Are You Hitting The Bullseye?
If you have been reading my blog for any length of time, you may know that I love to fly fishing for trout. There are several lakes within a 30 minute drive of my house. I can select anyone of those lakes and fly fish for trout and execute my skills and guess what? I will never catch a trout. Why? As they say, “There ain’t no trout in them lakes.” If I want to catch a trout I need to go to a designated trout stream or lake.
So what does this have to do with prospecting?
Do you know where your target audience hangs out and are you clear about what they want or what’s important to them?
Let me share a story to illustrate my point. On a recent trip to Glacier National Park, I came across one of the most beautiful lakes in the mountains. I was so excited. I located a feeder stream coming into the lake on a rocky sand bar that dropped off rapidly. The water was crystal clear and the most beautiful blue turquoise you have ever seen. Everything was perfect. I selected my favorite fly and began to present it. After 30 minutes of perfect casting, nothing! I selected my second favorite fly and went to work again. Nothing! This went on for about three hours. I was shocked. If I were a trout, I would have taken each one of those fly’s.
Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I wasn’t a trout. I went back into my fly box and picked the ugliest fly I could find. I was even embarrassed to tie it on, hoping that no other person on the planet would walk by and see it. I made a perfect cast and BAM! Within an hour I caught several of the most beautiful cutthroat trout. This little fly fishing experience taught me a valuable lesson about sales. Never assume you know what the prospect of customer wants. The only way to understand what the prospect or customer wants is to ask them. And guess what, they will move mountains to get it.
That is the first part of the story. When fishing for trout in a lake, they are constantly moving around looking for food. When fishing in rivers or streams you need to hit the bullseye. In other words it’s important you lay the fly in their feeding lane. Typically a trout will not move far to take the fly because they have to move out of a protected area such as a rock or deep pool, and fight the current. Not only do you have to select the right fly, you absolutely must hit the bullseye. If not, you will not catch a trout.
When meeting with a prospect or client are you clear about what they want and what’s important to them?