The movie Glengarry Glen Ross from 1992 displayed the old-fashioned selling style as ABC, Always Be Closing. Spoiler alert for sellers: ABC has been replaced by Always Be Connecting.
I am to tell you today this is really Always Be Prospecting! It’s all about knowing who your ideal target is and connecting with them on a regular basis while prospecting anywhere, anytime. As an entrepreneur, you should always be prospecting no matter where you are.
On the lookout, 24/7
Years ago, I used to make sure my rack cards would easily fit into my purse when I was working at my Down to Earth Gardens farm. The farm was on a dirt road and I needed to have the map handy to guide people to find me. Even at the pub on a Friday night, you’d see me whip out a rack card to give to a new potential client.
At the same time, my truck had the website and company name lettered onto it which made me drive more carefully since I was easily identified. Soon, I landed a $2,500 landscaping job when I was shopping. My truck became my best mobile advertising vehicle!
In the city, prospecting is different – it’s a crowded market place. Just a few months ago, I needed a new passport and faced an hour’s wait. I struck up a conversation with my “waiting neighbor” that led inevitably to the ‘What do you do?’ Turns out he was launching a small biz sales program! I got a contract because I was open to talking to strangers.
That’s what networking and prospecting is all about – talking to new people who will become known to you as you develop a relationship that extends beyond just doing business together. Most B2B and even B2C rely on repeat business.
5 Things to know about prospecting
Prospecting comes down to:
- Knowing what your ideal client looks like (demographics)
- Knowing where they go and being around them – online and offline
- Having qualifying questions prepared for when you meet a likely new client
- Seeing opportunities every time you go out
- Asking for referrals from happy clients and colleagues so that you have warm calls
Who are you going to talk to today?