A few years ago, we were all working in our office when a local company stopped by with a box of bagels and coffee for us. We didn’t know them, but they were reaching out to local marketing companies to let people know they exist (they were photographers, so potentially a good partner). They seemed nice, and it was a sweet gesture!
That afternoon, I connected to a few of them and looked for a time when we could chat further. They never replied, and never reached out separately. I still don’t understand how they were so organized and thoughtful to bring the food, but then completely disappeared.
I’d love to chat
Another time, also a few years ago, I attended a business luncheon where one of the sponsors was a local independent realtor. While we don’t often work with realtors, I certainly enjoy making those connections as you never know what might happen. In fact, she said “Please connect with me on LinkedIn and I’d love to meet any of you for coffee”.
I did, and suggested a few days/times, and… nothing. I’ve seen her at other events and we’ve had good conversations, but she never replied to that message so I didn’t push it. Again, though, this was someone that went though intentional effort and expense to create these connections, and then failed to follow-up
Follow-up can be bad
Of course, repeated follow-ups can be bad. I get spam daily from people that say things like “ Hey, just bumping this back to the top of your inbox so you can call us for all of your blah-blah needs! “. That’s spam, that’s annoying, that’s bad.
It can also be a little frustrating at times. If we’re working with a client and need a photo from them, we trust them to send over the photo when they get around to it. Many times, of course, we have to follow-up a few times with reminders. It’s not that they’re intentionally forgetting to send, but in most cases it’s a chaotic inbox that makes things hard to keep up with.
There is one person I know that when I email her, if I don’t hear back within a few hours I just need to try again later. Her inbox is so out of control that once the message gets buried behind a few more, she’ll never get to it. It’s not a good look.