SALES MESSAGE REWRITE
Half the challenge of writing sales messages is reducing them into plain, simple sentences. For some reason, when people start "writing" they think they need to get all "high-fallutin'." Nothing could be further from the truth. Here's an example:
Opening statement: "I help biomedical companies identify and hire proven talent, resulting in a better qualified candidate pool to choose from, which accelerates the hiring process and shorten the time-to-profitability/productivity."
Differentiator: (Used if the prospect asks "how do you do that?") "Since I come from the medical device industry, I've developed a proprietary database of passive candidates with extensive industry experience who work exclusively with me. We’re able to 'surgically remove' these proven performers from competitive or similar organizations, something that in-house recruiters cannot do."
Conversation starter: "Enough about me, how does your organization handle its recruiting challenges?"
Ask for a meeting: "If we really could identify talent for your hard-to-find positions faster, with a larger pool of qualified candidates, what would your thoughts be on having an initial conversation with me to hear more?"
The message above follows the rules I lay out in my book Business to Business Selling: Power Words and Strategies from the World’s Top Sales Experts. However, it uses a flood of words to communicate what can more easily be said with a few.
Here's a rewrite:
Opening: "I help biomedical companies identify and hire proven talent."
Note: This is sufficient because presumably anybody who's interested would know all the reasons why proven talent is important. As a general rule, it's a bad idea to tell people stuff they already know.
Differentiator: "I developed a lot of high-level contacts while working in the medical device industry." Note: This is better than the original because it avoids odd terminology like "passive candidates" and "surgically remove." Also, prospects for this service know what inhouse recruiters can and cannot do, so there's no reason to tell them.
Conversation starter: "Are you having any problems finding qualified people?" Note: This is straightforward and avoids the "enough about me," which frankly sounds a bit conceited.
Ask for a meeting: "When's a good time to meet?" Note: The original once again states what the person already knows.
So here's the rewritten message would work in a practical "elevator pitch" situation:
- Prospect: So, what do you do for a living?
- You: I help biomedical companies identify and hire proven talent.
- Prospect: Really? How do you do that?
- You: I've developed a lot of high-level contacts while working in the medical device industry."
- Prospect (clearly interested): That sounds useful.
- You: Are you having any problems finding qualified people?
- Prospect: Yes, in fact it's an ongoing challenge.
- You: When's a good time to meet?
In short, don't make your message more complex than it needs to be. The simpler, the better.