I like to think about selling in the old days. When I started selling, I used sweet technology like a pager. I would connect my pager to my voice mail and whenever someone left me a message it would alert me. I would stop at the nearest pay phone, folks – that’s a phone on the side of the road that you had to put coins (money) to make a call (the good ones were the height of my car’s rolled down window). People were shocked when I called them back in a few minutes knowing I was out of the office. At least it doesn’t feel this way, but that wasn’t too long ago. Things have changed (understatement). Technology has improved, but has it improved our selling?
Don’t Get Me Wrong
I love technology. I have made a career out of creating and selling hi-tech stuff. I had always said, however, that technology is only as good as the people who it serves. As much as that puts technology in a place of services, and not domination or thinking, it has changed a lot of things mainly communication.
I don’t think too many people will disagree with the notion that selling is a discipline in communication. The better the communicator you are the better you are of getting your point or idea across to a prospective buyer. I also don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to say that technology has greatly helped communication.
Email – The Point!
Email is killing selling because it has taken a common feeling of call reluctance and given it an easy out. It sounds like this:
Manager: Hey did you contact that account like I asked?
Salesperson: I sure did!
Manager: Well – what did they say
Salesperson: Nothing – I haven’t heard back
Email is great for certain things when it comes to communication like:
- Confirming appointments
- Sending backup or agreements
- Getting clarifications
No – Really – This is the Point!
What email can’t do is listen for someone’s reaction to let you know what’s going on in their head or to convey the passion you have for a topic no matter how many of these !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you use. Email doesn’t facilitate a back and forth conversation that leads to an important direction. Email doesn’t take the place of good old fashion, calling, networking and meeting the people – you know – relationships! You don’t need a pager and a payphone to get back to the basics all you need is courage!
About The Author:
Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information.