“Cut and Paste” and “Find / Replace” the fine art of loosing your client!!
The situation: Late on the afternoon before you have to submit your proposal, report or document, you realise that it has not been done. Click on search (or if you have indexed your pc with Google double hit of ctrl key) bring up last proposal which “closely resembles” your client.Hit “Find/Replace” function type in find area, type in replacement value in “replace” hit enter – “32 instances changed”. Quick check to see that the reading still make sense. Go to the recipient’s web page pull down low res logo from the web site, delete previous recipient’s logo and replace with new recipients logo.
Add prepared by Joe Public of Joe Public Corp (actually you should be giving Bill – you know the guy from Microsoft some credit here). Print on colour printer and bind (adding acetate cover) or make PDF.
Prepare covering letter print on colour printer, but the documents together.
The same applies with Powerpoint presentations, just leave out the paper requirement or print them and hand those out anyway.
Presto personalised presentation!!!
WRONG – what you have is a generic document with someone’s name.
Companies are increasingly falling into this trap when it comes to selling themselves. They are loosing the art of effective presentation, engaging with their clients to truly understand what they require.
To truly differentiate yourselves from the competition, you need to do the requisite research, you need to build your relationship with your client. The problem highlighted by last minute presentation documents is the fact that you were unaware that the client was actually in the market. If the correct relationship had been formulated in the beginning you would have know that your client was looking.
You would have been at a distinct advantage in that you would have formulated the requirement with your client, thereby cutting out the opposition.
Effective business relies on effective relationship and communication. There is no excuse for a generic offering, even supermakets understand this, why do you think they offer your 15 versions of baked beans!
Deliver yourselves from the cut and paste evil, and work on your client relationship to ensure that you maximise your selling effort.
An effective sales effort is marked by personal contact from all levels of your organisation, relationships must be created at every level of your client contact.