Today I was called by someone who I had met for 5 minutes at a conference a couple of weeks ago.
They wanted me to consider using their services (this was someone who wanted to provide me a personal service, not an entrepreneur) and asked me if I’d consider taking a meeting with them to discuss their offerings.
I declined the request, but made the following two requests.
1) Can you send me some more information?
2) Do you work with anyone that I know and trust?
Regarding #1, the person emailed me after the call with a link to a corporate homepage. There was no attempt to leverage any of the information I provided in our discussion to direct me at a more specific, relevant section of the website. I wanted the person to do the work and point me at the subsection of the website that applied to my situation.
Regarding #2, I stated that I would only work with someone who came referred to me through my personal network, or someone who the service provider and I both know and trust. The objection handling that this person used was “I work with some heavy hitters on Wall Street, and they would recommend me.” Great, but I don’t know these people from Adam, and although a big name is impressive in some cases, you’re not trying to sell me basketball sneakers or a pair of $200 jeans, so some more directed, personalized sales tactics would make more sense.
What will impress me is if this person calls me back in a couple weeks and says: “John, I took what you said to heart and did some homework. I found out that you know Mr. X. at firm Y, and his cousin is using my service and is very happy with it” In that case you can bet I will take a meeting with the service provider. And not just because they were able to track down that connection, but that they are willing to do the work to show me that my business was worth pursuing.
I firmly believe that if you do the work you’ll start to see the results you want in business, and in life.
So do the work.