Prospecting was the subject of our last conference call. It became apparent many of us do so little prospecting that we are unsure how to greet prospects and ask the right questions. Of course we all know different situations call for different approaches, so it’s easy for even experts in prospecting to get confused about what works and what doesn’t.
If conflicting advice or lack of understanding is holding us back from prospecting and becoming the great closer we know we are, maybe it ‘s time for us to break it down to the most basic concept. The direct marketing industry uses a formula of AIDA which is Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action. Prospecting is all about creating attention and interest. Once you have the interest, you earn the right to enter into a conversation.
How do we get the attention of the prospect? Let’s first determine who we are going to target. Stop casting a wide net and narrow our search, in other words let’s target a segment of the market that our product or service can really provide an impact. This way we can become an expert in one segment of the industry and approach our prospect as an expert. Let’s determine their WIIFM (What’s In It For Me). By keeping a narrow focus on just one segment of the market, we can bring valuable information to the prospect that places our product / service to the forefront. In other words, it will become easier for us to create attention which will develop interest in what we are pitching.
Sometimes we get lost in the action of prospecting for the sake of prospecting. We do it to fill our calendars and our actively reports. So we end up targeting everybody and the result is we go out unprepared. We are not able to get the attention to create the interest, so we end up getting the brush off. No one likes rejection and after a few failed cold calls, we call it a day. We can turn this around by focusing on a smaller section of the market that can use our product or service, we can do our homework on that section of the market, become the industry expert of that market, and attack it with the confidence of a market expert.
Who knows, maybe by keeping focus on a select segment of our industry, we can target the right individuals which will increase our success rate. Remember the lion hunts by focusing on a herd and then targets the closest prey. The attack is short and powerful. In other words they get the attention of the prey.