Sales Prospecting for Long-Term Success
Copyright 2006 Frank Rumbauskas One of the biggest challenges facing salespeople when prospecting is that few, if any, new contacts become long-term possibilities for sales or networking. This is due to the fact that an initial contact usually ends at just that – an initial contact, and nothing more. Could you imagine how much more successful you’d be if you could take each and every cold contact you make while prospecting, and transform it into a long-term connection that remains in constant contact with you for the long haul? Think about it. Let’s say you currently make four hundred new contacts per month, in the usual manner, meaning you get a few appointments but nothing more. The first month you make your four hundred contacts and that’s where it ends. Next month, you make another four hundred contacts and they vaporize into thin air.
The third month, you go through the grind again. And so on, and so on. Now, think of what it would be like if you could capture those four hundred contacts and keep them in constant contact with you. After the first month, you’d have your four hundred contacts done. The second month, you’d have eight hundred in your permanent pipeline.
The third month, well over a thousand contacts are yours to own. At the end of a year, you’d have nearly five thousand permanent connections! Can you see how your sales would absolutely explode if you were able to do this? The good news is that lots of salespeople are already doing it with great success, and you can too. The key here is to forget about the old method of contacting someone, asking if they’d be interested in meeting with you, and then dropping them forever if they are not. What you need to be doing is asking for that person’s permission to receive a free, monthly e-mail newsletter from you that provides the prospect with valuable content that they can use to improve their business. Getting that content isn’t too difficult at all. If you are not inclined to write helpful articles about your industry, or about general business tips – such as time management, or how to increase productivity – then you can obtain content for free on the Internet. Just do a quick search for ‘Free Reprint Articles’ and you will find thousands upon thousands of articles that you can use in your newsletter. And the newsletter itself is not difficult to manage. Services such as aweber.com that I use personally are very inexpensive, they automate the entire process, and they take care of CAN-SPAM compliance by including an automated unsubscribe link at the end of your newsletters.
What about snail mail? This is effective as well, but the problem is getting your prospects to open and read the newsletter. It’s also expensive. Except for the twenty bucks or so a month that you’ll shell out for the e-mail service, an e-mail newsletter is free. The long-term effects of doing this are absolutely astounding. Imagine having thousands of prospects, in your target market, receiving your monthly newsletter. They will appreciate the useful content you will provide, and the best part is that your name will be constantly in their minds as the only person to buy from when the time comes! By publishing a quality newsletter, you are no longer just a salesperson in their eyes – you become a highly qualified expert in your field, they will begin to trust you as a business advisor, and that is what the very top of the top sales pros are to their customers.
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