Lasting first impressions…and he still remembers my sales presentation

A slight problem with on-line credit card authorization, and the next thing you know, I’m talking one-on-one with the co-owner of a $20+ million dollar company, which is coming onboard with Catalogs.com. And he remembers me …

Yes, way back, when we launched Catalogs.com, of course … I was in sales. Let’s face it, as an entrepreneur, I held many titles: Accounting Supervisor, Operations Specialist, Director of Waste Management, Human Resources Director, Chief Cook & Bottle Washer, Marketing Director, Contract Negotiations, Business Development Manager (and it was just 2 of us in the company!)

Now, we really have many of these positions, but when I pitched Jonathan 6 years ago (and as my current Senior Account Executive pointed out to me) I never closed Jonathan. When we spoke yesterday, he remembered me. Was it my charm, my beauty (I doubt it- it was only a telephone call), was it my follow-through? Did he remember me because of my personality?

Who knows, but at the time, Catalogs.com only represented clients that physically have printed, mailable catalogs. In other words, back then; we weren’t flexible, nor meeting the needs of ALL our potential clients. So I said “goodbye” to Jonathan and never got the deal. Now, our website represents over 80% of clients who have print catalogs, but we also service on-line shopping sites as well. Thus, Jonathan is now happy!

Take note entrepreneurs and executives … when potential clients tell you “No thanks, I’m not interested,” the most important lesson you can learn are to find out why.

What service are you specifically looking for?
What product feature is not meeting your expectations?
What was it about the pricing that didn’t make sense?
What other services do you find more valuable that we are not offering?
Is there a better time to join our program?
How could our marketing program change to fit your needs?
What specifically, are you looking for in a marketing program?
Is there anything component of our program that you would like me to explain again?

We waited (and wasted) six years before getting back to Jonathan. We could all learn our lessons from this true story.


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