Thursday, June 19, 2008

Why You Want To Torment Prospects And Customers

Writen by Steve Martinez

Is your sales team good at sales tormenting? Before you answer this question, let's define what the objective of sales tormenting might be. When I think of tormenting, what comes to mind is a series of small actions that when added up, break down the opposition so they award us what we want. While this might seem cruel and unusual, we can not deny the effective nature of its application.

Is this a sales strategy you want your sales team to duplicate? This strategy is used on us each day. When we enter a political season we find ourselves watching candidate commercials to the point we don't want to watch television. It happens when marketing departments have this as a prime objective for selling a product. It is one of the reasons you see the same TV ads all the time. They torment us with the same commercials over and over again. Television is also relentless to children with sugar cereals and toys during the Saturday morning hours. You might be thinking about surrendering to your own fantasy torment. Is it possible that you are thinking about that silver or red convertible this year? Perhaps you have a fantasy image you want because you have been tormented with a repeated communication.

Customers Don't Expect You To Torment Them

What is your strategy for tormenting a tough or important prospect with your relentless contacts so you get what you want? Consider this, it really isn't torture. The typical prospect doesn't expect you to maintain a consistent level of contact anyway. They expect salespeople to call on them once and then drop off and go away.

The trickle system of contacting your target prospects

This system is a most effective sales strategy. This sales tactic is very similar to water torture because the buyers will simply give up under the pressure of your frequent and constant contacts. If it is so great, why don't more sales managers and businesses insist it? This is a good question. Particularly because so many sales leaders mention how beneficial constant communication is for building relationships. These best practices of sales strategy works best when used consistently and frequently. The buyer simply can't resist the persuasive effect of this sales tool.

We call it the trickle system because it is applied in small amounts over a short and constant period of time. The frequency of your contacts makes a huge difference in how effective the tormenting works. What do you think is the right number of days between contacts in the early development stages of building a sales relationship? My answer is at the end of this article.

Spreading the contact methods

Don't use just one contact method. This will have a negative impact on your goal. For example, how would you feel if someone who wanted to reach you only used the telephone? After a while, anyone would get annoyed with the calls. When we think about it, there are only four methods to contact a prospect and you should use each one to spread the impact of your torment. Besides showing diversity, it also doesn't wear out one method. Persistence and consistency are the keys to success in the quest for larger accounts. Adopting a torment strategy works and sales experts will have countless examples of where a tough buyer will reward determination through persistence.

Time Your Tormenting to be Effective

Just like in the early courting period during the dating process the time between contacts should be short. The candy, flowers, love notes are all used in short frequency. I believe a timing of four days between contacts is appropriate during the courting period for my prospects. The strength of this strategy is that we are competing against all kinds of other media and contacts from the competition. If you want to get noticed, you must adopt a method that gets you noticed. It was the same way in high school, remember? In today's media abundance of communications we are challenged to cut through the clutter with consistent communications.

Steve Martinez is a Sales Management Growth Strategist and Founder of Selling Magic. His organization teaches businesses how to automate and customizing CRM solutions with the best practices of sales management for increased profits.

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