For a complete mind melt, lock yourself away for the holiday, and read how IOE will usher asymmetric information into our deal flow for the 21st century. Or, you can read my spin on the combination of these concepts, and what I am doing to solve for the challenge of the ever connected customer of the 21st century.
It is time for sales to start dating our prospects again
Ironically, when I started selling software, I was dealing with the same challenges I had experienced in my personal life. Noise! If I reached out to see if I could kindle something with a prospect via email, I was competing with 250 other vendors in their inbox. Voicemail! I tried Sundays, which has the same return as hunting at a church service for a date. There were months where marketing would give me some leads, but nothing steady, similar to a referral from a sister or brother, 80% of them were no good. I decided to apply some basic principles I learned in dating to my pipeline of prospects, with the end goal of consistency.
In information asymmetry, we learn that during contract negotiations when a customer is preparing to make a future purchase, they are already much further along in the sales funnel than they were a decade ago. With our marketing departments’ content rich with digital assets, our future buyers have everything they need to learn about our various services and product offerings at their fingertips. This concept of the ever-connected customer is further explained in “The Internet of Everything” by Dave Evans. As a result, it is much more difficult for us to manage the decision making process. By ‘dating’ our prospects, we create stronger relationships earlier in the sales funnel, enabling us to build the vision of a future business challenge that our solutions solves for.
Happy ‘dating’, and best wishes in the new year!