Tips & Ideas to Get Better Prospects
by Mark Hunter
Prospecting does not have to be painful nor does it have to be as hard as you think. The first rule is to make every conversation one where you earn the right, privilege, honor and respect to meet with that person again. Sales and prospecting is not a slimy or ugly activity like some people describe it. I count prospecting and sales as an honor. When you prospect with integrity, you'll gain customers who have integrity. Sales and integrity go together in the same way that integrity and prospecting do. One of the main reasons why I love sales is because it's nothing more than having a conversation. Watch my video to learn more!
Each sale occurs in three different ways: “repeat,” “get,” and “create.” The "repeat" is a measurement of the quality of the service you provide. The “get” is an indication of your marketing efforts; this is business that simply comes your way. What does this mean? It means that prospecting is about creating opportunities, and that’s what I say that sales is about helping others see and achieve what they didn’t think was possible.
Your time will always be your most valuable asset, so your prospecting process must be efficient. Don't waste your time by thinking everyone is a lead. This can be a problem for some salespeople when they don't really know what they're selling. Always focus on the outcomes that you can help your customers achieve not on what you sell.
One great exercise that I share often is create a list of all the outcomes that you help your customers achieve. From your list, determine what type of person will most benefit from the outcomes that you offer. Once you clearly know your outcomes, you can begin to narrow down who it is that you want to target. This takes your funnel from wide to narrow.
When you have fewer prospects, you'll be able to invest more time into the relationship with each one. When you spend more time together, their level of trust in you will increase. Furthermore, the level of trust you build will determine how much they'll pay you.
Focus your prospecting not on what you share but on the questions you ask. The three types of questions I like to include are short questions, commitment questions, and follow-up questions. Each time you engage a prospect, your objective is to gain a micro-commitment from the prospect that allows you to move the process forward.
One technique I like to follow is what you see on every bottle of shampoo: rinse and repeat. These two words are as essential to prospecting as they are to washing hair. You must be willing to repeat the prospecting process over and over but each time with a new message. Once is not enough! The frequency will vary based on what you sell, how people buy and your customer.