A few summers ago I started running Triathlons. At my age, simply crossing the finish line alive is a real thrill. As my training continues my focus is on aerobic conditioning. Simply stated this is the ability to perform some form of exercise for longer and longer periods of time.
The method recommended by all of the professional trainers and doctors is Long Slow Distance, LSD. That is swim, bike, and run for longer and longer distances while maintaining a relatively stable heart rate. The results should be a stronger ability to perform at higher heart rates. As you maintain this training regimen, you will perform faster because your ability to replace oxygen increases. So, you will be able to swim, bike and run faster while maintaining the same heart rate.
Now, simply apply this idea to Prospecting and you can see the value of making cold calls on a regular basis. As you maintain your Prospecting efforts you get better and better at the skill. Also, you begin to build up a large reserve of potential customers with whom you will need to follow up in the weeks, months, and years ahead.
It doesn't take long to realize the benefits from simply persisting at your Prospecting efforts.
Let's consider how many real Prospecting/cold calls you make in any year. Now when I say a Prospecting call I mean that you "talk to a potential customer with the intent of making them a customer."
When you stop in a talk to a receptionist, get a name, leave some literature and a card, but, don't talk to the actual prospect that is only half a Prospecting call. You simply have another lead. When you call back or get that person on the phone, then you have made a Prospecting call.
Now with those parameters in mind how many Prospecting/cold calls did you make in the last year? Could you have made more? If you had, would your have been more successful in your mind?
Most of us have about 40 full weeks available in the year for selling. Vacations, holidays, meetings, etc. take up the rest of our year. Please consider the following idea.
In aerobic training, we are supposed to swim, bike, or run for a set period of time everyday of the week, weekends we can rest. For a few weeks of the year we need to add Anaerobic training, which is "speed work." This builds up our ability to go faster in the long haul.
What would happen if you made one or two Prospecting/cold calls everyday you were selling? That would be 5 or 10 new prospect calls a week, 200 - 400 per year. That could be your "aerobic selling."
Next, you could add a few "anaerobic" weeks to your selling by making several Prospecting/cold calls a day one week a quarter or so. You choose when.
What I suggest is that you simply decide IF you would like to do this or not. If yes, then start. Use our System for Prospecting and Making Cold Calls, or your own, or someone else's. The important thing is that you actually DO the calls.
The more I train the more I see the similarity between athletic performance and selling performance. Unfortunately for me we have to go out there everyday, we can't just think about it. If you don't train or you don't Prospect the results are obvious. The next time you show up at a "Triathlon" you may have trouble finishing.
Now you know why I feel that Persistence in Prospecting is Simply the Aerobic Training of Sales.
Sell Well and Often
© Copyright 2006 WJ Truax
Bill Truax is a Sales Management and Field Operations Consultant living in Cleveland, Oh. He conducts Sales Team Assessments, Management and Leadership programs, and works with Field Sales Professionals and Managers both in the field and in workshops. He has written 3 books and recorded 2 CD's on Prospecting and Making Cold Calls and conducts a variety of skill based seminars, workshops, and train the trainer programs. Bill has spent literally thousands of hours in the field making cold calls with sales professionals to teach his BLITZ CALL System. When Bill is in the field he actually makes many of the BLITZ CALLs himself, regardless of the industry. This is to demonstrate that anyone can prospect you just need to know how. Bill writes a Free weekly Prospecting Succes Tip for subscribers at his website http://www.BlitzCall.com The site also details all the materials and programs Trufield offers.