According to an eBook on Expert Prospecting Tips from Witty Parrot, one in every two B2B salespeople are left to their own devices to generate leads, which creates a bit of a problem since buyers easily block their prospecting efforts. It is time for salespeople to look in the mirror and accept that there is a reason why this is happening.
“According to sales management, the salesperson’s ability or inability to communicate value messages is the biggest inhibitor keeping salespeople from achieving quota.”–SiriusDecisions
Can you really blame buyer’s resistance to dealing with salespeople? Their experience is, more often than not, a waste of their precious time. The inability to create a value message is at the heart of this problem. Feature dumps don’t cut it, and simply making more phone calls, sending more spam emails, or broadcasting your pitch to more people on social channels aren’t helping you. Your sales messaging has to change.
Today’s traditional sales approach is to broadcast communication that is nothing more than vendor centric sales pitches. That broadcast could be via the phone, email, social networks or during the sales call. Rather than breaking through the competitive noise and generating a return on effort, poorly crafted sales messages earn salespeople a place in the delete pile. Worse, they are doing harm to their professional brand and that of their company. You have one shot at making a good first impression throughout every stage of the sales process. Why wouldn’t you want to make it count?
Don’t do this!
Here is an example of an email I received recently that illustrates my point. It completely misses the mark, and frankly, I can’t imagine any decision maker agreeing to a sales meeting after reading it. Let’s see what you think.
XYZ Services is a technology services company which provides “CEO’s, CFO’s, Operations, Sales, and Training Managers” the ability to share content by educating, energizing, mobilizing, motivating, and training their consumers, prospects, and employees. Our new product called Whatever and Whatever are tools that will transform your business into focused energy! The link above is a “Manager” who conducted a Webinar Training on XYZ’s Educational Services. It was extremely successful for her and her business/company. I would greatly appreciate 15 minutes of your time to learn more about your company and how you currently communicate within your organization and if you’re experiencing the “White Water Mentality.” My goal is to help you get more Psyched up and in Sync! Do you need increased productivity, a wider audience, and more business sales? Let’s invest some time and see where WE can GROW together. Change is inevitable. Vision means rallying the troops! I look forward to collaborating with you soon!”
There are so many problems with this email.
For starters, I have no idea what this company actually does. Do you? Something about a content sharing platform that lets you educate, energize, mobilize, motivate and train people. Their service is supposedly for five different types of company leaders, but the message is not customized for any one of them. This email should really be five different emails with a message that is focused on what each leader would actually care about.
This dandy new tool will transform your business into focused energy, which sounds ridiculous and means nothing. The seller does attempt to include a success story, but there are no specifics about the actual success the manager supposedly had. Did she bring in new leads? How many? Did she secure meetings with 15 decision makers on her target list? What percentage of new business did she close? Specific metrics grab attention. By the way, most people will not click on links when the email comes from a stranger. Communicate value in the message assuming people won’t go and visit your website.
This salesperson wants a phone call to learn more about my company, which he could easily do by reading my LinkedIn profile. If you are going to get 15 minutes with your target buyer, you want to make that time count. Don’t waste it asking the buyer to educate you about their business. Do your homework and figure it out. Use your meeting time to progress the opportunity not halt you in your tracks.
This seller also wants to know how I communicate within my company and if I’m experiencing “white water mentality”. What does that mean? Finally, he ends his email with “change is inevitable” and “vision means rallying the troops”. Hum. Should I be insulted that he thinks I’m stuck in my ways and have no vision?
Stop with the nonsense.
This nonsensical email is filled with jargon, buzz words and lacks any clarity as to the value this seller can bring to my business. I have a picture in my mind of what a sales meeting with him would look like and it’s not pretty.
When crafting sales messaging, keep these tips in mind:
- Know your audience.
- Make the message personalized, focused and relevant.
- Skip the jargon and buzz words.
- Include metrics to support success stories.
- Get another perspective before sending the email or presenting your story.
If your aim is to source new sales opportunities, change your message. Focus on quality not quantity. It takes work to get the message right, and I believe this is one area where sellers can create true competitive advantage for themselves. So, will you?
Hey, while you are here, don’t forget to download your FREE copy of my Message Matters e-book from the home page. Learn tips for transforming those messages into something that works.