“Focus on conversations over conversions. Engineer your entire outbound process around starting conversations with your prospects.” – Jason Bay in today’s Tip 891
How do you start a conversation with your prospects?
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today’s tip comes from Jason Bay. Jason is Chief Prospecting Officer at Blissful Prospecting. He helps reps and sales teams who love landing big meetings with prospects—but hate not getting responses to their cold emails or feeling confident making cold calls. Here he is:
Jason Bay: My tip for today is the importance of conversations over conversions. So in marketing with my business, for example, and this is who I really learned this lesson from, is my business coaches, when they talk about marketing a conversion doesn’t that happen without a conversation. So, for example, if someone does not talk to me, they will not buy my stuff, right? So put very simply, the training programs and the coaching programs I have with companies are large enough to where people have to talk with me, have an actual conversation in order to buy it.
So if I engineer my whole marketing process around conversions, so sending emails to them that says “Click here to buy this,” “Click here to sign up,” or I’m doing outbound on them and I reach out and say, “I’d love to do a meeting with you. Click here to book it using my Calendly link.” In my experience, the conversion is actually much less when I go for the conversion and engineer the process of converting the person instead of getting them to respond to something.
So how does this relate to outbound and starting conversations versus going for conversions?
If you imagine a sales funnel, most outbound pipelines do not look like a funnel. They look like a T. They really fat at the top. You reach out to one hundred people and you get one person to respond. It looks like a T and maybe that one person wants to take a meeting or maybe they don’t.
So you got to think about is how can I, instead of convert my prospects into meetings, that being the attention. Think about how can I start a conversation with my prospects? How can I just get people to raise their hands so I can see who’s actually engaging? Because if I can see who is engaging, I can actually create a funnel. So imagine if you had 20 or 30 out of every hundred people respond, even if half of them were not interested. You can work with the noninterest. It’s you can call them, you can email them back, you can nurture them. There’s all kinds of things. But you can’t really do anything with people they don’t respond. They don’t pick up the phone and they don’t respond to an email or LinkedIn connection request. You can’t really do anything with them.
So what are some actionable ways that you can create conversations?
So I’ll give you a couple. One of them is when you’re doing a cold call, don’t ask for the meeting at the top of the cold call. I know this goes against a lot of advice actually on LinkedIn, but if you say, “Hey, my name’s Jason with Blissful Prospecting. I was calling you Joe because I noticed that you have a sales development team of a couple of dozen people and I wanted to see if we could meet up later this week or next. What is your calendar look like?” Or “Hey, I’d love to tell you about our training programs that are helping people overcome X, Y, Z problems and get A, B, C results.” I’m asking them to commit to something they don’t even really have a rapport established with me and there’s not even a conversation there. All they did was say hello. And then I went right into my thing.
The odds of that converting are much, much, much lower than you starting a conversation with someone and thinking of a good open-ended question to ask them. So ask open-ended questions instead of making your pitch. “Hey, Jason with Blissful Prospecting. I’m really curious. One of the things I’m hearing a lot right now. Is it sales leaders who want their reps to pick up the phone? But they’re finding that their prospects don’t want to talk to them. I’m curious, what do you guys do to make prospects want to actually have conversations with your reps? What are you guys doing right now?” An open-ended question like that to get them talking. I can actually have a conversation now, right? And I can make it about something that’s important to them with your emails. It’s the difference between a soft versus a hard call to action.
So instead of asking for the meeting every single time at the end of a call or email, which I don’t think it’s bad, by the way, to do that, mix it up a little bit and ask questions like this, interested in chatting further or you can ask an open question. “I’m curious, how are you handling this right now? Is this a problem you’re running across? Does it make sense to chat further? Would it make sense to chat further about how companies like X, Y, and Z are solving this problem?”
So think about how you can start conversations when you connect on LinkedIn. Don’t make the very next thing that you do asking for a meeting. Share some helpful content with them and ask them what their thoughts are, and it could be as simple as that.
So if we engineer this process around starting conversations, you can get those 20-30% reply rates. And again, half of them might not be interested right away, but at least you’re seeing who’s raising their hand and who’s responding to your communication so you can focus on that.
So that’s my tip for today. Focus on conversations over conversions. Engineer your entire outbound process around starting conversations with your prospects.
Scott Ingram: For more outbound tips from Jason, check out his Blissful Prospecting podcast. We’ve got links for you at DailySales.Tips/891.
Once you’ve done that. Be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip. Thanks for listening!