Written by Sean McPheat |
A NEW SALES APPROACH – It’s not what you think…
Here’s a question I received recently:
“Is there a new/better approach to building interest in a product or service than the time honoured direct mail + cold calling process most marketers utilise?
The cost of telemarketing is outrageous. The targets never remember reading your direct mail. And they are all numb from the continual marketing onslaught from every conceivable angle.
What are some cost-effective, new and innovative approaches that will permit me to use the great sales techniques you have helped to hone?
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Here are my thoughts on this:
Thank you for the plug, and let me say that your observation is spot-on about the most formidable challenge in the world of selling today: sky-rocketing high prospecting costs, using age-old and ineffective techniques, resulting in a dismal return on investment.
You are correct in that this problem is serious and we do indeed need a new approach.
In answer to your question, is there a cost effective, new and innovate approach? Yes!
However, the overall interpretation of the problem, the analysis of current conditions and the solution to the problem, may not be what you would expect and is infinitely too in-depth for me to cover here. But I can give you an overview of the concept.
Let me begin by first sharing a few facts:
As far as the costs; prospecting expenditures, in particularly in telemarketing has gone up year after year. B2B Magazine reports that almost 46% of all marketers will once again, increase their budgets on lead generation, most by around 20% and about half of all sales companies say that above every other business objective, their top business priority is lead generation and sales lead management.
And as to the effectiveness; a recent B2B Marketing Effectiveness Survey found that while over 60% of all sellers use telemarketing for lead generation, less than half of them report that it is effective for them or pays for itself. The survey also found that 88% extensively prospect electronically and by email, but only 20% see real results. And, you are absolutely right in that the survey also found that 62% of all marketers spend small fortunes on those beautiful fancy, full-color glossy brochures that you mail out, but they report barley a 6% effectiveness rating.
So yes; costs are up, results are down and something has to give. And yes, the whole thing stems from the fact that the, as you so eloquently put it, “time-honoured,” techniques simply no longer work.
However, it is not the mediums; that is the telephone or the post, that are the problem. Nor is it even the time-honoured techniques. What has occurred is that the medium and the techniques are being used for a prospective customer who no longer exists.
We are dealing with a new, modern, educated, sales savvy and sophisticated buyer and need equally a new and educated way of thinking.
We can still use the telephone and make those cold calls and the direct mail-follow-up call process will work, IF we change our thinking and our approach to match the new prospective customer of today.
In that, I am not talking about a few new fancy words or off-pat answers to objections or a slicker mailer. I mean that we need to make a complete paradigm shift in the world of selling; we must re-create our entire profession from the ground up.
I have made this the single most important objective in my business, my career, in fact, in my life. I have developed the solution and MTD is just beginning to reveal and market that solution.
However, the reason I mentioned the above is because the solution to this sales conundrum we are in, is not a newer bunch of sales closes. It is about our thinking and understanding and will require a whole lot of work and study. As sales professionals, we have to re-learn what we think we know.
You see, the only reason the costs for telemarketing is so high is because the results are so low. The only reason the results are so low is because the prospects most of us are calling is not there any longer and therefore those old, tried and true techniques are simply no longer valid.
But stay tuned!
I am developing a new product that is so new and innovate that it will turn the world of selling upside down!
Prepare to re-think every single thing you have ever learned about selling.
Prepare to trash sales concepts and ideas that you may have held sacred for years.
I won’t tell you what the concept is called just yet because I am gagged by my law team at the moment. But make sure that you are subscribed to my weekly sales tips newsletter so you
are the first to know when it’s released and of course I will be offering a very special deal for my loyal subscribers!
Watch this space
Originally published: 9 September, 2008