I’ll Be Honest, This Isn’t Another Sales Pitch

Another laughable piece of email spam hit my inbox today. As a result, I feel compelled to get right back up on my soap box. I’m begging all sales and marketing folks to listen up, but more importantly, I am appealing to sales management. Random content and poorly constructed messaging is NOT helping you achieve your numbers.

Sooo…let’s start with the email I received and go from there. By the way, I don’t call people out so names and video link were removed.

“Hi Barbara,

I’ll be honest, this is not “another sales pitch” from Sales :) Instead, I’d like to send you a 2-minute demo video of XYZ’s Customer Success Management solution.

We are VC backed ($9M Series A) by Battery Ventures and our key customers include Marketo, DocuSign, Xactly, Jive, Informatica, YouSendIt, etc.

One of our core value props is “Success for All” and we would like to offer everyone a 1-on-1 with our Customer Success experts to simply discuss best practices (reducing churn, structuring your customer-focused team, increasing up-sells, etc).

Who is the best person to speak with about Customer Success? Let us know if there’s someone else who heads up those efforts.

-Signed…Clueless Account Development Manager”

WAKE UP!

As a sales leader it is time to start addressing what I consider to be a pretty serious sales problem. Intentions don’t matter, but your prospects perception does. This spam email approach doesn’t further a sales opportunity, it cuts it off at the knees.

Let me break down the problem for you by assuming that this account development manager works for you.

Not another sales pitch from sales? Really? This is a pitch even if it did not come from sales. Prospects see through this kind of communication. They are not going to drop what they are doing to watch a demo video that came from a stranger. Why should they? They merely hit delete without giving it a second thought. As for the smiley face…uh, I just can’t go there.

Clever girl says that your company is backed by VC money. That is important because…??  Is that an attempt to convince someone that the company is stable? Lots of companies backed by VC money fold. I don’t think I’d use that as a benefit statement.

Key customers are mentioned. Are you sure they helping your sales cause? Are they even relevant to the receiver of the email?

One of your core value props is “success for all”…what the heck does that mean? Why in the world would your prospect even care?

You want to give your prospect the gift of a 1-1 call with an “expert” to discuss best practices and that’s it? Your prospect isn’t stupid. They know your rep is trying to book a sales call. At least be honest and admit it. If you are serious about educating without expecting anything then host a webinar. Bring a panel of experts together that educate and challenge your prospects to think differently about their business. Wow them and earn the right to move to the next step.

Who is the best person to talk to? If you don’t know who the right person is then why send the email in the first place? I know why. It is a fishing expedition. Nobody is taking the time to properly target the messaging. Confusing activity with effectively driving a sales result is a big mistake and costing you time and money.

I am an ardent supporter of using social media and other technologies as part of the sales process. It is the people behind the technology that worries me. When your prospects can tune you out faster than you can say boo, shouldn’t that suggest to you that some changes are in order?

Wake up…fix your messaging…your revenue and pipeline is suffering!

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