News article

3 new and simple things you should do when a prospect ghosts or ignores you

From time to time we all get ghosted.

It might be a potential partner. It might be a friend. It might be from a prospective client.

You’re in the wrong place if you’re coming to me for tips to improve your love life!

However, I can help when it comes to prospective clients ghosting you. If you follow the tips below, you’ll increase your conversion rate, take on clients you thought were lost, and increase your firm’s income.

So, here goes. Ready to dive in?

Ghosting means you and the prospect both lose out

If a financial adviser/planner says they’ve never been ghosted, they’re lying (or forgetful). It happens to us all.

It could happen at a very early stage, where the prospect doesn’t reply after you respond to their initial enquiry. It might happen after an introductory meeting. Alternatively, they might ignore a proposal or fail to return documents you’ve sent them to sign.

Whenever it happens, it’s a pain in the neck. You’re potentially losing a new client and they’re missing out on valuable advice that could change their life.

Prospects are worth unsticking

I’ve heard some advisers/planners say that “ghosting” is a red flag and prospects who do it will make poor clients.

I’ve not seen any evidence to support that. Here at Yardstick, we’ve taken on some excellent clients who, for all sorts of very innocent and understandable reasons, ghosted us for a while.

Advisers and planners we’ve spoken with have said the same thing. In many cases, it was nothing more sinister or complex than the prospect being busy or life getting in the way.

Sometimes the prospective client realised they weren’t quite ready to engage with the adviser/planner and couldn’t find the right words to tell them for fear they’d harm the relationship.

As well as the prospect benefiting from your advice, there’s a financial benefit of waking clients up. By failing to try everything you can (including the three tactics we’re going to outline below) you will:

  1. Reduce your conversion rate
  2. Be less operationally efficient as a business
  3. Be forced to spend more money on marketing.

None of those are great outcomes, so we’ve never believed that sitting back and doing nothing, and waiting for the prospect to unstick themselves, is the right thing to do.

Instead, we believe you should take the initiative and mix things up a bit to restart the conversation.

Here are three practical ways to do that.

1. Use the Chris Voss “magic email”

You probably already know we’re massive fans of Chris Voss’ “magic email”. Over the years, it’s won Yardstick, and our clients, tens of thousands of pounds of new business.

To protect Voss’ intellectual property, we never reveal the contents of the “magic email”. You can find out what it is by clicking here and ordering your copy of Never Split The Difference. It’ll cost you £9.99 but your return on investment will be massive.

I know some people struggle with Voss’ email, often worried that:

  • It’s too blunt (it genuinely isn’t)
  • Prospects will react poorly to receiving it (they never do)
  • It’s rude (it’s the prospect that’s being rude by ignoring you).

We also need to remember that both the Voss email and Marcus Sheridan’s version (which I’ll explain in a moment) are your last throw of the dice when you’ve tried everything else and you’re still being ghosted.

2. Marcus Sheridan’s email

Marcus Sheridan is the author of the brilliant They Ask, You Answer and also has an email designed to wake prospects up.

Sheridan has talked about his email in public, in particular in this video on YouTube, so I’m happy to share it with you. Here it is:

Subject line:

“<insert prospect’s name>, assuming you found someone to <insert project name>”


“Hi <insert first name>

Just checking in after my previous emails, I assume you’ve found someone else to <insert area>?



When you send either the Voss or Sherdian email, one of two things happens:

  • It gets ignored – this happens about 20% of the time
  • You get a reply, which is always (in my experience at least) accompanied by a heartfelt apology and an explanation of where the prospect’s mind is currently at (either ready to move forward or consider an alternative) – this happens about 80% of the time.

I’ve never seen or heard of a negative response. Ever.

3. Use “new” in your emails

Now there’s a third option, this time from Andy Bounds, which he explained in his “Tuesday Tip” email last week.

Andy recommends simply using the word “new” in your follow-up emails, and gave some examples:

  • “Last week, you said you want to <insert their priority>. I’ve done some research and found three new things we can do to ensure you achieve it. When’s good for you for us to have a quick call to explore these?”
  • “I’ve had three NEW ideas about what we discussed. When shall we have a quick call to explore these?”
  • “Please can I ask your advice? It’s a question about <insert problem X>… I think I’ve found a NEW solution for us. But I’m not sure it will work and I’d love to run it past you. When’s good for you, for a quick chat?”

Andy believes that “new” works because it triggers intrigue and the prospect wants to know what’s “new”. It also raises their FOMO levels.

If you don’t receive Andy’s emails, do yourself a favour and click here to sign up – they are brilliant.

Getting the timing right

It’s hard to know exactly when you should deploy each of these three tactics.

I feel that “new” in your email correspondence with prospects should be used in your general follow-up/chasers.

That means you can hold back the Sheridan and Voss emails for your final shot.

As I say though, there’s no hard and fast rule. Play around with them to see what works.

But please don’t carry on with more of the same chasers (they’re clearly not working) or give up and move to the next prospect (that’s what most people do).

Instead, feel the fear and send the emails anyway. You’ve got nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

Tell me how you get on

If you’ve ever used the Chris Voss or Marcus Sheridan emails, I’d love to hear more about what happened.

  • Did you get a response?
  • Did the prospect become a client?
  • Have you ever had a negative response?

Call me on 07785 284429, or send a WhatsApp message to the same number.

Alternatively, email, as I really do want to learn more about how you’ve used these emails and your results.

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