My father always loves to remind me of his favorite business advice:
“If all of your competition is looking east, then look west.”
It is so true, and has been a central guiding force in developing my Game Plan Selling system as a sales trainer in Boston. If everyone is doing one thing, then do something else—preferably the opposite of what everyone is doing.
As a sales strategist, I look for trends in the industry to discover opportunities, and one trend that is undeniable is that everyone in sales is focused on using the latest technology to connect with prospects. New tools like LinkedIn, Twitter and Google are incredible, but remember that you aren’t the only person using them. In fact, everyone is using them—and in most cases, in lieu of some of the more traditional strategies.
My research shows that prospects:
- Receive fewer phone calls from sales people than 10 years ago.
- Receive fewer direct mail pieces than 10 years ago.
- Receive fewer unplanned drop-ins than 10 years ago.
This is because many of your competitors have abandoned these tried-and-true practices for what’s hot and new in prospecting. This creates tremendous opportunity for those aware of this.
Get back on the phone, start mailing your prospects and stop by prospects’ offices. These strategies work, and they work better than 10 years ago for the simple reason that fewer people are doing them.
To be clear, I am not suggesting that we don’t take advantage of the opportunities that new technologies create. Just don’t forget that everyone is using them, and often to the detriment of the more tried-and-true methods of prospecting.
Remember, when your competition is looking east, then look west.
What tried-and-true prospecting methods do you still use with great results? Please share below.
Written by Marc Wayshak, author of the book Game Plan Selling. which shares the sales system developed through his sales training in Boston.