The Worst First Impression
The first time I saw this approach used, it alarmed me. Last spring, a Branch Manager from a local investment company sent me an email stating he had “ … been trying to reach you but have not heard back.” It horrified me to think I had missed a call or an email. But when I checked the history in my phone as well as my inbox and found no evidence of any attempt, I realized something else was going on here.
Kindly: I was misled.
Truth: The Manager lied intentionally.
The Manager in question (let’s call him “Eric” because that’s his name) must have attended a seminar where this approach is taught because since then, I have seen it multiple times. Within the last week, in fact, my wife was the recipient of a similar email from a software development company in which she, too, was told she’d missed a message.
Since when is this a good idea?
At best, this approach says “you owe me something.” At worst, the approach is flat out despicable. Either way, it speaks to the character of the sender and the company they represent.
After some consideration, I emailed “Eric” back to ask, “I am curious to learn if this prospecting approach works on people. Do they actually believe you’ve attempted to reach them?” Translation: Hey Eric, I know you are a liar and you know you are a liar. He emailed back that he was going on vacation but would be back in touch when he returned.
That was a year ago. I’m still waiting, Eric.
Maybe he is still sitting by the pool, having bet big on GameStop. Maybe he emailed me and I didn’t see it (what are the odds of that?). Or maybe he called and it didn’t register on my phone.
Or maybe he was caught in a lie.
Nawwwwwww! He’s in sales. Trust is at the core of his existence. To start off a relationship with anything less than the truth is unthinkable. It would be over faster than you can say, “TD Ameritrade.” Just think of the number of people I would tell the story to: My friends, my relatives …
… my blog.
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Bill Farquharson is a respected industry expert and highly sought after speaker known for his energetic and entertaining presentations. Bill engages his audiences with wit and wisdom earned as a 40-year print sales veteran while teaching new ideas for solving classic sales challenges. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (781) 934-7036. Bill’s two books, The 25 Best Print Sales Tips Ever and Who’s Making Money at Digital/Inkjet Printing…and How? as well as information on his new subscription-based website, The Sales Vault, are available at salesvault.pro.