I wanted to cover the common topic in our industry of prospecting. In our local paper, there’s a sales trainer talking about the key and the fundamental issue that prospecting is. Most of the consulting work that’s done out there, frankly, in our industry are ideas around this concept of prospecting and how a lot of people give up on this or they do it hit and miss. They don’t do it continually. He has a nice little piece in here that says it’s, “The fundamental task in a salesman’s job description, but vast numbers of underperforming salespeople are uncomfortable with prospecting. They dread the thought of it.”
One of the things we have to do is work with our own personalities, as I’ve talked about in the videos. One of my favorite things is using the cognitive bias of reciprocity. I’ll show you how I do that in this very same paper. You guys know that a lot of the folks that I work with are c-suite executives. I really focus on a couple of industries. This isn’t a prime example of an industry I work in, but it is the idea of using things like, “inside business.” It shows promotions, and it shows new people in your community and new roles that people have. In today’s a lot of them are people that are newly hired, and they’re not necessarily prospective clients for you.
There’s a gentleman in here today that is a c-suite executive in an industry that I would be comfortable targeting. He’s the head of human resources in this particular company. One of the ways I like to do prospecting is provided value first. For example, I would buy this person a book. There’s a really great book on human resources at Google written by the head of human resources. This gentleman in the paper is the head of human resources for his particular company. I would order him the book. I’ll have it gift wrapped with a note, business card in there. “Thought you might find some great insights into your new role in your new company. Love to visit sometime over a cup of coffee.” Something like that. He’s going to open it because it’s a gift. It’s gift wrapped, so it’s going to get to him which is half the battle in prospecting at this level. He’s going to get some value out of it, and he’s going to remember you.
That kind of prospecting tool where you use cognitive biases like reciprocity is really going to help you. It’s better than the cold-calling, the common meet-up groups, that type of thing. Remember the cognitive biases in all areas, but especially in prospecting and sales.