There are two basic ways to increase your chance to sell capital equipment. One is called interruption marketing and the other one creating value marketing. Guess which one is the most used and which one is the most successful? The worst kept secret is that it is value creating based sales/ marketing.
Interruption marketing literally interrupts – YOU. Messages pop up on your screen when you do not even expect it. Spam mails clutter your in-box. Clicking on web links first show some sort of commercial. There are many more examples. They make you mad and are extremely frustrating.
One particular pesky one may be found in blog and forum responses when well-meaning sales folks try sneaking in their company and personal contact information into comment and response sections. “We do this, that and the other thing, we are great, just give us a call and just start buying from us”. Do they really think anyone will seriously pay attention anymore to this scatter gun approach to sales?
Attention is such a scarce thing in our noisy social media world that interrupting the customer’s work achieves exactly the opposite: It turns the attention away and it lands the marketer into the junk folder. It is nothing but a dead end proposition.
Creating value is best delivered in genuine and free advice. Free? Yes, at least the overall assessment of a customer’s situation and pointing out the root cause of his issues goes a long way. Only when you have built up enough subject matter expertise can you be of help to anyone and you can deliver this advice. Once you do that built a web presence, help out in special interest group forums, start a blog, and hold presentations.
Do not get me wrong here, this is not the same as unpaid consulting. There is no need to be afraid that you will lose out on revenue. Just look at any forum and you will see that the top number one issue is that folks have a rather complex and broad challenge to figure out. Key problem is that they typically have issues where to even start isolating what their real problem is to begin with. That is where you can help.
Get them rolling with the basics and the 80/20 rule is that 80% of issue will not go anywhere anyway. Some customers never follow up, or they finally do have a solution, but they will never implement anything because they will never get the money to fix their issue. The 20% of cases may just turn into 80% of your future revenue. Neat, huh?
People will rely on you for honest and trustworthy advice. All you need to do is delivering some solid value that makes the customer better off. Most likely he will come back to you for more advice when he has another issue to solve. One simple shot gun spatter of your advertisements will not get you anywhere soon. People will only tune you out.
Work on increasing your skill sets and experience. Build and provide solutions. Build up your audience. Become a subject matter specialist. Seek outlets for your stuff and give it away. When customers do start buying from you (trust me, they will) steadily under promise and over deliver.
Does this take a little more time upfront to build your customer and sales base? Absolutely. Will this be much more sustainable? Most certainly. Just wait until the first word-of-mouth referrals hit your in-box.
P.S.: Use the comment box of this post for your cheap sales pitch and you and your mail will land in the “block sender” file folder. Interruption marketing does not work!