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Monday
Nov192007

"We always have more prospects in our 'sales pipeline' than we can comfortably handle": True or False (for your business)?

There are three reasons why a company’s sales pipeline - a list of business opportunities waiting to be closed - does not have enough quantity of prospects in it. And there are three corresponding ways to fix this problem, once and for all.

FIRST PATH Your MESSAGE to your market does not have a strong enough “What’s In It For Me?” component. A crucial component of attracting a large quality of prospects to your business is your MESSAGE. A very important part of this message is a blunt, no-nonsense SOLUTION statement to a problem that they are struggling with. Example: A busy executive who is conscious of his dirty shoes hurrying to catch a flight to an important business meeting reads these words at the airport: “Two- minute Shoeshine.” Would the message get his attention? How many more executives like him would the shoe-shine shop attract? What’s your blunt, no-nonsense WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) message for your market? Is it attracting a sufficiently large quantity of prospects? What KINDS of prospects does attract? Follow the link “Want to Jump Start Your Sales? STOP Marketing!” for more on why and how to craft such a message.

SECOND PATH You don’t have an effective set of ACTION steps - a Marketing and Prospecting System - that you and others in your business follow consistently to bring in fresh prospects. Such a system is required to bring your MESSAGE to your market place where it is reinforced and converted into a clear future engagement between you and your prospect, an appointment, perhaps. Having a strong message is important. Yet, once you have it, you must reinforce it to your target market often and in different ways. For most businesses, an ideal number of “channels” to send your message across to your target market is somewhere between 5 and 7. What are your channels? How consistently are your using them to reach your audience? Do you track their effectiveness? How effectively do you convert people who are ?browsing? and ?looking? to an appointment?

THIRD PATH You and your people are not 100% behind your MESSAGE and/or your Marketing and Prospecting System. In other words, you are not engaged with your own message. This is probably because the message that you have created for your business was not created by you or and other in your business. It was likely ?outsourced? to other people outside of your company ? such as an advertisement company or a website development company. Or if it was created by you, it was not given the full attention from you and your people, your hearts and your souls, that it deserves. It also means that your Marketing and Prospecting System was developed, perhaps, as a theoretical, academic exercise and is disconnected from the realities of the marketplace. Such a System, when it comes to execution, becomes ineffective as a tool to bring in new prospects. How can you - the whole you, not just the intellectual you - directly get involved in developing the core message of you company? How can you get your people involved in the same manner? How can you develop a Marketing and Prospecting System that is real-world, yet, engaging to you and all your people, especially the sales and service people, in your organization?

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