Prospecting Trends for the Sales Force

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Three salespeople left voice mail messages for me today. They were all cold calls, they were all bad, and they were all following up on brochures they dropped off last week. Nothing out of the ordinary here, as one of the callers wanted to know when our copier leases expire; one wanted to know when our commercial real estate lease expires; two wanted to introduce themselves as our new rep.

Why were they bad? Lots of reasons. They sounded bad, they were reading scripts, and they talked about what they wanted for outcomes from their calls, not what I might have been interested in. Additionally, I have always had a problem with the concept of dialing for expiration dates and following up behind brochure drops. That is not selling!

I also received 4 inmails through LinkeIn. I responded to the inmails but ignored the voice mails. Why?

The voice mails were easy to ignore – they were bad and the salespeople told me everything I needed to know in order to decide that I didn’t need to call them back. The inmails were about me, I didn’t get a chance to hear how bad they were, and I was interested in what they had to say.

The lesson here is not that salespeople should use LinkedIn inmails to replace phone calls, but they shouldn’t be ignoring the power of that social media tool either. The lesson here is that sending well-written inmails to carefully targeted prospects might help salespeople stand out and have a better chance of getting a response. Another lesson is that these days I get so few cold calls that anyone who is borderline effective will stand out. The final lesson is that at least these salespeople – both the callers and the writers- are being proactive – they’re doing something to drive new business!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

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