A reader got in touch with me recently about an issue that lots of us have run into from time to time: Her email prospecting campaign was attracting attention and responses, but most of her prospects weren’t interested in buying right now. While getting some response should be better than none at all, your success in sales is dependent on making something happen. Besides, there’s no guarantee that prospects will remember you later, so it’s your job to create immediate interest.
In other words, to become the top salesperson, you have to learn how to put more prospects in a buying mood.
In my experience, there is one surefire way to grab a buyer’s attention: Focus your prospecting activities on a specific trigger event. In other words, don’t try to interest them in your products; instead, offer a solution to a business issue that they’re facing right now, or likely will be in the future.
Trigger events can come in a number of varieties, but what they all have in common is that they force prospects to think about changing the products they buy, or the way they do business. For instance, one of my IT clients is currently talking to their customers about data backup and disaster recovery, since flooding is a big story in the Midwest. Another is mentioning that they can help firms to be more compliant with federal information privacy guidelines in the medical industry. New products and technologies, changes in legislation, or economic booms or down turns in specific industries could all be trigger events, as well.
In each case, the value of recognizing a trigger event and using it in your prospecting efforts is that it stops you from talking about your solutions, and gets you talking to your prospects about issues that really concern them – their problems. Show them that you can help find the answer to the challenge that would have otherwise kept them up at night, or make them more profitable through a process they haven’t heard of yet, and you’re bound to find an interested listener.
The easiest way to make a prospect interested in buying now isn’t to tell them more about what you sell, but to give them answers to problems they already have. Remember that, and be on the lookout for specific trigger events that can help you demonstrate the value you bring.