A LinkedIn message in my inbox invited me to contribute to an eBook on ways you can prospect without having to make cold calls. I declined the invitation.
There are already too many voices telling you that you don’t have to do what you need to do if you want to build a pipeline, increase the velocity of your client acquisition, and win your dream clients. These voices have been so loud for so long that what they preach has decimated some sales organizations, who now have a passive sales force waiting for opportunities to come to them. They have hurt salespeople, and they have taken money out of their pockets—and out of their family’s pockets.
Some of the voices have talked down cold calling as a way to sell fads that, like so many sales silver bullets, have never lived up to their overhyped promises. They set up cold calling as a straw man so they could reach salespeople and sales managers with new offerings that would eliminate a part of selling that can be difficult for salespeople. They sold their leaders the idea that a new communication medium would replace all of the others, even though this has never before happened (the phone didn’t replace face-to-face meetings, and mass media advertising and marketing didn’t replace the phone, and nothing yet has replaced word of mouth and referrals). All we have ever done is add new mediums.
Others have trash talked the telephone as a way to get attention, using an anti-phone bias to collect leads from struggling salespeople and their managers. Lead generation is important, but trying to help people avoid what they need to do to succeed, to take care of themselves and their families, and produce results for their companies and their dream clients, is contributing to a problem that has now reached epidemic proportions.
All methods and mediums for prospecting work, and some are faster than others. But for speed, nothing yet exists that beats the phone.
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