(Illogically) Help Me Be Your Customer

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Think through the mind of your customer... and ask yourself if you are "illogically" wooing your customer.  Are you doing what no one else will do to make them successful?  Are you working to guarantee that your customer hits a home run by working with you?

It's not logical.  In fact, it doesn't really make sense from a "nuts-and-bolts" perspective.

But like anything, when you swing the opposite direction, you get a better perspective.  Instead of being illogically helpful, let's look at being illogically awful.  Let's look at the bad emails we send and see how we can make them better.

The endless onslaught of crappy emails has accelerated.  It has gotten serious.  For some reason, crazy sales people who need to have a strong Q4 all decided that they need to mass email the world in the hopes that we will magically take an interest in their nonsensery.

There is no interest in a relationship or learning what might be important to you or me.  It's all about their email and how they have access to an amazing service that we "can't miss out on".  I want to drag them into my office, throw them on the floor and let them know this simple fact that they are overlooking:

We have thoroughly enjoyed not "enjoying" your service; and if your current care of us is any indication of your future care, then we are best served to not be your customer..... ever -- for the sake of our health.

It is such a horrible experience to get these emails.  It's like a sudden nausea that has me tasting a little stomach acid in my mouth.  I feel sick but my head's not warm.  I just don't feel well after reading this chicanery.

I had one such illogically awful encounter earlier this month when I received the following email in my inbox...

Email1

Of course, I was more than a little surprised and then annoyed at the premise of the email. (In this case, "annoyed" is a code word for "enraged").

  1. There is no mention of my name in this entire email (I am not totally sure if she sent this to the right person...)
  2. There is value statement (I can't figure out what really sets Melissa apart as being worth my time...)
  3. There is no call to action (I am kind of confused as to what logical action Melissa expects from me...)
  4. There is way too much content (I immediately start skimming because it "appears long and boring...)
  5. There is different color font in the email (I start wondering "why" and if there's a special reason...)

So I emailed Melissa back.  And yes, I was in a funk.  My time had been wasted.  My intelligence had been insulted.  I was upset with myself that I had even given Melissa time in my busy day.  I was irate and so I shared my thoughts:

Email2

I just asked Melissa why being "illogically awful" was a reason why I should care. And not to be outdone or undeterred she let me know.  She wasn't trying to woo me as a customer.  She was throwing data at me and hoping that I might be interested.

AWFUL!

Now you can gain access to thousands of developers.......

A truly "illogically awful" experience.  Melissa clearly did not want me as a customer.

A lot of sales books tell you that you qualify and don't take chances with customers -- that you do exactly what Melissa did:

  • That you refine your questions to only work with prospects who have money and time.... you get then give...
  • That you only build a relationship once you see that your prospect has something "in it" for you...  you prioritize based on immediate perceived value...
  • That you trade enough negotiable points and win a deal without taking any risks.... you never appear vulnerable or genuine...
  • That you explain all your moves logically in a "I always win" matrix... you need to appear important and in control...

But let's not belabor the illustration.  We can learn how to be "illogically helpful" by doing everything that Melissa failed to do.

  1. Be personal -- Start the email by calling me my name - my first name and leave off the "mister"....
  2. Be brief -- Keep it to 5 sentences max.  If you need to tell me more, don't...
  3. Be thorough -- Tell me something you know I don't know... and convince me you're bad-ass...
  4. Be creative -- Leave me wanting to hear the rest of your idea...
  5. Be different -- Remove any buzzwords and industry "gibberish" that make me tune you out...
  6. Be inspiring -- Combine what you want from me with what I care about.  I might actually get involved...
  7. Be important -- Leave me good contact details so I can return your call or email and add you to my address book...
  8. Be neat -- Proof read your email to make sure it is grammatically "mostly correct".  Bad punctuation is distracting...
  9. Be safe -- Don't go nuclear on a random idea until we have a relationship. (i.e. politics, religion, etc...)...
  10. Be vulnerable -- Admit it if you want help.  If you claim to have it figured out and don't I lose respect...
  11. Be About Me -- Rewrite your email if there are more I's and me's than you's.  You are writing to me so make it about me...

And here is the kicker: If you follow all the traditional sales rules (like Melissa did) you might never really ever lose a big deal.  You'll never be in a position to question whether you made the right decision.  You'll never have to take risks....

But you'll never have the illogic to support yourself landing big deals.