Every sales rep knows how hard prospecting is. The unpleasant truth is, most buyers simply don’t want to talk to sales reps and will do anything to avoid contact. There are many reasons why buyers don’t want to talk to you, but how do you figure out what the reason is if they won’t talk to you? Very frustrating!
If you feel like you’re beating your head against the wall trying to break through and initiate dialogues with prospects, it could be that you’re stuck in a rut. For instance, a lot of reps rely on email to start a dialogue. When they get no response, they continue to send emails. After the 10th or 50th or 100th email, they give up. A better way is to switch tactics. If you do, you may land on one that addresses the reason a buyer is not responding — and this could enable you to get a response.
Why Buyers Avoid Contact With Sales Reps
There are many reasons why a buyer will ignore you. Here are the main ones:
- They’re extremely busy.
They’re happy with the status quo.
They don’t think your product/service is needed.
If you send email after email to a buyer in any of these situations, all you’ll do is annoy the person. Here are things you can try to get a conversation going.
- For buyers who are extremely busy, send emails at off hours or weekends, when they have more time. Try phoning them at off hours. Send them a presentation folder with a small gift such as a logo pen. Invite them to lunch — if they are really busy, they may enjoy an excuse to get out of the office.
- For buyers happy with the status quo, communicate how one of their competitors is succeeding because of your product/service. Plant a seed that their business may be in trouble if they don’t check you out.
- For buyers who think they don’t need your stuff, you’ll have to do a little homework. Can you talk to someone else at the company who can give you information that verifies the need for your stuff? Can you find an example of a competitor or company in a similar industry that uses your stuff? In this situation, if you can present the right facts, you’re well on the way to a conversation.
You may have to try all of these methods before you hit the right one, but that’s OK. By covering all the bases, you’ve got a better chance of success than if you merely repeat the same, canned follow-up process over and over.