It happened again. [Actually, it happens pretty regularly.] I received an email – in this case, a LinkedIn message – from a company representative promoting a discount on their services for the summer.
In general, I’m opposed to salesy emails to begin with… but this one, like so many others, completely missed the mark with me. The note was promoting services targeted to market research firms and independent moderators. Our firm is neither of those.
Why do people responsible for sales & marketing think it’s OK to just blast out email sales pitches to anyone and everyone on their list?! It’s just lazy!
I guess they are hoping they’ll get lucky and that one of the recipients might actually need the services they’re selling at the time they send the email. Yup… that would be lucky.
Why don’t these people take one minute to see if the recipients they are sending to are appropriate for the message? And in this case – it would have been especially easy… they were already in LinkedIn, for goodness sake. Just one click on my profile picture would have taken them to my profile page and shown them what we do. I’ll tell you why they don’t do it… they’re lazy!
Not in LinkedIn? Fine… how about visiting our website?
I [sort of] get it… you need a little revenue bump or you’ve got a sales quota to hit and email is a quick, low-cost way to communicate. Fair enough… but before you blast, take the time to go through your database and clean it up. Segment everyone into the appropriate buckets: by company type, by industry vertical, by size, by geography, etc. It’s one of the reasons you have a CRM. Then you can send targeted messages to specific lists.
But no-o-o-o… that would actually require some effort… some work. Instead, you just blast the email out to 1,000 people and cross your fingers. Lazy!
And it’s not just email marketing that’s the problem…
- How many firms take the time to create a sales & marketing plan to guide them… and how many are just wingin’ it?
- How many take the time to measure their sales & marketing efforts and learn from the results?
- How many have their salespeople focus on [unproductive and prospect-irritating] cold calling… rather than taking the time to establish a lead-generating marketing effort?
- How many firms have a website that hasn’t been updated in 5 or more years?
- How many firms have a blog, but are lucky if they post to it 3-4 times a year?
- How many have a Twitter account that was established several years ago and now has all of a dozen Tweets?
I could go on. The point is this… being successful at sales & marketing requires a sustained effort and commitment. Being lazy – and not thinking through and planning what you’re going to do – is not only ineffective, it can also polarize those you are most trying to attract.
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- “I Hate Selling!” – Part 1: Developing New Clients
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