The Ten Commandments of Prospecting

By Bryce Sanders

If you had to pick one set of rules with staying power, the Ten Commandments tops the list.  A second set of ten commandments, specifically written for prospecting, has come to light.

  1. Thou shalt not imagine business comes to you. You must find it. You need some form of client acquisition strategy. It might be client-prospect dinners, cold calling, social media, networking, seminars, mailings or many other approaches. It must be active, not reactive.  You must be able to drive the process. It must target your market segment, not just anyone.
  2. Thou shalt not have a sour attitude when prospecting. It’s a driver of future revenue, not a necessary evil. Prospects can sense the enthusiasm (or lack thereof) in your voice, posture and attitude. Don’t overthink it. Once you get started and get into a rhythm, time passes quickly.
  3. Thou shalt prospect every day. Get it done early when you are fresh. Time block. Don’t skip it for four days and say you will spend all of Friday prospecting. You will end up calling in sick instead. Even the biggest producers allocate time to finding new business and new assets.
  4. Thou shalt use a script. Thou shalt not wing it and make up every conversation as you go along. You initially need to get the prospect’s attention, get them engaged and lower barriers. Sometimes they can make a comment or toss out a question that throws you off course. Working with a script allows you to easily get back on track.
  5. Thou shalt not take rejection personally. You approach someone for business. They say “Get lost.” Your entire relationship can be measured in seconds, not years. They don’t even know you. They either aren’t interested in buying now or don’t have money available. They’ve actually done you a favor and saved you time.

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