Can we have a conversation?

You may be struggling to develop new business because you’re asking your prospects the wrong question. Think of it like dating or hiring. Would you respond well to getting this asked of you right off the bat?

“Do you want to go out with me?”

“Do you want to hire me?”

Probably not. If you said yes, you’d be committing to someone you know nothing about.

It’s the same with new business. When you push the hard sell on your prospects, all they hear is this random stranger asking them,

“Do you want to buy my product / service?”

Your Prospect

Even if they don’t show it, this is how they’re feeling.

When they’re leads, that’s a different story. But until you have that phone call to vet them properly, the question you should be asking is,

“Can we have a conversation?”

Even so, not everyone will be ready for that conversation with you. They need to see what’s in it for them. Job seekers must demonstrate what they can bring to the table during interviews—weaknesses and all, says Fast Company. Potential dates need to demonstrate attractive behavior to the party they’re asking out. The equivalent in new business development comes in the form of offering solutions, not sales pitches. If you’re consistently emailing your prospects about what you can solve for them, and you give them enough time to warm up to those conversations, you’ll get the answers you want to hear.

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