By Joanne Gore
“Hi. My name is Frank and I work for an award-winning printing shop. We use the latest technology to bring you the best product. We do it quicker than anyone else and our prices can’t be beat.”
Does this sound familiar? Do you use these, or similar, words when calling on prospects? Does it work?
I can tell you that as a Print Buyer… you haven’t sold me. Sure you’ve said all the “right” things. You’ve made me consider the possibility of maybe giving you a job to quote sometime in the unforeseen future. But do you have me wanting to learn more? Nope.
I recently came across this great presentation on slideshare identifying 20 shocking sales stats: http://www.slideshare.net/JakeAtwood1/20-shocking-sales-stats
Here are a couple that stood out:
- The best time to cold call is 4 – 5pm.
- Tuesday is the worst day to prospect
- It takes an average of 8 cold call attempts to reach a prospect.
- 80% of sales require 5 follow-up calls after the meeting. 44% of salespeople give up after 1
So what will it take for me to answer my phone or read your email? What will it take for me to say, “yes…I’m interested in learning more”.
Prove to me that you understand my business. What challenges is my industry facing? What keeps me up at night? Who is my competition? How much print am I currently producing? (here’s a hint: visit my website and see if the company attends a lot of events/tradeshows). What have you achieved for a similar business from which my company can benefit?
Speak my language. Speaking to someone in a marketing role is quite different than someone in procurement. Marketing people are interested in trends, references, case studies, metrics, etc. Am I a member of a LinkedIn group? Does the company have a LinkedIn page? Comment on some of the discussions.
Ask me questions. What is my print budget? Do I rely solely on email marketing campaigns? Why/why not? What do I look for in a print provider? What has been my best experience? What has been my worst? What would make me want to try your services?
Teach me. What’s new in the world of print, paper, inks, finishes, special treatments, etc. Why is one paper more expensive than the other? When should I choose offset over digital? How can I take advantage of other print runs? What tutorials and/or best practices can you share with me?
To be really affective you need to do more than go “dialing for dollars”. Research the company. Research the competition. Research the buyer. And remember, no matter what the industry, buyers require an average of seven (7) reminders before they take action. That means you have seven shots at capturing my attention and maybe, just maybe, getting my business.
About Joanne Gore
Joanne Gore has nearly twenty years of marketing and communications experience, including corporate and small office environments. A true mentor, Joanne marries her passion for marketing with clear, creative feedback and inspiration. Joanne develops lead generation and conversion programs, re-brands product lines, implements social media strategies, manages PR and media relations campaigns, overhauls websites, develops highly targeted marketing campaigns, and delivers results.
Joanne is an industry speaker, currently sits on the board of Xplor Canada, and is a regular contributor to “News from the Printerverse”. She is also a returning mentor for the Richmond Hill Small Business Enterprise Centre’s Summer Company, an Ontario Government initiative for youth entrepreneurship & employment.
Joanne graduated as a Graphic Designer and, prior to joining the corporate world, worked in the print industry as an art director, typesetter, and printing consultant. Joanne is a marketing geekette by day, a fitness instructor by night, and a mom 24-7.