Crimes Against Messaging
Being the “messaging company,” we’ve had the pleasure of working with some outstanding marketers and salespeople throughout the years. Thanks to all of you who are reading this… we continue to learn from you every day.
Unfortunately, some of the folks who call on our company to pitch their products aren’t quite up to your standard. After years of sitting through painful discovery sessions and demos you’d need a PhD to understand, we’ve decided to start issuing tickets. Like the fashion police, but for crimes against messaging.
Violation #1: Knowing everything about my digital actions, but nothing about me. The amazing power of marketing automation and sales intelligence technology allows salespeople and marketers to track the “digital buying movements” of prospects around your website, landing pages, and email campaigns. But stalking ability isn’t insight. We get calls all the time from salespeople saying, “Hey, I see you downloaded our whitepaper. Let me tell you all about our solution.” While they know exactly what I’ve done on their website, they haven’t bothered to come to ours. Don’t let technology make you lazy. Do your homework, find out what your prospect company does and what their challenges are, and be ready to offer some real insight before you pick up that phone.
Violation #2: Talking around objections. An uncanny amount of salespeople believe that in order to counter an objection during their sales pitch, they need to just keep on talking… and talking… and talking, without ever answering the original question. And yes, it might work; I’m no longer going to ask any more challenging questions because frankly, I don’t have another twenty minutes to sit through the answer. But I’m still holding onto objections, and those objections could very well prevent me from ever buying from you. Objections are a good thing. Be ready for them, seek them out, and for goodness sakes stop talking when you’ve answered it.
Violation #3: Lack of confidence. Hey, selling is intimidating. And real confidence isn’t easy to fake. But remember, you talk to far more people like your prospect than they do. You’re helping solve problems they are facing every day. You are an expert. Stop thinking of yourself as a mere salesperson/marketer and start thinking of yourself as an evangelist, here to rid the world from the pains your solutions solves.
That’s a start. What other violations would you happily report to the Messaging Police? Give it your best shot in 140 characters — tweet it using #youhadmesolduntil … (you fill in the rest):
#youhadmesolduntil you started talking about your three degrees from Cambridge.
#youhadmesolduntil you mentioned “innovation” was what made you better than the other guys.
#youhadmesolduntil your elevator speech lasted over an hour.
And here’s a shout-out to a special alumni of ours who began handing out an award called the “Golden Hammock” for presenters who didn’t make use of Power Messaging techniques.
- Jeannie Frantz, Marketing & Sales Enablement, Corporate Visions, Inc.