I know you have an elevator pitch that your team chants in unison while holding hands in a big circle before you hit the phones and shoot out your bone-chilling cold, generic ass email solicitations. I get it. I understand someone told you that this is the deck (and I hate the term deck, it’s a power point presentation. The same ones you made in middle school. It doesn’t sound or make it cooler if you call it a deck)… I digress… oh, this is the deck that adequately tells our consumers how we can help them with ALL their pain points and challenges. I know you think that if you hit me with enough buzz words I might get so coddamn impressed that I’ll have AP cut you a check just for sounding so web 2.0.
Here’s the truth. First call, I only want to be on the phone 5-10 minutes. If I have to tell you all about my company, I don’t believe you’ve done your job. You should know who I work for and what we do. Period. I hate decks, PowerPoints, Webinars, or anything that involves you reading to me. I am really starting to loathe buzzwords. SEO, AI, machine learning, (type here) analytics, metrics, KPI, MQL, SQL, and any other word that barely describes anything you really offer and how it can help me. The good news, I will keep taking the solicitation calls and emails because I do believe I can learn something. Even something small, might help me be better. In the interim, here are three suggestions that might help you have a little more success with guys like me.
1. Know your customer
Take 15 minutes and do some research before your meeting. Read my mail. Form educated questions. Articulate how you have specifically helped customers in similar or identical verticals. Five P’s. Inform your caller that you have done the research, and ask your educated questions. Be engaged before the meeting starts.
2. Be Objective
Define why we are meeting, and what each party should get out of the meeting. Basically, let’s get to the point. I like making new friends, but I don’t make tons between 9-5. Don’t hold hostages telling anti-climatic stories. Every call and meeting should have an objective to accomplish. One is enough.
3. Articulate exactly how your services can help me
No elevator pitches, company history, executive team summary, or fun facts about your weekend. Here is how I used to do it. Mr. Customer, ‘What are 1-3 things that are creating challenges in your company today?’ Answer those questions with your solutions. This could be your initial objective too. Catch me outside.
Ultimately, it is important to learn more about technology advancements, new services, and software solutions that could help us improve our KPIs, and crush our competition. I know I said a buzz word. We want to be in the know. Above the curve. Find the golden bullet. You might possess that solution. Be the perfect fit. But we’ll never know, because instead of being awesome at selling your business solution, you’re explaining why you part your hair to the left.