3 Barriers to Connecting with Prospects

In today’s world of banking and insurance, it is increasingly more difficult to get the attention of a prospective buyer after only a few outreach attempts. We are all busier than ever before with multi-media coming from every direction. So, how do you stay consistent (and persistent) in your outreach with a prospect while remaining sensitive to their daily lives and the distractions they face?

It has always been a difficult task for advisors to be able to reach the prospects they call and email each day. They call…and they email…and they keep following up, wondering if anybody will ever do one of two things:

  1. Answer the phone.
  2. Return a voicemail/reply to an email.

While certainly not a new development in selling, engaging with prospects has become increasingly and dramatically more difficult. If we go back to 2009, it took around 8-10 outreaches on average to engage with a prospect. In today’s world, that number had risen to 16-18 attempts. Keep in mind that these are averages. Sometimes it takes even more attempts to get the prospect to pay attention to you.

Here are the 3 Barries to Connecting with Prospects in 2024:

Why has the number of outreaches required more than doubled in the last decade? There are three main reasons:

  1. Distraction: Prospects are busier than ever before and are constantly battling the numerous distractions that come their way. Their mobile device buzzes and they have to look. The email notification on their phone or computer sounds and they can’t resist. Some have estimated that the typical person picks up and puts down their mobile device between more than 100 times each day.
  1. Competition: There is more of it than ever before and it’s fiercer than ever before! In financial services, competition from other financial institutions is only a small portion of the battle. With online companies and non-traditional providers, competition can be, and is, literally any company.
  1. Commodity: Unfortunately, in some industries including banking and insurance, the prospect believes that the vendor calling them and the vendor they currently use are essentially the same. The prospect just doesn’t see any meaningful difference. To them, a bank is a bank. An insurance broker is an insurance broker. A technology provider is a technology provider.

Of these three reasons, #3 is the most concerning (or it should be). And here’s why… If you don’t differentiate yourself from your competition by providing value, your prospect will do the differentiating for you. But they won’t use a measuring stick of value. They will more often than not use a measuring stick of price.

Here is another sobering statistic about the world of modern-day selling. While the average number of needed attempts has increased to at least 18, most salespeople quit after less than 5 attempts. Maybe they think the prospect is being rude by not replying. Maybe they think that, “in the good old days,” people used to return calls. Regardless, the world has changed. Advisors in banking and insurance must be very proficient at breaking through these three barriers, standing out from all the other bankers, and be memorable.

From Mark Trinkle, Chief Growth Officer
Anthony Cole Training Group


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