Avoiding the Black Hole of Prospects – When to Walk Away

Yes, you have worked really hard on this potential deal. Yes, you have spent countless hours communicating with this prospect. Yes, it is hard to walk away. But, it may just be time to let this one go. Whenever you are developing a relationship with a potential lead, a lot of time and effort most likely goes into it. But sometimes it’s just not enough and this prospect is not worth your time. Here are a few signs that should tell you its time to walk away:

Focused Solely on the Numbers

Numbers and prices are obviously a big part of any sale. But, that should come after a relationship has been formed. If a prospect is asking about the price and costs of everything right off the bat that most likely means they are already leaning on a different product or service, or are not interested in learning about what might actually be best suited for their needs. They want a quick solution that won’t break the bank and are not ready to take the time to find the right one.

Not a Decision Maker

At the end of the day, it is a decision maker that will close the deal with you. While communicating with a prospect, ask yourself if this person can actually make the decision. Do they know everyone that is involved? Can they tell you what they see for the future, after this deal is made? Are they openly communicating with you or relaying messages to someone else in their company?

Choosing an End Date

Make sure the prospect can give you an end date or period of time where they would like to start utilizing your product or service. If it is too open-ended or they appear to be dragging their feet they will most likely not close a deal any time soon. The last thing you want is emails or phone calls going back and forth for months on end with no positive end result.

Do They Understand What They Want?

When forming the relationship with a prospect, part of it is the understanding what exactly they are looking for. Can this person, in detail, express the needs of his or her company? Talk is cheap when it is broad and unhelpful. To best fit their needs and yours, you need to know what exactly they are looking for.

Fail to See the Value

You know your product or service is of value, but do they? Sometimes a prospect might not see the true value that your product or service will bring to them. If they need constant reminders and convincing then just maybe it is not the right fit for them. If they fail to see the value, then there most likely is no value in continuing to sell to them.

Lack of Communication

One of the easiest signs to a sale going nowhere is a lack of communication. If they are simply ignoring all of your emails or phone calls, or there are large gaps of time between responses then odds are they are uninterested. In selling, persistence is key. But, after a certain point, the time spent attempting to communicate with an uninterested prospect, is better served building a relationship with someone else.

Are They a ‘Yes Man?’

Communication is a two-way street. At first, you want to listen and research as much as possible to make sure you understand their needs. But, when it comes time to demonstrate and explain your product and service, what is their response? Are they asking questions and clarifying details? Do they seem engaged? Or are they simply nodding their head and going along with whatever you say? If it is the latter, interest in your particular product or service is probably low. By asking questions and having a dialogue, the prospect is truly deciding if it is right for them. If they stop asking questions or agree with whatever you are saying, then they are most likely already thinking about a competitor and have become dispassionate.

 

Now, if you are witnessing some of these signs, it may be time to walk away. But, that does not mean cut off all future communication. Times change and down the line, they may in fact be in need of your actual product or service. Keep the relationship you have built whether small or strong and follow up once again down the road to gauge if things have changed.

In the meantime, do not waste your time falling into the black hole of prospect chasing. Stay on top of solid leads and don’t waste time with those who are not serious about doing business.

User Group/Networking Event at Graph Expo

Graph Expo Logo - Official (interlinkONE and Grow Socially are both exhibiting)

On behalf of everyone at interlinkONE and Grow Socially, we are excited to announce that we will be hosting a special User Group & Networking Event at Graph Expo this year. If you will be at the show or in the Chicago area at that time, we’d love for you to swing by. Here are a few answers to questions that you may have:

When and Where is the event?

Our User Group and Networking Event will take place on Tuesday September 13th from 4:00pm – 5:30pm.

It will be held inside McCormick Place at the Networking Lounge Room.

The room number is S501a.

What will be covered?

The purpose of the event will be to allow our staff, customers, and other associates to enjoy some quality networking time. We will have food and refreshments in the room as well!

Employees of both interlinkONE and Grow Socially will be on-hand to discuss:

  • Recent (and upcoming!) enhancements to the ilinkONE Version 8 product (integrated, multi-channel marketing software)
  • An overview and demonstration of the QReate & Track and iFlyMobi products
  • A presentation on how Grow Socially is helping companies to improve their marketing efforts
  • A discussion on “what’s next” when it comes to the worlds of marketing, communications, and technology!

How can I attend?

We would love to see as many of you there as possible!

If you’re thinking of attending, please click here to RSVP >>

What if I cannot attend?

We realize that not everyone of our customers can attend Graph Expo. We will take pictures and video at this event and we’ll share it with everyone afterwards! But please note that we are also working on scheduling another User Group Meeting in the near future in case you can’t make this one.

Using Social CRM to Build Relationships

How well do your sales reps truly know your company’s top prospects?

Have they learned what they currently know by a few phone calls? Perhaps one or two face-to-face meetings? Did they perhaps pick up a newsworthy tidbit while chatting to a person in the middle of a crowded trade show floor?

All of that information can be valuable. It should also end up in your CRM’s system.

But is it possible for your company to learn more? Can you gain more relevant information, almost in real-time?

The answer is yes to both questions.

Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or another social network, chances are very good that a a fair amount of your prospects are on at least one of those channels. Each channel has the potential to offer valuable information that can benefit a rep during the sales process.

  • Facebook might help provide deeper insight into someone’s personal interests. Are they a major fan of sports or art? Are they absolutely giddy over their child”s accomplishments? Do they have a “secret” life as a drummer in a band?
  • Twitter might help you to keep tabs on someone’s business-related trips. It might also help you to gain a greater understanding of the topics that they are truly passionate about? (What topics do they frequently tweet or RT about?)
  • LinkedIn may help you to discover shared business connections.

The list of potential data points and insights that can be gained from social networks certainly goes beyond that. It will also continue to grow.

Are your marketing and sales folks finding ways to access that information and put it to use?

Customer Relationships Improve With Data Integration

Database

When it comes to the world of clipart, the “database” is never really portrayed as a beautiful thing.

That really is a shame… When used properly, a database filled with integrated data can help provide absolutely relevant information to a company about their customers & prospects at exactly the right moment.

In many cases today, though, businesses choose to purchase point systems. One program does their email marketing; another one does PURLs; then there’s their CRM tool, etc. Yes, each customer and prospect might live separately in all 3 of those system’s database.

Now that is less than ideal! Is there a better way to do it?

DMNews published an article this month from our CEO, John Foley, Jr. The article is titled “Customer Relationships Improve With Data Integration“.

If you are looking for ways to better communicate and provide value to the people that are important to your business, this article may help.

Click here to read it >>