You call your dream client and say, “I’d love to stop by and introduce myself, tell you a little about my company and how we are helping companies like yours, and learn a little about you and your business.” The approach you use to schedule a meeting doesn’t produce anything close to the result you need. Yet, you continue to use it.
Your dream client has asked you to send them a proposal and pricing. You write an excellent email, including the proposal they requested and your pricing. You expected them to respond to the email, but it’s been two weeks, and you have heard nothing. In fact, of the ten proposals you’ve sent by email, none of them have ever gotten back to you. Yet, you still email the proposal and pricing.
Last year you didn’t produce the results you wanted. You didn’t do the prospecting you needed to through the first part of the year and fell behind. You were unable to make up the lost time, a pattern you have repeated more than once. It’s almost February, and this January looks a lot like last January.
Your current sales process, when followed perfectly, results in a win rate of 28%. The salespeople change over time, but the win rate doesn’t improve or decline very much. The process has been in place so long that no one ever questions whether it still serves the company.
Experiencing the same challenge over and over without changing your approach makes the failure to achieve the result solely your fault.
If your experience tells you that your language choice and the value you offer to trade in exchange for a meeting isn’t compelling enough to get a “yes,” your resistance to changing your approach will ensure you continue to create that challenge.
When sending your proposal and pricing by email causes your prospective clients to go dark, adhering to the client’s request is proven to be a bad sales practice. The blame here lies in your unwillingness to confront your prospective client, explaining how this approach doesn’t serve them.
The lack of disciplined prospecting is a similar choice. You know with an enormous amount of certainty that you cannot make up for lost time when it comes to creating and winning opportunities. If perfect execution gets you a 28% win rate, it might be time to look at the process to determine whether it still serves you.
If you repeatedly experience the same problem, you can anticipate that problem and develop a strategy to eliminate it.
There is no reason not to say, “I am happy to send you the pricing and proposal. Before I do, I need to walk you and your team through both to make sure it’s perfect. What’s the best time this week to have that meeting?” When you hear, “Can you just send it to us, we’re swamped,” you say, “I am afraid I wouldn’t be taking care of you if I did that. You are going to have questions and concerns, and just like when you are a customer, I’ll be here to make sure you have everything you need. I promise I won’t waste your time. You say when, and I’ll put a 30-minute meeting on my calendar.”
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Filed under: Accountability