Posted on 8/24/2020 in Business and Strategy
By Sean Greene
Cold outreach is a part of my daily routine. Apart from the unwavering drive to build new relationships and the occasional rush in finally getting through to that account I’ve been steadily working for years, it’s a demanding component of my role that more often than not elicits an unfortunate response from an otherwise promising contact. Marketers, in particular, can be challenging, a good percentage of which can be resistant in their desire to develop their network beyond the ones they’re currently connected to as well those that are firm in their conviction that the rapid response of “I have a vendor” is somehow a catch-all that successfully stops a conversation well...cold.
The good news for them is, they are right. This is in fact a way to kill a cold call dead. YES! Another one cut off at the pass! Unfortunately, it’s also a short-sighted, knee-jerk reply that sidesteps the true intent behind the introduction in the first place.
It’s not about whether you HAVE a vendor, folks...it’s about securing a True Marketing Partner and what the relationship ultimately means for your business and your personal growth within it.
Take a moment to consider the following with respect to those driven to make time in their equally busy day that call with an introduction:
- When was the last time you had a review call with your vendor?
- What did the call include?
- Did your account manager deliver tangible results based on qualified data?
- Did you leave the call exhilarated, ideally more so than you were at the onset of your relationship?
- Were you an actual participant in the conversation or simply a spectator on the receiving end of a data dump?
- Did your account manager summarize action items and offer proactive recommendations in growing your strategy?
- Has your account manager remained consistent through your relationship or are you frustrated with an ongoing carousel of characters with repeated team turnover?
- And most important - are you seeing the ROI?
Let’s be honest here - finding a quality outsourced solution for a marketing partnership is hard. It can take months of research, endless conversations, the dissection of multiple proposals, and then the all-important consideration of fitting it into your budget (which is never as robust as you’d like it to be, right?). This is hard work people! So much so that maybe you just live with what you got in spite of that conviction that’s been burning away at you for far too long now - these guys simply aren’t up to snuff.
So the next time a company calls to introduce themselves, consider firstly that you represent a company that’s worth their time in reaching out to in the first place. Seriously, you landed at a good one and are a key player. Second, timing is everything and this author will be the first to acknowledge that on any given day, in managing any number of different fires that endlessly spring up - I’m simply not in the mood to engage in a discussion about [fill in the blank]. With that, first impressions are everything and the door swings both ways in business. Rather than toss out a token response and potentially slam the door shut on what just might be the beginning of a fruitful relationship, give that person at least a moment of your time. Hear them out and offer them a cordial response that either confirms the QUALITY and POTENTIAL of your standing vendor relationship. You could even suggest a time that might be better for the person to try you back, be it in a week, a few months, or perhaps around a time when you’re planning your budget & considering vendor relationships.
The person on the other end will respect your response and you’ll have potentially started down the road to a true partnership in favor of just managing a stable of “vendors”. We would love to build a true marketing relationship with you - reach out and let’s get the conversation started!
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