Be the Business Other Businesses Want to Hear From
By Nelson Smith, Sales Manager
January 20, 2021
We are a “put that soup in the microwave and heat up for 2 minutes” society. You have one shot at making that very first impression. So ask yourself why someone would want to talk to you about business.
A lot of us like “lists,” for example to-do lists. Everyone wants to get things off the list and move on to a new list. New lists seem fresher and shinier than an old list with all those strike-throughs on it. So here is a new and shiny list of ways YOU can grab onto and build a bridge from your business to another business.
1. Research, my dear boy, RESEARCH
It’s a little like dating someone, you don’t get to move on in a relationship if you don’t learn whether they will be someone you want to keep moving on with. Same thing in business. Research to make sure you can HELP.
Sure, everyone can do better and it seems that those who appear to need help will be those who can benefit from the relationship the most. You may benefit from your spouse taking out the garbage, lifting the seat in the restroom, cutting the grass, and making sure all facial hair makes it to the drain. This is not any different from working with a company that can benefit from what you offer. When you call on a business, you must know things about them, know about what they need, know about the industry – you know, be smart but not too smart. You still need to listen 60% and talk 40%, but YOU will engage with another business so much more if you sound intelligent about what they do and are fascinated by it. People love talking about themselves, so get them to do just that! Ask them questions!!!
2. Present to them, don't sell them.
Tell them you would like to PRESENT something to them that would help in a given area to improve their business once you have identified a goal or a problem that needs solving. Otherwise do not do it. You have to have something to solve or introduce and tell how it is going to increase an area of their business.
3. Break the ice
Be congenial. No one likes to talk to a machine, so don’t act like one. Talk first about things peripheral to your purpose. Find common ground and ask questions. Be interested and interesting. Be their equal, not their subordinate.
These three steps will go a long way in growing your business when you help other businesses to grow.