Given that I have to prospect, that is, to identify potential clients, how do I go about it?
All the usual stuff: specify criteria, search for those organizations (on the web, in hard-copy directories, by networking and so on) and once I have identified them, establish contact to build a relationship (telephone, mail, email or whatever), and so it goes.
I was told today to spend 70% of my time prospecting, that from every 100 contacts, 10 might respond, and 1 might lead to a sale; quantities may vary.
But 70% of what time?
I need one day a week, really I do, to go canoeing or to clean the kitchen floor. Or take books back to the library. Also laundry.
At best that leaves six days.
I ought to read in bed or sleep for seven hours, and making breakfast etc occupies at least another three hours. I have to live!
At best I have six 14-hour days to hand, but let us not kid ourselves – there's always the phone call from Bill or Norma, or solving a simple problem drags out to 45 minutes because at the other end they still don't know their way around Office 2007.
Bottom line, when I nut it all out, even using my automated web tools to glean 2 or 3 contacts from 250+ news items on Canada News Wire, I'd be lucky right now to churn out ONE well-built letter per day. By the time I've chosen the candidate, searched the web for more information, created the contact record, decided my primary product for a point-of-entry, drafted the letter, revised it etc, I'll get one prospect a day.
Perhaps when I've been doing it for a couple of months I'll get two a day.
In the meantime I'd do well to remember that each day has but 24 hours, and some are needed for eating, sleeping, and a 30-minute walk.
"70% of my time" starts to sound more like "5 hours".