THE MATRIX OF PROSPECTING
Are you a business owner looking for new ways to meet the demands of your customers? Or are you looking for proving methods to secure new clients? Or is it a way to render your services more effectively? Understanding the matrix of prospecting is your pass to a new shore of success.
As a young man growing in the business world, I had no choice than to learn from trial and error. Although I had few tutors like John watt who gave me some of their valuable time (He passed away only a few years of after I started selling professionally), and also people like Brian Tracy that taught me through their materials (Never met him in person), every other thing I learned was from trial and error. With that been said, I will be using this article to pass on the combination of things I've learned out in the field through trial and error.
To fully understand the matrix of prospecting, you first need to understand the five laws that guide its philosophy. Some of these laws are laws you've heard of before, and some might sound odd the first time you hear them. But if you think about them meticulously and apply them in the marketplace, you would see firsthand how practical and helpful these laws are to your business.
THE FIFTH LAW: THE LAW OF STORYTELLING.
Storytelling is an essential and critical element of life. Many stories we hear today about great men of old still lingers in our mind, and we would also pass them to our children, and the chain goes on and on. Great teachers like Jesus Christ made fair use of storytelling and parables to answers questions of those who needed answers. But you may ask, what makes storytelling this effective and timely? The reason is that the human mind doesn't think in words, it relates well with pictures, as it means less stress on the body and mind.
So, as a business owner or sales representative, we need to be a great storyteller if we want returns on investment. It can be a short story about your product, a complete story about your services, or a story about your company; whatever your story is based off on, you need it to resonate with your customer and captivate their minds for a moment.
Think about how many people like to read great thrillers and great books such as Moby Dick, Warren piece, David Copperfield, and all these different books that have been so popular and relevant through time. What about the movie series on Netflix that people love? Many won't miss a single episode for anything in the world because they feel like they are part of the story, and they can resonate with every scene without letup.
Storytelling is a three step process which I call the three 3 s's (setup, struggle and solution). I learnt that off the internet many years ago, and it has been very productive and rewarding to both my customers and me. When telling a story, you want to setup the positioning of your story.
Let's just assume I'm going to tell a customer a story about my product. I would set it up by saying to them: "Mr. Customer, another school board such as yourself, was having a massive problem with maintaining their floor finish and they tried many different tactics and processes, but all were abortive."
With this narrative, I've gone from the setup, into the second phase of the second "S" which is the struggle. So if I set up that there are people just like them, I also set up that I'm talking to a school board. I would also tell a true story but a story that resonates with them and make sure it's not their direct competitor. I may say stuff like, do you know XYZ school board?
So now that I am done with the setup and struggle, I move to the third part which is the solution, and I have found that this works exceptionally well. So I get the setup, give the struggle, and then provide the solution. And what they found after I gave them the three s's is that, the Nova's floor finish I recommend as a solution was not only odorless and durable, it also had less dirt penetration then most finishes in the market.
What made my bid a success was, I gave them the setup (Explained the problem), I gave them the struggle and presented my product or services as the solution to the problem. All of this I did in the form of a story because people resonate with a good story. So in prospecting, you want to have a story, and it can be a long story; it can be a short story, but you want it to be a story.
The other thing about telling a story is, it differentiates you. It differentiates you when you have a story as to why your company is in business. Storytelling is part of your brand, part of your identity. Your story makes you memorable and like Seth Godin said: "In a crowded marketplace, fitting in is failure and in a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible." This means, you need to stand out and you can stand out by creating a story that differentiates you from the crowd.
You see, emotion evokes change not logic, and this is what really took me a long time in my career to understand. I always try to talk in a logical sense and my progress was not significant because logic has its place, but emotion creates change. It doesn't matter if there are tons of reasons against something, if someone has an emotional connection to that thing, they will make that change, if someone has an emotional connection to you, they will make that change, if they have an interest in it, they will make that change. They don't do this based on logic, they do it based on emotion, and it has been said that 100 percent of all decisions are based on emotion and Justified by logic.
I think that different times my life, I have been in a different emotional state. Maybe I was against something, and then my child started to cry, and it changed my emotional state, and I then justified it with logic and maybe bought them that toy or whatever it was, I'm sure you can appreciate and you can identify with a story like that. This is what emotion does, and so when you tell a story, you create emotion, you create a visual picture in the mind of the buyer, and then they get an emotional attachment, and they remember you.
They may or may not make that change that day, but they will remember you, and like you because you've resonated with them.