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Too many choices = bad

How you sell isn’t as relevant as the compelling story you tell while you do it.

One of the biggest problems I see with selling services is we tend to be too “me” focused.

“Here’s why I’m the best…”

“We solved that exact problem for a client once…”

“We focus on 14 primary service lines…”

It’s this last one that’s especially troublesome. Now I’ve written about the problems inherent in including too many choices in proposals, but this time I want to talk about too many choices in your initial outreach.

If you’re doing any outbound selling at all, you’ve probably made this error. Let’s call it the Throwing Spaghetti Strategy. As in, we’ll throw a heap of spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks.

As is often the case with strategy, not much sticks at all.

It was brought to my attention through a voicemail – thanks to reader and friend Josh Brammer for sending this along.

Here’s a transcript of the voicemail, complete with a blooper reel at the very end when the rep should’ve hung up quicker:

There are all kinds of problems with this voicemail – it’s too long, it’s “me” focused, it lacks context, and more – but let’s look at the number of offers made.

In a whopping 100-second voicemail, Mike offered:

  • A database with 300 million opted in emails
  • B2B or B2C optins
  • Postal addresses and mailings
  • Geofencing and modeling
  • Email database (a second time)

Holy crap that’s a lot! What’s perhaps most amazing is that Mike managed to make all of those offers with absolutely no value proposition or relevant context.

His script is crap, if he even has one.

And he spent zero time doing any homework on Josh prior to making this call.

This script – if we can be so generous as to call it that – is so unorganized that it raises more questions than it answers. Now you may say “wait, that’s a good thing because it’ll lead to a conversation.” Probably not – no one likes to be confused.

So here’s my advice: be sure you and your people know your sales story, and always couch your offers in a value prop that’s relevant to your clients.