Are You Fishing in an Empty Pond?
Have you ever heard anyone use the excuse “I just don’t have anyone to call on!”? Fishing in a pond without fish is not fun. Our job is to find the ponds that have fish. There is a large body of water that a lot of salespeople seem to forget to fish in and there are 3 main pools of water you can pull from to fill your pipeline. The large body of water that is the holy water for salespeople that will keep them alive forever is REFERRALS!
3 Referral Pools
- ABC Lake– Asking for a referral from every person you meet
- Old Man Joe’s Farm Pond– Calling on existing clients and “farming your book of business” and asking for referrals
- Fish Hatchery– Developing a network of referral power partners who send business to you
At the Southwestern Company we have seen true sales professionals who know that prospecting is a vital ingredient in the recipe for success. In fact, prospecting should be one of your daily tasks. As you may have heard before, prospecting can make or break your sales effort – which is exactly why you need to do it well…but what does it take to be “good” at prospecting?
First of all, it’s important to keep in mind that prospecting is more than just a part time task…it is your livelihood. Prospecting should not be a duty that’s left only to “slow” times. Continued prospecting ensures constant growth, and can minimize income and production slumps. Your prospecting efforts should be viewed as an investment in the future success of your business. Basically, it’s an investment in your long term goals. If you’re consistently seeking out new leads, you guarantee yourself an audience regardless of market status.
Secondly, you should recognize that prospecting is a discipline. Rory Vaden the Co-founder of Southwestern Consulting a Southwestern Company says “Success is never owned, it’s only rented, and the rent is due every day.” It won’t matter how “good” you are if you don’t have the discipline to see it through. Much of being a successful sales person is perseverance and practicing a solid work ethic. Set prospecting activity goals for yourself and use a schedule to get there. Commit yourself.
And finally, prospecting should be viewed as a task that requires both quality AND quantity. Prospect well, but prospect often. Many sales professionals at the Southwestern Company swear by the “triple rule” that says your prospecting efforts should exceed your expected sales by three times. For example, on the small scale, if you wanted to sell 3 products, you should prospect 9 potential clients!
Remember: never lose sight of what needs to be done!Get a handle on the commitment you’ve made to your own success and stick to your goals. Make sure you are “fishing” like a pro and asking for referrals. Ask yourself, are you reallytaking advantage of available resources? Are you procrastinating? If you are not working at your full potential get a coach or accountability partner to help you make sure you’re fishing in the right ponds and consistently have you line in the water. For more info on coaching go to