So you are ready to date and the world is your opportunity. There are literally tens of thousands of people in your immediate area to choose from (even though it doesn’t always feel like it). You can’t meet them all and even if you could find them all in one place on a dating website, you would be fatigued after a few broad searches. Just like dating, in sales you have to narrow down your criteria as to who would be a good fit for you. Makes sense, doesn’t it? And yet in sales we like to believe that anyone could be a great client so long as they are willing to pay. But the world just doesn’t work like that and we have to have a better idea of who is a good fit so we can be efficient in getting what we want.
There are several ways to find your prospect candidates online, with LinkedIn being the preferred ‘sales dating’ website. Many of us keep our searches too broad and get mired down in a sea of opportunities that is so big that we drown in the overwhelming waters of prospects. Many of us don’t really know who our ideal customers would be, especially if we are starting in a new industry. Or, we are so used to dating a certain type of person that we pigeonhole our opportunities and completely miss something that may be even better for us. You never know until you test the waters and prospect in a new arena. You may run back screaming with a bloody nose or you may have found such an untapped opportunity that you become a superstar in a new industry or niche.
Before you set a course in your criteria of who you are going to prospect, go out and meet those types of people and take the time to learn about them. You will find that if you take a soft selling position and ask discovery questions to learn about someone, you will find that you will also have the opportunity to share your value proposition with that other person. So no one’s time is really wasted. Scorecard can help you create a strong discovery process and value proposition… Don’t just make assumptions about who Mr. or Mrs. Right is to you until after you’ve gone on a couple of sales dates and have the chance to meet some people.
You also don’t need a large list of prospects to start as well. Running your prospects through a proper touch sequence takes a lot of time and energy and if you are not careful you can wear yourself out. Pace yourself. Imagine going on a new date with someone different every night for a month. At first it may seem exciting to be dating thirty people in such a short time, but you would be worn out by your fifth date and wouldn’t be presenting your best self to the other twenty five dates and therefore you will have wasted yours and their time. Selecting the right kind of prospect early in your processes set a path of long term success. Just take the time to understand what is a good fit for you so you can go out and focus on getting what you want.