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How Are You Different?

by David Brock on October 29th, 2017

I’m constantly amazed at the “sameness” of the majority of the prospecting I see.  We inundate our prospects and customers with emails, social media outreaches, and phone calls that are virtually indistinguishable from those sent by everyone else.

We blanket our prospects with one outreach after another.  In most, we are pitching our products or our companies.  We send the same, un-personalized emails, to 1000’s of targets.  We follow them with calls, again focusing on our interests, not the customers.’  We set our email systems to automatically cycle follow ups, usually something as unique as, “did you see my original email?”

When I look at what’s inflicted on our customers, it’s astounding–both the volume and the mind-numbing sameness and predictability of each outreach.

While the products/solutions, and companies may differ, each outreach is virtually the same.

“Industry leaders find our products/solutions help them achieve these goals, more effectively….”

“Google, Microsoft, GE, have gotten great benefit our of implementing our solutions to help them with……”

“(Insert company name) is the market leader in these solutions….”

“Can I arrange time to talk to you about the value you would get from implementing our solutions….”

“Thanks for your interest in our eBook, can we discuss your needs for a new solution….”

Every outreach seems to come from the same playbook—focus on what we sell, talk about industry leaders getting value, talk about your company leadership, ask for a meeting to talk more about your products and solutions….

After receiving dozens of these each day, they all blend together in a mind-numbing mass.

Then there are those that try to be outrageous, seem to use the same play book.  They may make outrageous claims about the product or company, or they may try to provoke a response through some clever sentence daring you to not respond.

In this mass of sameness, every once in a while someone stands out.

It’s not the flashiness in how they write or engage you on the phone.  It’s not the outrageous claims or references.

There are a small number that are different–they are carefully researched, they are about their customers.  Rather than pitching they want to listen and learn.  They say little about their own company or their solutions, perhaps not even talking about them in the first call, instead they focus their attention on learning about their customers’ goals dreams and challenges.

These calls are so rare, they stand out as being refreshing and different.

Guess which calls I remember and respond to.


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  1. Excellent article David. I’ve noticed the same thing. Not surprising that sales reps want to use a proven formula for outreach – but for the prospect – the novelty wears off after being subjected to the same approach multiple times. A bit of creativity and differentiation would help both seller and prospect.

  2. Janice Mars permalink

    Outstanding post David! I could not have said it better myself.

  3. In order to make the sale, you really need to nail down what sets you apart from the rest of the competition. Not only that, but you should determine what makes you different from the rest of the sales professionals out there so you can play to your strengths.

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