The Analogy of Analogies
Demand Generation and…Dating
I’m sure you’ve heard it a thousand times — when you were first training as an SDR, when you explained to people outside of the industry what you did, when your cheesy sales manager tried to crack a joke…demand generation is a lot like dating.
We know it’s a bit overkill to keep hammering that point home, but the fact of the matter is that this is a good analogy. A lot of the nuances associated with demand generation match up well with the dating game — the need for personalization, tip-toeing around when to reach back out, first impressions…the list goes on and on.
For all you SDRs out there looking for a real world application to the training you’re going through, look no further than some of our past blogs below:
“Some sales teams are swimming in dates with models, while many are eating TV dinners in their underwear every Friday night.” Avoid those lonesome Lean Cuisine evenings by employing some common sense to your prospecting — build a relationship without being a creep, have a plan of attack when you reach out, and keep your prospects needs in mind. You wouldn’t call someone 7 times the day after a first date, and the same can goes for your target accounts. Be smart when you prospect and use common sense to fuel your decisions.
What’s the opposite of a “creep?” Well it’s Ryan Gosling, isn’t that obvious? “Don’t be a creep” epitomizes a lot of what you should do while prospecting, and Ryan Gosling epitomizes a lot of what a creep isn’t. All the things you want in a date (aka Ryan Gosling) are things you want in an SDR. He’s not pushy, he isn’t tacky, and — above all else — he’s a great listener.
Active listening is one of the best traits that an SDR can have. Repeating what the prospect says, asking pointed questions and providing feedback are all great examples. It helps build a relationship with the prospect and gives you ammo for the next time you call. Most importantly, you don’t get cast off like the creep at the bar who can’t take a hint.
Sometimes you can do everything right, but the prospect just isn’t ready to commit to anything. It’s important to take the right steps to securing a long-term relationship in this scenario — if you’re too pushy you could drive the prospect away, but if you leave them with nothing they’ll have nothing to remember you by.
Jason Segel epitomizes this approach in Forgetting Sarah Marshall. He recognized that the timing was off, left his prospect (girlfriend) with a piece of content, kept on top of the interactions (an invite to the puppet musical), and encouraged his prospect to take the call to action (another chance at a relationship). Gentle persistence and a level-headed approach helped Jason’s character get another shot, and it could help you convert a prospect into a real sales opportunity.
Sometimes, prospect’s just aren’t that into you. Luckily, you can do something about it. There are things you can change about how you reach out, what tactics you rely on and how you represent yourself that will make prospects more attracted to you(r services).
Intelligent prospecting is like selective dating — you want to target the right people with the right message at the right time. Employing a “spray and pray” approach will do nothing to help your dating or prospecting game. At the same time, being too pushy is no way to portray yourself to a potential date or prospect. Employing a soft touch, both while prospecting and when asking for a second date can make or break the relationship. You want to represent yourself in the best way possible, and being too forceful or lackadaisical is not the way to go about that. Make sure you and your prospect (date) are on the same page and you represent yourself truthfully.
There’s no denying that cold calling and prospecting is tough work. “Some days you get the bear, but some days the bear gets you.” Even still, it’s important to persist through the downs of the job to get to the ups. Much like dating, each rejection is only a step closer to getting a yes. That can be a hard pill to swallow sometimes, but the legwork you put in to get the next qualified lead (or date) is the lifeblood of your teams revenue. The juice is worth the squeeze.
Yes, that Tinder. In the golden age of online dating, Tinder is a great resource for seeing what NOT to do when reaching out to prospects. Looking at failed introductory messages and seeing a lack of personalization, an immediate recognition of spam, and a failed attempt at damage control will lay out the steps to avoid when reaching out to your target accounts.
Make sure to check out the demandDrive website and Contact Us to learn more about our services!