Are you afraid of looking incompetent when you prospect?

by Will Rotondi

When you’re prospecting, you want to make sure that a) you’re targeting the right business, and b) you’re talking to the right person.

If either of these isn’t accurate, your gut reaction is often to feel embarrassed or foolish. The reason? People don’t particularly enjoy appearing incompetent, especially the more pressure they put on themselves to be the best. And salespeople, you already have plenty of pressure to go around.

When you find out you’ve been barking up the wrong tree, you feel like you’ve wasted your time, and given a bad image of your company. Sound pretty accurate?

The fact is, prospecting isn’t an exact science. And the more you get involved in the realm of email prospecting, the wider your outreach becomes, which also means a greater chance that here and there you’ll come across someone who really just isn’t a fit.

That’s okay – it happens. Treat it as an opportunity if they actually respond, and use that to your advantage. If you’re still targeting the right company, just not the right person, thank them for reaching out and ask them for a referral. If they’re not the right company, simply remove that prospect from your correspondence and move on to who’s next.

The more you get bogged down in the details, the less likely you’ll meet your ultimate goal, which is to push more prospects into your normal sales funnel.

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