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Are you a Gold Miner?

Are you a Gold Miner?

David Brydson | SmallBizLink

Prospects express interest in what you sell, will make appointments with you, and are likely to buy from you – or your competitor – soon. Prospects are the gold. You can then move directly into the sales process and get the deal closed. Most of the people you will contact will not fall into this category, but like the miners of old; you will stumble into an occasional nugget. Being in the right place at the right time will only come through the constant effort of working and those nuggets will pop to the surface.

Suspects are where some of your initial contacts will be. These are the gold flakes that miners will eventually get to show up in the bottom of the pan. They, like you, have to go through a lot of rejects (Mud and Sludge) to get them to show themselves. Keep working at it and they will be there for you too. Suspects show some interest in what you sell, may take some information, but won’t commit to an appointment or go on record as saying they’re interested yet. Build a relationship with them through the use of a drip marketing or educational process. This will keep your name in front of them so when the buying decision is ready to be made, they will know who you are and will be more likely to come back to you.

Be sure to provide quality material in every communication and ensure that it has some value to the suspect. This ensures they will look forward to hearing from you and goes a long way to build the desired trust, in you, so they want to do business with you.

I have accepted many invitations to get information form many sources over the years. I was not ready to commit to a purchase yet, but willing to look at it. Almost without fail, everyone of them sent a single piece of information that I wanted and then jumped straight into the heavy handed sales process. Or, they started to send me 1-5 messages every day about things that I had no interest in.

How long do you think I waited before I hit the “Un-subscribe” button? They never even got a chance to earn my business. The 49’ners didn’t load the creek bed with dynamite the minute they found a flake of gold. You should not either.

Rejects, like the mud and gravel, are the largest group you’ll deal with. They have no interest in what you sell and maybe never will. Or they are married to your competitor and will never change. Don’t let rejects discourage you. Throw them out with the wash and start sifting again. There’s still plenty of gold to be found.

You will spend more effort, with fewer positive results, on these mud and gravel contacts unless you have a defined way to indentify them quickly. Create a series of questions that help you determine:

1) Do they have an interest in your product or service? 2) Are they in a position to make the buying decision? 3) Are they qualified? (Match your target, able to afford it, etc…) 4) Are they ready to buy or need more information?

Keep track of, and analyze, the results of the responses to those questions to help you stay on track and verify that you are addressing the correct targets. If you find the responses to be out of sync with what you are selling, then you might need to find better targets or seek other methods of engagement.

Like the gold miners of the past; you too can find a lot of gold if you continue to work at it consistently. You might get lucky and walk into a meadow and find a creek that is laden with large gold nuggets, but do not bank your entire business on that. It is a sure pathway to the poor house. Ask any of those that said “There is no more gold left in them there hills.”

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