On the weekend I went to the mall and visited a national department store. They see themselves as being “upscale”, as evidenced by the frontal attack of make-up and perfume counters fortifying the front entrance. And as you may have guessed, each of those counters had a plastic looking heavily made up young lady, armed with a bottle of smell, ready to shpritz unsuspecting victims trying to get out of the rain.
The first couple of shpritzers I encountered, were nice enough to ask, and promptly backed off once I declined. One did ask a few questions, but once I politely explained my lack of interest and why, she understood, gave me a post card of the product for reference.
One of these creatures, she clearly was a pro, as there was no hint of skin under the triple layer of goo that covered her face, and no doubt explained her perma-smile; she was clearly a “don’t take no for an answer” typ-o-gal. I politely declined her offer to alter my aura, she asked why, not nicely but in a demanding way, gave her the same answer as I did to the others, but with a different outcome. She shpritzed me anyway; what a bee with an itch. Before I was ready to share my opinion with her, she shifted her perm-smile slightly, and said that the combination of grapefruit, rose, and “just a hint of tobacco” complimented my look. I too shared with her what I thought complemented her look and moved on, sort of; because while I may have put some distance between her and I the smell lingered, no not the cologne, the smell of a bad sale and sales person.
Then it struck me, change the product, and the weapon from a shpritzer to a phone, and this scenario is played out daily between some B2B sales people, and their unsuspecting victims, I mean prospects. Many are like the first group described, approach, take in their response, and react accordingly. That could be revisiting a bit further on, presenting an alternative point that may put a different light on the question for the prospect. But whichever course, they make sure not to offend the buyer while leaving the door open to future opportunities.
But sadly, many sellers act like Perma-Shpriter, and just continue to plough where there is little hope of success, and in the process destroying any opportunities for future engagement. While I understand that every opportunity could be valuable, but that value may materialize down the road, acting in a way that forever destroys that chance is fatal and unnecessary. You can stay top of mind using the tools available to the modern B2B seller, better to make a positive impression with the way you handle the buyers’ response, than to leave your mark like a cheap shpritz.
- Know why people may or may not want to engage
- Examine and leverage your experience to see how to work with those who don’t give you an instant positive response
- Don’t shpritz, it’s just rude
What’s in Your Pipeline?