A close friend–a consultant who is one of the best sales experts I’ve met forwarded me a prospecting letter he received. There is nothing good about the approach. In fact, it reeks of arrogance and condescension. Even worse, it purports to challenge my friend in an area in which he is a recognized expert.
Here’s the letter, names/links adapted….
[Ben] “green-lighted” me to offer you a free 1-on-1 analysis of your current sales development pipeline.
If that interests you, let’s talk. Apply to book a call with me here.
Just to give you an idea of what to expect, other businesses who’ve taken advantage of these calls…
Analyze their lead generation and sales process with an expert
Get clarity on what’s working and what’s not
Get an outside view of their business, finding holes they didn’t notice before
Learn what’s working for other businesses similar to theirs
If you need any of that, maybe I can help.
Here’s direct the link to apply: [link]
These are first come, first served, free, in-depth planning sessions. We ask you to apply because we need to be picky about people who take their sales development seriously.
Once your application is accepted, a member of my team will reach out to you to book a time. In just 30-45 minutes, you’ll gain some significant insight that may even help you book more quality sales appointments in the next few weeks.
Where do I begin, there is so much wrong with this prospecting attempt? Let’s start:
- This email is from a company that purports to have expertise in leveraging LinkedIn for selling. Don has confirmed that it appears they never looked at his profile. Had they done that, they might have seen that Don is a recognized expert in the areas they suggest Don might have problems. They may have still prospected, but they might have customized an approach that would have been more relevant and interesting to Don.
- This email is a response to Don’s response to the original. In his response, he suggested, because of his background, that he would not be a good candidate for their efforts.
- Despite Don’s response, I suppose that he should feel “privileged” that [Ben] has “greenlighted” Don. He’s granted Don the permission to accept further prospecting from his team. One wonders what hurdles Don (and others) might have to go through to offer money to this company to buy their products. If Don wants to buy, will have have to pass a test to give them his money? (I’ve counseled Don on his objection handling skills, just in case they reject his money.)
- It’s interesting, they are the people prospecting. Don has already suggested he is not a prospect in his prior response. Yet he has to “apply” for the privilege of letting them prospect further? Can you spell c-o-n-d-e-s-c-e-n-s-i-o-n?
- Clearly, they “value” developing a relationship with Don. [Ben] is kicking it to [Carl] and if Don is accepted, the next contact will be kicked to yet a third person. Looks like Don is just another widget on their sales assembly line.
- The messaging is confusing, Don is being offered a free analysis, but he has to apply and may be rejected….. What is the offer?
- “We need to be picky about who we accept….” It’s hard to discount the stunning arrogance of this statement. But then one wonders, shouldn’t they have determined that already? After all, experts in sales development and prospecting know the importance of focusing viciously on their ICP. They know that prospecting outside that ICP is a waste of the prospects’ and their time. So presumably, if they were using “best practices,” they would have already known if Don is in their ICP, probably learning that Don isn’t. One also wonders, since they haven’t been selective in their targeting, do they really “reject” an applicant?
- I always love these prospecting attempts from “experts in prospecting and sales development.” Clearly, they must be practicing what they preach. They must be leveraging their methods in their own prospecting. One wonders, “Do we want to treat our prospects with the same arrogance and disdain?” “Do we want to waste our ‘brand equity,’ time, and money on such poorly targeted approaches?”
[Ben] may have “green-lighted” this—but clearly this is an approach that should be “red-lighted.”