Saturday, November 26, 2016

BAMFAM (Book A Meeting From A Meeting)


Recently, while reading Eric Worre’s book, Go Pro, I was reminded of how important the follow-up meeting is to business. In this post, I would like to provide a helpful guide to the strategy of BAMFAM.

What is BAMFAM?

There are some who may be reading this and asking themselves, “What in the world is this BAMFAM?” Well, the answer is simple, BAMFAM is the acronym for Book A Meeting From A Meeting and it is a powerful strategy to follow up with prospective or existing clients, customers, and sales representatives.

Why is BAMFAM valuable?

The answer to this question really depends on your goals. What value would you expect to receive by holding another meeting with someone?

BAMFAM helps keep the calendar full of activity.

If you are in sales or provide a valuable service, keeping the calendar full of appointments could mean more money. Consider a barber, beautician, dentist, lawn maintenance technician, doctor, lawyer, or any other professional who gets paid each time you see them. If there are no appointments, then it probably means there are no opportunities to be financially compensated.

BAMFAM helps keep the sales process moving and ultimately prevents the loss of momentum.

I’ve heard through the years about the Rule of 7. In essence, the Rule of 7 suggests that most people do not hear a marketing message or consider seriously buying anything until after they’ve been exposed to the product or service at least 7 times.

While the following statistics appear to be referenced often by executives, speakers, authors, and bloggers alike, there is a growing number of critics that argue against its accuracy and authorship. For this post, I share it with you simply as a point to consider in support of the following-up.
  • 2% of sales are made on the 1st contact
  • 3% of sales are made on the 2nd contact
  • 5% of sales are made on the 3rd contact
  • 10% of sales are made on the 4th contact
  • 80% of sales are made on the 5th – 12th contact

BAMFAM creates accountability by putting an actual follow up event on the calendar.

At my job, where I assist university colleges, schools, departments, and programs establish a web presence, I find that BAMFAM helps ensure that we actually finish requested projects and tasks.

In business, as in life, people tend to have a lot going on at the same time. With so many competing projects and to-do items, it’s easy to see how folks get distracted and things fail to ever close. This is where BAMFAM shines best. As we bring a meeting to a close, I like to revisit “Next Steps” and then schedule our follow-up appointment or meeting where we will revisit homework from our last gathering. 

BAMFAM fights procrastination.

Have you ever found yourself or a friend saying the following, “Hey, we should grab lunch sometime!”

If we’re being honest, how often does that lunch date actually happen? The answer is rarely. People tend to have great intentions of getting together, but until that lunch is put on the calendar with an actual date and time, the lunch will remain just a good idea.

BAMFAM stops sales people from “chasing” or “bothering” a prospect.

One of the biggest complaints people have about salespeople is that they can be worrisome. They call at the wrong times, they leave numerous email and voice messages, and they just become a bit of an aggravation. Do you know what I’m talking about?

Another benefit of BAMFAM is that people who are in sales can follow up with a potential client or customer at an agreed upon day and time. Instead of “hounding” someone, a salesperson is simply following up on a request. The call or meeting is expected and individuals may be more prepared to ask questions, provide feedback, and ultimately open to suggestions on how to move forward. To a salesperson, this has to feel much better than chasing prospects. Wouldn’t you agree? 

When should you use BAMFAM?

My immediate response to the question, “When should I use BAMFAM?” is “always” and “right now.” This is especially true for things that you want to keep in front of you.

As I write this, I see BAMFAM in use all around us. Take for example the following situations:

Dentist Office

If you are a regular patient of the friendly neighborhood dentist, then you know that before you leave a regular cleaning or specific procedure, you are being asked to schedule your next “visit.” In the case of a dentist, this could be a follow-up cleaning or an appointment to get rid of the “yuck mouth” (aka cavity).

Church

Yes, I have found that churches are well known for BAMFAM, too. Take for example my own pastor, Matt Fry. During last week’s sermon, he made mention of a special Thanksgiving service on Wednesday, but made sure to remind all of his members (and guests, too) that we will continue our sermon series next Sunday morning. 

The opportunity for BAMFAM is endless

In this post, I’ve covered a few ideas and places one could use BAMFAM. Here are a few other suggestions for when to use it:

  • To review information you’ve shared with a client or customer
  • To connect a prospect with upline leader or 3rd party expert
  • To initiate a “game planning” session with new sales representatives
  • To establish a focused discussion on how to use a product or service
  • To help new network marketers create their warm market list and schedule a home party
  • To revisit customers and answer questions about their product or service
  • To get an edge up or touch up on a new hair-do
  • To get feedback on how college freshmen, transfer students, or new employees are settling into the new environment
  • To move a telephone conversation to a lunch or dinner date
  • To discuss weight loss progress with support group or personal trainer
  • To evaluate the success of pest control solutions
What other ideas do you have?

How to BAMFAM

At this point, we defined BAMFAM, discussed the value, and even shared some ideas on when to use it. In this section, I’ll share an example on how to BAMFAM.

While at a meeting, before you and the other person(s) leave, make sure to review your next steps. This could be considered homework or to-do items, it could be answers to questions, more information, or any number of things. Immediately following the review, pull out your calendar and suggest two alternative date and times.

“Bob, thank you for such a productive meeting today! In reviewing my notes, I see that you want more information on our widget and that you would like to talk with an existing customer. What I will do is get that information out to you today. Let’s schedule a follow up meeting to discuss that information in detail or answer any questions that you may have. I am open Monday at 11 am or Wednesday at 2 pm. Which one is best for you?”

If available, the person should pick a time. If not, they will suggest some times good for them.

The main idea behind BAMFAM is to move people from one exposure to the next, from one meeting to the next, from one event to the next, from one blog post to the next, and from one service call to the next. In the short, the goal of every contact (or exposure) is to schedule another contact (or exposure).

With that written, never leave a meeting without a call to action (another meeting). As smarter people than me have said, “The fortune is in the follow up.”

Next Steps

I hope you found value with this post. If so, please leave a comment in the discussion area below and share it with someone who you think may find value (friends, co-workers, or your team).

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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