The 3 Most Costly Prospecting Mistakes

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

gold coins stack Below are three clear and simple mistakes that sales people routinely make while prospecting. Prospecting mistakes are the most costly problems because most sales people and sales management never actually realise the full affect of prospecting errors.

What You Can Not See CAN Hurt YOU
The problem is that it is much easier to see and understand others selling issues that result in loses, such as closing mistakes, poor customer service issues, or losing sales to the competition. It is easy to spot lost sales opportunities.

However, it is far more difficult to recognise or quantify the lost in sales revenue when it comes to sales opportunities that NEVER developed in the first place, due to poor prospecting. So, please take these three prospecting mistakes to heart and avoid them at all costs because it is likely they are already costing you more money than you can imagine.

#3 – Failure to Get Referrals
Not getting enough referrals; especially getting referrals from the prospects that do not buy, is a killer. You must become and expert at getting referrals and if you are already good at this, then practice getting more.

#2 – Selling the Product or Service Prematurely
Prospecting is but a set in the sales process, and it is not the close. However, far too many sales people confuse prospecting with closing. In that I mean, when they should be qualifying the prospect, or identifying the decision maker ort just setting an appointment—they are trying to sell the product.

When a prospect objects to an appointment, you need to sell the appointment and not the product. Avoid falling into the trap of trying to sell your product or service during the prospecting stages.

#1 – Poor Record Keeping and Customers Relationships Management
The most costly prospect mistake is the lack of effective record keeping. Most sales people overlook the importance of keeping accurate sales-activity records. Prospects that slip through the cracks are often the difference between success and failure. Prospects you forgot to call, emails you failed to send or lost leads, are a fraction of what slips through your fingers. If you are using post-it notes, an A4 pad, memory or the back of a cigarette packet for prospecting, you are losing money!

Avoid these costly prospecting mistakes and keep your sales funnel fill.

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training | Image courtesy of Digital Art at

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 18 May, 2012

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