COLUMBUS, Ohio, April 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- If you're in business-to-business (B-to-B) sales, getting your foot in the door of a prospect is your biggest challenge. Even more so is identifying and meeting with the actual decision-maker where you don't already have a connection or previous relationship.
Terry James knew this dilemma all too well. He's an account executive at Possitivity, which provides solutions in e-waste recycling and document management. Like most b-to-b sales professionals, James was struggling to meet with business prospects where he lacked connections.
"Just getting calls returned was difficult enough when I didn't know anyone," he says. "Then I discovered a different approach to getting my foot in the door: I used a wedge ... and it worked."
"The 'wedge' to which James refers is a metaphor for creating influence - thus opening doors - by delivering value up front," comments Keith Luscher, a sales professional, management consultant and author of the book Prospect & Flourish. He has been sharing this strategy with B-to-B sales professionals and job seekers for two years.
The strategy, aptly called WedgePower, helped James create immediate results. "I began to use it in my own B-to-B marketing efforts shortly after learning about it. Within the first 30 days I had landed two new major accounts I would not have gotten otherwise, with two more in the pipeline."
James continues to use WedgePower when he needs to open new doors, and it has increased his closure rate by 35 percent. This begs the question: how does a "wedge" help one get their foot in the door?
"WedgePower is a strategy of eight steps, all of which must work together for success," Luscher points out. "However," he adds, "up front, it forces us to ask a crucial question: why would a prospect want to have a 20-minute conversation with me?"
Answering this often-difficult question unlocks the key to one's value proposition, Luscher stresses. He also emphasizes that the value proposition is - contrary to popular opinion - not a reason to buy, but simply a reason for prospects to take an interest. This is the first step of WedgePower, with seven more to follow. A summary of the strategy can be found online at http://WedgePower.com. It is also outlined in vivid detail in a full report available for a limited time at a nominal charge (but is complimentary for those who are between jobs). Visitors are also invited to subscribe to The WedgePower Report at no charge.
Keith F. Luscher is author of Prospect & Flourish (http://www.ProspectandFlourish.com) and Don't Wait Until You Graduate II (http://www.DontWaitUntilYouGraduate.com). He frequently advises colleagues on marketing and prospecting, and has ghost-written ground-breaking educational curriculum for the insurance industry. He can be reached via LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/in/keithluscher), as well as through his own website at http://KeithLuscher.com, which offers more than 100 feature articles.
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SOURCE Keith F. Luscher