The War Room

The old "Call me back in 6 months"

How often do you listen to the prospect?Β 

I know that I usually cut the time by 60-75% of what they tell me to do unless it is very clear about timeframe. Let me know your thoughts.


How often do you listen to the prospect?
Attached poll
*Voting in this poll no longer yields commission.
πŸ”Ž Prospecting
πŸ“ž Cold Calling
Sr. Account Executive
Unless there is a reason for the specific timeline or they are very adamant about it, I always cut it in half.Β Β 

Be very gentle about the follow-up.Β  If they say, "I said 6 months" just say "oh ok, I look forward to speaking then."Β  Β You may have pissed them off at that moment but you are also now top of mind when this project makes it back to the top of the pile.

I'd rather to early, than too late and miss the buying window.Β Β 

Stay Hungry!

Notorious Answer
Account Executive
First, I'll ask them "Why is 6-months the magic number?".Β  They are going to have to think on their feet. That's when you hit them with, "Okay, no problem.Β  I am putting this in my calendar right now, and I'll send you an invite." then just be yourself.Β  "(Prospect name), I know you didn't expect to speak with me today.Β  It's not my intention to interrupt your day, but rather understand IF (your company name) can (Insert most powerful action item here)."

"Before I let you go, is that something you're looking to prioritize in 6-months?"

After that, 1 or 2 things will happen - they will continue to try to get you off the phone OR, and more commonly, they suddenly have a few minutes to chat if your action item is strong enough.Β Β 

The key is being human.Β  Not railroading over their words to get every line of your script out.Β  If they stick with the 6-month plan, follow up in 5-months to confirm the meeting you did set in your calendar.

Never pass up a potential opportunity.Β  The timing really may not be right, for multiple reasons.Β  As I type this, you could probably convince them to a quarterly call cadence, at minimum.Β Β 

This does work - I have seen it happen over and over.Β  If you're throwing away your "call me back leads", go ask the top-earner in the office if they want it.Β  What do you think they would say?
Account Executive
I do the same. When they say circle back in June, I’m circling the fudge out of April. It’s better to be early than to be late.Β 
Inside Sales Lead
Same here. I have lost too many deals or opps when following directions.Β 
Mid Market Manager
I typically take the same time cut you illustrate here, but when I reach back out I find some other reason to do it and throw in the ole 'I know we agreed to reconnect in October but if you find this initiative needs more immediate attention, I'm happy to carve out time for a call' (Or something to that effect depending on my relationship with them)
Strategic Account Executive
I follow the request to call back in 6 months with respect to the sales cycle. However, if this is an important logo - I will find excuses to engage with them sooner. Typically, that comes in the form of a Press Release, Webinar, etc. that may be relevant to their organization.Β 
Praised Answer
Account Manager
That timeline is about right - however, if there is some objection that all the sudden the company/product has accommodated for/fixed before that - I reach out then with a specific call out to that.
WR Officer
up in Fiji, under paddy
Depends why they ask me to call back. If it's because they're hiring a new DM or in the middle of a huge project, I'll follow the directions. If it's just them being noncommittal, I'll call when I feel like I should call next.
Business Coach
What is going to change in 6 months?
Enterprise Account Executive
I think you can re-engage earlier but without including any narrative around the advancement of the opportunity. This is classic nurture. Come back at them with some research or an interesting article or a webinar your company is running. But I typically respect the requested time frames.Β 
Account Development Executive
I always like to challenge them and ask the question "Why not now and what would change within the next 6 months?".Β 

I only ask this if they have not been clear or clarified why in 6 months because otherwise, it's just a smokescreen to me.
Good Citizen
ENT Sales / Risk Management
I try to respect that timeline, but don't feel like there's anything wrong with sending a 1-2 sentence email with relevant news/content/company reports in the meantimeΒ 

"Hey, this just got released. Thought you'd enjoy."Β 
Pointed a prospect to a competitor. They came back 3 months later!
I just went on-site with a prospect for the first time in 18 months
changed jobs several months ago, old company calls to get you back, wwyd?