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It might just be the most overused word when talking about success in sales; persistence. I hear it nonstop, more than Dilly Dilly. In fact, I’d say people are quite PERSISTENT about it…I’ll show myself out.
While I agree with the best of them that you have to be absolutely restless in this game of ours, simple “persistence” is totally missing the point if your goal is to actually make it big. What you need to focus on is this:
I know, I only added one word, but hot damn it’s a good one.
Before I started my own Sales Consulting business, I was running national sales for a global wealth data, analytics and research firm. Do you know how many pre-canned, dumb intro emails I received, only to be followed up the next week with an even dumber mea culpa trying to explain why I’m getting another one? Enough to write this article. (And not one of them received a reply from yours truly, but I’m a jerk)
If you’re doing that right now, stop, because it’s so mindless that you’ll either be replaced or the process itself will be eliminated. You’re paid to make connections and forge relationships, not do something a computer can do better.
In the hierarchy of what a buyer would want to hear about, it generally goes something like this:
3. Their interests
4. Their job
5. Their company
6. Their industry
7 — 199. Fill in the blank
200. Your product
Any generic email means the recipient is probably on some list that’s shared communally by the sales desk, which also means the scope is too broad for that individual to give a damn. It also means your product is damned, with me at least.
If your target audience is broad, refer to the above list. Find something out about them, their role, their interests, a recent news article about them or their firm, an industry article pertaining to them, a teaser of your product specifically geared towards their business/market, etc.
If someone reached out to me right now pitching one single research report about the common pitfalls of starting a consulting practice, they’d have me. Whether that’s their product or not. Some of that is timing, most of it is curated.
Do your research/your due diligence/your pre-work, to find out not only about your prospects, but which ones, in particular, should constitute the plurality of your efforts. I think someone’s said this before; Time is Money. Shooting out 1,000 emails a month may seem on the surface like activity, but it’s not going to move the needle nearly as much as Curated Persistence.
Bud Fox used Curated Persistence with Gordon Gecko. Maybe not the best example to use given how that baby ended…but you catch my drift.
Tell your prospects something, not anything. Curated.
Then tell them until they block you, file a restraining order and move off the grid to Zimbabwe. Or buy. Persistence.
On a totally unrelated note, most of you who know me know that my Dad is a famous DJ (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kid_Leo). Yeah, it sucks knowing your Dad will always be cooler than you.
Anyway, I thought I would end these articles by posting a song that I’m listening to at the moment. According to the Twitter account GSElevator, reading a book is “borrowing someone else’s brain”. If that’s the case, then listening to a song is borrowing someone else’s soul. And we can all use a lil’ more soul.
So…just had a prospect tell you to eat dirt? Just lost a deal to that shitty competitor? Start off the year at the bottom of the leaderboard?
Then listen here friend for some motivation. Song is “Off The Ground” by The Record Company.
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