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It’s a hot day, you’re at the pool. Running around, jumping… splashing… laughing.
When someone yells CANNONBALL!
Everyone turns to look, as a wave of water comes right toward your face.
And you see another person in the air about to create another GIGANTIC splash as they land in the water.
Around the pool there are lots of different reactions:

  • The people who are comfortably dry in their beach chairs… are NOT amused
  • Children are laughing
  • The one lone person trying to swim laps is angry because they felt like they might drown
  • Some kids join in and begin cannonballing (is that even a verb?) themselves

There are things in sales that are like the cannonball – depending on who your target market is, they may be effective or NOT.

This week think about what in your world comes off like the splash covering the person swimming laps. Always remember that it is MORE about your prospects and customers than the cannonball activity itself: different audiences, different reactions.

Once you’ve come up with the sales activity that fell flat: think about a time it worked, went over well, and people actually joined in.

The final step is to determine the difference between the people – and how to determine which people you speak with fit into each category.

Need a cannonball example? Here is one from 2018: I was working with a salesperson whose customers work in oil fields running heavy equipment. I was asked how to respond to swearing. CANNONBALL!

My etiquette answer was:

  1. Only use language you are comfortable with.
  2. Never swear before the client does.
  3. Always choose words less harsh than they use.
  4. If there are multiple people in the room – make sure to go back to #1.

Have fun with your cannonballs – as long as they help you move forward!
Ps: you can go back to read the entire Sales Etiquette in the 2018 issue.

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