As you sell, there are certain types of prospects you will encounter that should be avoided. These prospects will waste your time, and winning their business would cost you far more than your time. Your time is better spent with your dream clients. One key to your success will be identifying these prospects quickly and moving on.
These are the prospects you should avoid:
- Price Shoppers: Avoid any prospective customer who reveals their current price with your competitor and suggests that they will meet with you if you can do better. If the only motivation for change is a lower price, then there is no real value you can create as there is no outcome that is worth paying more to obtain. Besides, your bottom-feeding competitor’s will undercut you by another penny to win the business.
- Unsolicited RFP Requesters: Avoid prospects who invite you to respond to their Request for Proposal without ever having met you. There is no value in being column fodder for an RFP that you have 0.0% chance of winning. If you can’t get beyond arms-length, your time and effort is better spent with prospects who will meet with you face-to-face, or virtually face to virtual face.
- Responsibility Avoiders: Avoid any prospect who confesses your competitor’s sins and failings when you recognize that their challenges have nothing to do with your competitor and are really your prospect’s unwillingness to change. You’ve no doubt experienced this, and if you haven’t, you will. Once you know that your prospect’s real problems are not your competitor’s fault, you also know that your prospect is unwilling to change.
- Dominators: Avoid any prospect who reveals a belief that you are a vendor and, as such, should be subservient. You sell from the position of a peer. You work as a trusted advisor. You are consultative. If you allow them to dominate you, you are cannot be a value creator.
- Freeloaders: Avoid prospects who are going to require a massive amount of work without the willingness or ability to pay for what they need. Anyone can have anything they want, as long as they are willing to pay for it. But wanting things and not being willing to pay for those things is a poor combination and not one you want to deal with. Invest your time with those who are going to make the necessary investments for the results they want.
- Unqualified: Avoid every prospect who does not perceive value in what you do and how you do it. Even if they want to buy, neither of you will ever be happy working together. Your time is better spent identifying, pursuing, and working with people who value you.