When You’re the New Kid in Town


When you find yourself in a new company or a new sales territory, the first thing you have to do is build rapport.  Make sure people know who you are and what you specialize in.

When You're the New Kid in Town

There are several ways to do this:

1) If you have a record of doing things in neighboring jurisdictions and communities, those should be some of the first things you mention to potential allies and customers.  This is more straightforward if you already have your foot in the door (e.g., transferring to a different branch or a similar company).

2) If you’re a total fish out of water, you might consider reaching out to your local Chambers of Commerce and getting names of local businesses to contact.  As usual, your best bet is a search that’s specific to your industry and segment.

Let’s say you’d like to leverage your past successes helping call centers.  Once you’ve obtained the right contact information, you might call and say: 

“Hello, John.  My name is [first name] with [company]. Our office is actually right down the street from yours. We’ve had the pleasure of providing [your service] to no less than a dozen call centers within 25 miles of your ABC location.  If you’d like, I could share with you what we’ve done at those other sites with an eye toward duplicating that success for your center.  I bet you’d find our insights to be very useful, regardless of whether we eventually decide to work together.” 

Assuming they opt to continue the conversation, feel free to volunteer a success story that’s likely to resonate with them, and perhaps even suggest how they might be your next case study.  This could be the thin edge of a wedge to break into a new territory, as opposed to just calling every Tom, Dick, and Harry with nothing special to say! 

3) Another option is to team with your local Chambers of Commerce.  After all, what are they trying to do?  Their goal is making their members more competitive and profitable, building the community, and spurring economic development in the process.  You could approach them and say: 

"Hello, John.  My name is [ ] and I work for [company name].  We are a mechanical service contractor in the process of expanding into your territory. For the last three years, we’ve been servicing more than two dozen large building in towns north and south of you... helping them make their operations healthier and more profitable. Given the increased level of interest we’ve seen among building owners and managers in the area of safely reopening buildings after lock-downs, I’d like to explore the possibility of presenting an educational workshop for your members.  The working title is, ‘Leveraging Energy Projects to Make Your Business More Competitive, Profitable, Valuable and SAFE.’ Our presentation would be absolutely non-commercial. The goal would be to give your members actionable success tips they could start applying immediately.”

4) Another great tactic is to approach a local newspaper or business journal with an offer to provide content. You could be a guest contributor and provide content that would be non-commercial and genuinely helpful to building owners and operators.  Believe me, if you share useful content, plenty of promising prospects will reach out to you thanks to the “About the Author” blurb at the end of the piece.  And remember, you don’t even need prospects to be that proactive.  Once the piece is published, reprints featuring the publication’s masthead become valuable tools to open doors.

Delivering these sorts of well-planned messages to specific audiences like these will be much more effective than simply dialing down a list of random businesses.


Read more blogs on Sales Professionalism, Sales, Sales Process, Sales Success, Recession Selling

Posted by Mark Jewell

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