Over the last few months, I’ve seen a substantial uptick in the number of people that just happened to “stumble across” my profile on LinkedIn. All my new friends who want to help me….
Almost every day I get new emails from business development people using LinkedIn as a platform. These people claim to be able to help my business needs in many different ways. Some will guarantee me thousands of qualified leads. Some will cure my technology issues and help me develop and grow using artificial intelligence. Others will get me working capital. I “love” the emails that look for profile buzzwords and assume that my Firm, D3 Partners LLC is a hedge fund and/or sells financial products. Then there are the sneaky people who pretend they want to connect, then within minutes of connecting, the sales pitch occurs.
One thing that most of these sales geniuses have in common is that they haven’t taken any time to do a shred of homework. You don’t know me or my business, so how do you know what my needs are? The “spray and pray” approach may work for more transactional type businesses but isn’t as effective as taking the time to build relationships. In cases where relationships are important, building trust is paramount. If you don’t take the time to do your preparatory work, why should I trust that you will be more thorough if we do business together? Where is the people connection?
Emails can be an effective tool in support of the sales process.
Here are some thoughts on how to use emails more effectively as part of the sales process:
- Do your homework first. Take the time to read profiles and at least know the focus of the work. Not all “benefits” are benefits to me.
- Search for common interest, something that may lead to a conversation. Perhaps a common University or past employer.
- Don’t jump into the sales process before you know the needs or wants of the person on the other side.
- Don’t use conditionals – “if I show you… will you…?”
- Be authentic.
- Use referrals when you can. Having a mutual connection who suggested we connect is valuable.
So, let me answer all these emails right here and now. D3 Partners is not a financial services Firm. We don’t need capital, but thank you anyway. No, I do not want to become a best-selling author in 30 days. My IT needs revolve around me remembering my password. We are high touch – thousands of leads would be of no value. No, if you actually read my LinkedIn profile first, you would see that we actually do not have any mutual connections. I don’t want to see how we can mutually benefit from a meeting – that’s your code for wanting to sell me something.
I do have an idea though that may be helpful to all of you email salesy types. You say you can get me leads – I say you already have….