No matter what business or organization you might be in, there is likely some element of sales or business development involved.
It’s a job not for the faint of heart. You hear “no” many more times than “yes” — or you may not hear back at all. As far as a personality that works best in this environment, you’ve either got it or you don’t.
And Coles Marketing’s Lisa Deremiah has it — in spades.
Doing business with people
“I always have a list of potential clients I want to get in touch with,” Deremiah said. “I look at specific industries we do well with or want to get more involved with, and I do a lot of research online.” What’s she looking for?
An outdated website. No social media presence. Lack of media relations. A sales or business development professional will attempt to make a needs assessment even before reaching out to the client or customer.
“I try to find out who makes the marketing decisions and get them on the phone if possible,” she said. “And if that doesn’t work, I try to capture their email address and reach out to them that way.” But that’s certainly not her ideal situation.
“Technology has, of course, made some things easier and more efficient, but not everything. It’s definitely harder to get a face-to-face meeting now than it was five or 10 years ago, but I think face-to-face contact is still very important. People do business with people.”
Once the connection is made, Deremiah gives her pitch, which includes the reason she is calling, a brief background of Coles Marketing’s services and the opportunity to follow up with a meeting.
Positive pieces of business development
“It’s about follow up and consistency,” she said. “Maybe it’s a brush off, but if I connect with someone who is willing to do a follow-up call or email, that means they might want to work with us in the future.”
She has other advice for being more effective in a sales or business development position:
- Be nice. Have a positive attitude on the phone. And make a good first impression in person — be polite, arrive on time, dress properly and have a firm handshake.
- Listen more. A business relationship is much like a personal relationship. If you don’t click, you’re not going to move forward with the business — so listen to their needs more, and talk about your own accomplishments less.
- Know your product. “I’m the first impression of Coles Marketing to potential clients, so I have to be knowledgeable about all we do and all we can offer,” Deremiah said.
- Find out the answers. Go into your initial meeting as more of a fact finder. And if a question is asked you don’t know the answer to, make it a point to find out.
- Perfect follow-up skills. Whether it’s a handwritten thank you, an email or a phone call, take the time to follow up after your meeting.
- Offer a helpful tidbit. Part of your follow up can be sending a piece of helpful information — a case study demonstrating how your company has solved a problem; a website to check whether or not their website is mobile friendly; or an article appropriate to their industry.
One step closer to a yes
And finally, keep your promises. “I do what I say I’m going to do to the best of my ability,” Deremiah said. “That creates trust and lays a positive foundation.”
What about the frustration of getting all the “no” responses? It’s all part of the job.
“You have to not let it tear you up,” she said. “That’s why having a positive attitude is so important. Plus, every ‘no’ is one step closer to a ‘yes.’”
Interested in talking with Lisa about what Coles Marketing can offer your business? Call her at 317-571-0051 ext. 104 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.Edit this post
Categories: 2015 August Newsletter, Newsletters | Tags: Tags: business development, Coles, Coles Marketing, Coles Marketing Communications, communications, communications Indianapolis, Indiana, Indianapolis, marketing, media relations, photography, Public Relations, sales, social media, web, Web Design, website
While munching on a delicious macadamia nut cookie, I began thinking about the Facebook Fan page that I was offering advice on for one of our clients, Mark Leader, a real estate sales speaker/trainer. Mark already has a personal profile page with more than 1,800 friends, which is kept as up-to-date as possible with new status updates, links to blogs, pictures and upcoming events.
But Mark asked me to research a Fan page and what kind of exposure it would bring. I hesitated on becoming a “fan” of the Fan page — only because I was aware of how much growth and interaction he had already seen on his profile page. It also seemed that a personal profile page offered far more in the way of loading videos, adding links and creating that real, personal experience with his “friends.”
So I looked into it and found some very interesting articles.
- Facebook Group vs. Facebook Fan Page: What’s Better? Fan pages are visible to unregistered people and are thus indexed, while groups allow you to do more in the way of viral marketing through the “bulk invite.” The article also says that pages are generally better for long-term relationships with your fans, readers or customers. And I knew long-term relationships were important to Mark — so maybe this was going in the right direction.
- Why You Need to Make a Facebook Fan Page for Your Web site Now! This is a great post that also brings up the idea of sending “updates to fans,” helping to build a database of users. And the “viral” aspect of a Fan page is helped by the news feed — so when someone joins a Fan page, it is published for all their Facebook friends to read.
My conclusion is that while I still may not yet be a PERSONAL fan of the Facebook Fan page, it obviously offers several benefits to those who choose to create one-so I recommended Mark go for it! Happy Facebooking!Edit this post