Editor’s Note: At the end of this post is Chad’s accompanying video. I think you will find is interesting to compare the impact of Chad’s points as he tailors his content and style to another medium.
Remember when you used to fax people for meetings? Neither do I. But we still call. And email. And tweet. And InMail. And fax? I hope not. Prospecting today is easy compared to thirty years ago because we have so much access.
But how do you get a prospect’s attention? As access has become more abundant, getting attention has become a challenge.
Creative sales people are more important today than ever. We all get “channeled,” or over messaged via email/phone/social. I get calls DAILY for a company I created years ago pitching me credit card processing…the site never took credit cards. I’ve asked to be removed, my info gets resold, I get more calls, I answer, they ramble without breathe, and 45 seconds in I’m begging them to stop. My personal email? A vast wasteland. I’m channeled.
Two months ago, I received the same email from my local cab company from THREE different reps. Channeled.
It’s inevitable. Contact information is easy to come by, but tools to truly manage it are still maturing, and we’re only 20 years into learning how to live in this new world of so many vehicles of communication and an endless amount of commercials from them. What are we going to do, STOP advertising?
It’s not about the means of communication or number of attempts per channel. Often it’s simply about setting yourself apart. Back in 2010, I was selling to Enterprise-level accounts in the digital media space. The impact statement our leader asked us to try was a bit played out: “We create X amount of revenue in Y time. Let’s talk.” We did our research to apply our numbers to their facts. The same leader suggested a unique channel FedEx (great idea), but a unique channel didn’t correlate to a resonating statement.
Our impact statement was, “based on my research it costs you money to NOT use us,” but that impact statement was stale. Not in its fact, but in its presentation. The digital media space was getting louder and louder, and that message didn’t break through the noise….so I tried something.
One of my targets was Lego. Same impact statement, same channel, but the estimated revenue we’d drive based on our research was spelled out in Legos. I literally created the number using a green lego back and pieces. We met within a week.
My creative message style said, “I don’t take myself too seriously, I am thinking about you, and I can come up with unique solutions.”
Was it blind luck? Nope.
Another example. Played out avenue (email), same tired impact statement, new target. I discovered he was a Vikings fan. I’m a huge NFL geek and sent him a scouting report breaking down his team (with pictures in PowerPoint, of course). The final slide compared our product and his current solution to the difference between the Vikings’ success with Tavaris Jackson vs. Brett Favre.
We met within two weeks. My scouting report was dead on, by the way; quality counts.
A channeled world is a double edged sword for sales folks. Do we have a growing number of ways to contact potential clients? Sure. But are we the only ones using the channels? Of course not. With so many of us clamoring for attention, it’s clear that the creative will flourish. Old goal: Make contact. New goal: Make contact resonate.
(Now watch Chad’s message presented entirely differently — tailored to video:)
- Why Big Words Don’t Work
- Q&A with Mike Schultz, Co-Author of Insight Selling
- Five Tools for Social Business Success