Are you Pitching & Chasing Unqualified Prospects?

    Posted by Peter Caputa on May 22, 2013 11:29:00 PM

    The other day, I posted about how I've stayed true to a helpful sales philosophy. It's not about me selling something. It's about me figuring out whether I can help someone or not. Sometimes, helping them involves them buying my solution. Sometimes, it doesn't.

    Here's a bit more about my sales philosophy that I wrote in email to one of my sales reps: 

    I imagine you know this, but I am a hard ass about qualifying (and disqualifying) prospects. The way I see it is that I think sales is all about helping people... who want and need my help. Therefore, I don't want to waste time trying to sell someone who I don't think I can help, or who doesn't want my help. I would rather spend that time helping someone else who wants and needs my help. So, I'm particular about who I spend time with. I would much rather rule someone out (respectfully) so that I can spend more time putting someone else in my funnel.

    The only thing that a salesperson truly controls is whether they've put enough opportunities into their funnel. Best way to ensure they do that is to spend as much time doing that, and be careful to avoid wasting time with people who don't want or need their help.

    Therefore, whenever I approach a sale, my goal is to answer the question, "Can I actually help this person/company or not?" I'm trying to make my own conclusion. I don't care if the answer is yes or no. It just has to be one or the other and I want to answer the question as soon as possible.

    Some prospects think they can figure out whether I can help them better than I can figure it out. They're wrong. They have no clue how I help people no matter how much they've read about me, my company or my product. I am much better at quickly figuring out if I can help someone because I've done this 1,000s of times. I've diagnosed company's sales and marketing practices 1,000s of times. I've seen it all. I can diagnose it quickly with a series of questions.

    This philosophy can be really hard for a salesperson to embrace.  Salespeople are afraid of disqualifying prospects. Salespeople are afraid to ask tough questions to figure out whether a prospect really needs, wants and can take advantage of their product. Salespeople can make sales by giving unqualified pitches.

    But, as a salesperson, I know that I won't convince someone to buy my product unless they need it and want it. I can get lucky and pitch the right person. But, more often than not, salespeople who give unqualified pitches are not going to close the deal. As a market gets more competitive or they have less demand, these salespeople will really struggle.

    How do you qualify or disqualify a prospect? How much time are you spending making unqualified pitches and chasing prospects who don't want your help? How much of that time could you be spending talking to more people who do want and need your help?

    Follow Co-Grow

    Subscribe to Email Updates

    Recent Posts

    Posts by Topic

    see all