the other person will forget you.
Don’t follow up too soon. Wait at least one day. You don’t want to appear needy!
Use the persons name. If you don’t know the name, you should not follow up.
Don’t use templates. Every follow up should be honest!
Be brief to the point! Respect other people’s time!
Recall something from you first encounter. This will make it easy to remember you and revive you first encounter
Add value or show how you can add value to the other person’s life.
You can use the opportunity to invite your opposite, if you talked about an event and he/she showed interest
You can introduce your new contact to a old one. Again, you should have talked about it
Do it via text message. A phone call is (nowadays) too personal for the first follow up
Always express gratitude
How To Prepare The Follow Up
You can make the follow up easy and more powerful by preparing it. During your first encounter you can lay the groundwork for a successful follow up. Remember the most important networking rule. Ask: “How can I help the other person?” Once you know that, suggest to exchange numbers so that you can help. You add value and create the foundation for a relationship. You can lead your conversation towards your passions and hobbies, which is a transition to an invitation. With the follow up you can arrange the exact time and place.
Most of the times your follow ups will be successful and found great relationships. Other times people will not respond at all. Don’t expect from people to respond! Don’t take it as an insult. Don’t think of it as a judgment. Life is more complicated than that.
A couple of weeks ago I was in the park, smoking hookah with friends. A guy asked me for some tobacco. I insisted to build his pod. I gave him some tips and helped him to understand the process. He was impressed with my knowledge. I suggested we could meet another time to smoke together and then I would show him even more. We exchanged numbers and with the follow up I invited him to smoke with me. We became friends and he is a great source for original tobacco from Egypt.
I met some colleagues from a different department and we started talking about our free time. I told them about the poetry slams, I like to visit. They showed interest. With the follow up I invited them to a slam. They agreed and it was a wonderful night. We became friends and they helped me in a couple of situations. I provided fun and excitement and got in return their time and expertise.
Follow up or you will be forgotten!
Call on Action
Follow up with ever new person you meet!