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How to Get E-mail Addresses From Prospects and Clients

March 8, 2010
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E-mail is a very cost-effective way to advertise to your clients. Heck, it’s practically free. But the dilemma sometimes lies in getting your client to give you their e-mail address.

E-mail is a very cost-effective way to advertise to your clients. Heck, it’s practically free. But the dilemma sometimes lies in getting your client to give you their e-mail address.

You surely want to collect e-mails as prospects call for information and as clients book appointments. Your biggest obstacle may be getting your receptionist to ask for the e-mail. A few negative responses could lead her to believe people don’t want to give out their e-mail.

And it’s true. People don’t always jump at the chance. But all this can change depending on how you ask for the e-mail address. It’s your job to train the people answering your phone to ask correctly.

Don’t just say, “Can I have your e-mail address?” The first response will be “NO” much of the time.

Always Give a Reason Why
First, give them a reason why you need it: “So that we can send you a confirmation for your appointment and some tips on how to get ready for our service, what is your e-mail address?”

You’re giving them a good reason. Then, you’re making the assumption they will give you their e-mail. There should be no hesitation in your voice. Kind of like, “Oh, by the way, what was your e-mail address?”

Tell them what you want to do with their e-mail address to put your client at ease. If there are any objections after you tell them, let them know you would never spam them or sell their address.

Be honest with what you will do with their e-mail. If you are going to put their name in an auto-responder e-mail newsletter, let them know they'll be receiving periodic e-mails from you. This will greatly cut down on complaints.

The same type of questioning works for prospects who are gathering information on the phone and not quite ready to book an appointment.

Before you get off the phone, say, “We have some detailed information about pet odor removal (tile cleaning or whatever you were talking to your prospect about), if I could get your e-mail address, I’ll send you the information right away.” This works great to give your prospect an extra bit of information on how you can take care of their problem. And since most cleaning companies don't do this, you'll have the advantage.

If they’re even remotely interested in hiring your company, they’ll give you their e-mail. If they’re not interested, they weren’t going to buy anyway. Send them on their way.

The main idea is to get over the fear of asking for an e-mail address. Yes, some consumers are scared to give it out. They fear you will spam their e-mail box or sell their address to another company. If you hear any hesitation on their part, always assure them that their e-mail address is safe and they can easily choose to stop receiving e-mails from you at any time.

Have an E-mail Newsletter “Opt-in” Box on Your Website
This one is kind of obvious. Have a box that offers some sort of bribe or reward for opting in to your e-mail newsletter. Perhaps give a coupon or free gift simply for opting in. Gone are the days when web surfers were willing to sign up for an e-mail newsletter just for the novelty. Most everyone wants to avoid more e-mail. So you have to give them an offer they can't refuse.

As a last note, tell them you’re out to make friends, not enemies. You wouldn’t do anything with their e-mail address other than send an occasional special offer, cleaning tip, or newsworthy information.

If they disagree in giving the address out, so be it. Respect their decision. Just book the job and gain a new customer.

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