Since 1993, control of the three major elements of your customer relationships – product, information, and buying decision – has shifted from your business to your customer. This marketplace transition is, by definition, a Biblical proportion paradigm shift from the original, 10,000-year-old Age of the Seller, to the new Age of the Customer.
This shift has created many disruptions across the marketplace, but none more than to the discipline of professional selling. More specifically, the element that has been disrupted most is business-to-business prospecting.
If your sales effort isn’t getting the job done, it’s probably not because your sales team isn’t working hard enough, or has forgotten how to close – a process that has not been disrupted. It’s because the rules of prospecting have been turned upside-down. Here are four facets to this prospecting shift:
1. The era of buyers accepting prospecting cold calls is over. Cold calling was never high-percentage, but in the Age of the Customer, it’s a fool’s errand.