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Now Is The Time To Plant Seeds

Just like many of you are now out in your garden, planting seeds and awaiting the fruits of your efforts, so, too, should we garden on our calls.

What I mean is planting proactive seeds which have a chance of being harvested later: on calls that don’t result in a sale, ending by planting something to think about in the prospect’s mind ...something that just might prompt them to call you in the future.

Let me illustrate this by giving an example of how not to do it.

Ending a call with, “So keep us in mind, OK?” is one of the most worthless phrases sales reps ever mutter. I wonder how prospects manage to keep a straight face as they say, “Oh sure, I will.” This is like when you say to someone, “Hey, we should get together sometime and do lunch or something.”  

Instead, what you should do is remind them of what future unfavorable circumstances they should be on the lookout for, which just happen to be problems you could solve. For example,

“Ok Ms. Carpbreath, it doesn’t look like I have a fit for what you need today. Here’s something to keep in mind, though. When you do notice more and more of your direct mailings being returned because of bad addresses, we do have a software program that could help you reduce that number, and save the printing and postage expense. I’ll send you my card, and please keep it in the file you work from when you’re planning mailings, OK?”

Notice the last sentence. It asks, or tells, them to place the card or (literature) in a place they'll see it when they're most likely to need it. Do the same. Tell them, to put it in their Rolodex under “Widgets,” in their project file, in their contact management program, or  wherever they can easily access it when they have the need.

We’ve all had people whom we’ve long written off call and say “Things have changed. Let’s talk. Here’s a way to make that happen more often.


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