We’ve got the dirt on you

In my last blog, I compared the business prospecting process to the heroic effort it takes to find specks of gold in the Alaskan wilderness.

Gold miners strip off between 20-40 feet of overburden, which is the rock, soil and ecosystems that lie above the bedrock layer, which is most like to cradle specks and nuggets of gold among the rocks. Those rocks and surrounding dirt are then unearthed, trucked to the trommel and washed through the sluice until a few ounces of gold is all that’s left.

What strikes me about gold prospecting is the tremendous amount of dirt it takes to find just a few ounces of gold. PBS’s Frontline reports that it takes up to 30 tons of dirt to recover just one ounce of gold.

Prospecting – whether you’re in the Alaskan wilderness or the Atlanta, Seattle or Baltimore MSA – is a dirty business.

Much like the gold miners, sales teams have to sort through thousands of companies who don’t use their product, who can’t afford it, who use a competitor’s, who aren’t ready for it, who aren’t sophisticated enough for it, or who just aren’t interested in it. Somewhere in there, however, are companies who need your product, who can afford it and who will buy it.

It’s time consuming, tedious, frustrating and unrewarding to sort through that dirt. But you can’t get to the gold unless you do.

On the Discovery Channel show Gold Rush, they do a great job of explaining the gold prospecting process with animation. We have an animated cartoon, too, which we developed before we started watching Gold Rush. It explains our method of business prospecting. I wonder where they got that idea…

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