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7 Pitfalls of Using Email to Sell

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  • Ari Galper
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      Article Title: 7 Pitfalls of Using Email to Sell
      Article Author: Ari Galper
      Article Copyright: 2004-2005

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      7 Pitfalls of Using Email to Sell
      Copyright � 2004-2005 Ari Galper
      Unlock The Game�

      * Are you sending e-mails to prospects instead of calling them?

      * Is e-mail your selling medium of choice because it lets you
      avoid the rejection that you dread when you make real cold

      * Do you wait and wait for return e-mails from prospects that
      will give you the green light to move the sales process

      Sad but true, these days most people who sell for a living
      spend 80% of their time trying to communicate with prospects
      via e-mail instead of actually picking up the phone and
      speaking with them. Are you one of those people? If so, you
      aren't alone...but do you understand why you've turned to
      e-mail instead of personal contact? I think there are 2 core
      reasons that underlie this unfortunate trend:

      * Fear of rejection. The sheer negative force of anticipating
      rejection makes people turn to e-mail to generate new prospect
      relationships because it hurts less to not get a reply than
      to hear that verbal "no."

      * Getting blocked by gatekeepers and voicemail. When salespeople
      don't know how to break through the barriers of gatekeepers
      and voicemail, they start thinking, "Forget it -- it's not
      worth the aggravation, and it takes too much energy. I'll
      just e-mail instead."

      However, when you try to use e-mail to offer your product or
      service to someone who doesn't know you, you can't possibly
      establish the natural dialogue between two people that allows
      the trust level to reach the level necessary for a healthy,
      long-term relationship.

      We all know how much everyone hates e-mail spam, but even so,
      many salespeople are still sending introductory e-mails to
      decisionmakers. They feel that, because they're from a credible
      organization, they won't be associated with the negative image
      of a spam solicitor.

      However, these introductory e-mails typically contain the
      traditional three-part sales pitch -- the introduction, a
      mini-presentation about the products and services being offered,
      and a call to action -- and this traditional selling approach
      instantly tells the recipient of the e-mail that your only goal
      is to sell your product or service so you can attain your goals,
      and not theirs.

      If you're still using email to sell, watch out for these 7

      1. Avoid sales pitches. If you feel you must use e-mail to
      start a new relationship, make your message about issues
      and problems that you believe your prospects are having,
      but don't say anything to indicate that you're assuming
      that both of you are a match.

      2. Stop thinking that e-mail is the best way to get to
      decisionmakers. Traditional selling has become so ineffective
      that salespeople have run out of options for creating
      conversation, both over the phone and in person. However,
      it's best to view e-mail as a backup option only, not as a
      way to create new relationships. Try to use it primarily for
      sending information and documents after you've developed a
      relationship with a prospect.

      3. Remove your company name from the subject line. Whenever
      you put your company and solution first, you create the
      impression that you can't wait to give a presentation about
      your product and services. Your subject line should be a
      humble reference to issues that you may be able to help
      prospects solve.

      4. Stop conditioning your prospects to hide behind e-mail. When
      you e-mail prospects, it's easy for them to avoid you by not
      responding. Also, they get used to never picking up the phone
      and having a conversation with you -- and they may want to
      avoid you because they're afraid that, if they show interest
      in what you have to offer, you'll try to close them. This
      creates sales pressure -- the root of all selling woes. This
      avoidance becomes a vicious circle. If you learn to create
      pressure-free conversations, you'll find that you'll start
      getting phone calls from prospects who aren't afraid to call

      5. Avoid using e-mail as a crutch for handling sticky sales
      situations. Are prospects not calling you back? Many
      salespeople who call me for coaching ask how they can get
      themselves out of sticky situations with prospects -- but
      the e-mails they've sent have already triggered those
      prospects to retreat. It's tricky to come up with the
      correct softening language in an e-mail that will re-open
      a conversation with a prospect who has decided to close off
      communication --direct, person-to-person phone calls or
      meetings are much easier and more human.

      6. Avoid using "I" and "we." When you start an introductory
      e-mail with "I" or "we," you immediately give the impression
      that you care only about selling your solution, rather than
      being open to a conversation that may or may not lead to a
      mutually beneficial match between what you have to offer
      and the issues your prospect may be trying to solve. If you
      can change your sales language to a natural conversation,
      your prospect will be less likely to stereotype your message
      as a spam solicitation.


      7. If you can, stop using e-mail selling altogether. There is
      a way to renew your confidence and eliminate your reluctance
      to picking up the phone and have pleasant conversations with
      potential prospects. Learn a completely new way of working
      with gatekeepers that will get you past voicemail and to your
      decisionmakers without the rejection and frustration that are
      inevitable with traditional selling approaches.

      For all these reasons, you should think of e-mail as your last
      resort. If you can learn to pick up the phone without fear,
      start a trusting conversation with a gatekeeper, learn how to
      go beyond voice mail and find your decisionmakers, you'll join
      the thousands of people who have made the Unlock The Game�
      breakthrough the most natural and efficient way of generating
      sales opportunities.

      Ari Galper is the founder of Unlock The Game�, the only selling
      program completely focused on eliminating pressure from the
      sales process. His best-selling Unlock The Game� Self-Study
      Program continues to make in-roads in the U.S., UK, Australia
      and Canada. Visit http://www.UnlockTheGame.com to take a
      Free Test Drive!

      --- END ARTICLE ---

      Distribution Date and Time: Tue Jan 4 02:50:15 EST 2005

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