Farquharson/Tedesco on Business Development: How to Hunt Successfully
Today, we're not talking about up-sell, cross-sell or any other "farmer" sales type activity for existing accounts. For the next 1,000 or so words, we're going to hyper-focus on being a red meat predator, a hunting pro, a top-of-the-food chain new business development champ.
No matter how well established you are in your career, how large your existing book of business, at some point nature catches up. Leaves wilt, seasons change, contacts leave, mergers happen and, sometimes—usually when the timing's awful—you'll discover you need to hunt.
The trick to successful hunting is to hunt before you need to. Of course, we all know this. Sales managers preach this. Talking heads talk this. But actually working the hunting process while biz is flowing is something quite different. Your trusty consultants can't supply motivation to hunt for new business. Neither can your boss, even when dangling rewards or threats. Whether you hunt or not, is completely on you baby! And your bank account!
So now you've got religion. You need to hunt and you're willing to do something about it. What next? Two words: Expert and Finite.
Be an EXPERT in the Eyes of the Client
Imagine you're a print buyer. Would you rather buy from a print salesperson or a print salesperson with expertise in your line of business? No brainer, eh?
People want to buy from people who know their business simply because they don't want to train the trainer. Doing this feels like a waste of time and effort. Affinity is a good thing. Widget people feel comfortable around widget people. Banking people think other banking people add value. Buyers want access to your expertise and—here's the dirty little secret—are willing to pay for it. Expertise is differentiation. It's a leg up on competitors for doing nothing other than being yourself.