Do you struggle with prospecting and lead generation? Is getting a meeting with a potential customer like pulling teeth? Cory Bray believes the struggle is often because you aren’t giving your prospecting a compelling offer. No one is going to be enticed by a sales meeting. A sales meeting may even be a deterrent. What does Cory recommend doing instead? He shares advice, strategies, and tactics to navigate the process in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Don’t miss it!
Cory Bray is the Managing Director at ClozeLoop. Cory has built high-performing sales teams in industries that range from manufacturing to technology. He knows what works in practice, not just in theory. He’s a high-value advisor to multiple accelerators, bestselling author of 6 books, and a dynamic keynote speaker who has spoken all over the world. He’s passionate about making sales accessible, actionable, and scalable with Fast Frameworks.
Cory notes that you need to achieve the right amount of volume with the least amount of effort. Effort can be measured by human time and the amount of capital deployed. If you have spikes in leads, it can be overwhelming to your team. So you need consistent lead volume over time so the organization can handle it.
Cory sees prospecting as human-assisted marketing. It’s targeted. With any good effort, you’re offering someone something a prospect can accept or reject. But most salespeople make a mistake when prospecting. They’re offering a sales meeting—which isn’t compelling at all. When Cory is prospecting, he offers them one of his books. It’s compelling and something of actual value. It's a touch that gets them into the funnel. The bottom line? Offer people something that they actually want.
The expected value in a casino is negative—unless you’re the house. But when you’re in a casino, you’ll win hands at a Blackjack table, spins at a slot machine, or rolls at a craps table. Casinos do that to keep you in the game. Cory shares “Unfortunately, when you’re making cold calls or you’re sending a lot of prospecting emails, you don’t have that luxury of having those intermittent wins designed to keep you around. So you have to create them for yourself.”
How do you do that? A great tactic is to set negative goals—which sounds counter-intuitive. If you’re supposed to make 75 calls a day, make your goal to get 74 “nos” a day. Along the way to that goal, you may just get a yes. You focus on the negative goals so when the positive one comes, it’s a bonus.
Cory emphasizes that salespeople have to be able to handle rejection and bounce back from every “no.” Salespeople often aren’t liked. Cory had someone tell him once, “I already have a mother, I don’t need anyone else to think I’m the greatest person in the world.” Some people aren’t naturally great at rejection—but you can learn to handle it.
Cory believes that you need to develop the ability to have a good conversation with a stranger about a topic that they’re more of an expert at than you are. So many salespeople get overwhelmed with the idea of needing to be a subject matter expert in everything. Cory emphasizes that shouldn’t be your goal or even a concern.
Whoever you’re calling will have more subject matter expertise than you will. It’s not a competition. Instead, Cory recommends becoming an expert at having conversations around topics you’re NOT comfortable with. Can you navigate a conversation without feeling like you’re under a ton of pressure? What other skills should you develop? What are Cory’s top 3 prospecting and lead generation dos and don’ts? Listen to hear Cory’s thoughts.
The first big deal Cory closed started with a solid “no.” But after the meeting, Cory came up with another idea. So he created a 4-minute video for the Senior VP. When he contacted the VP he said, “It sounds like there’s not a great opportunity for us to work together based on our last conversation. Here are 4 minutes to review another idea that I had.”
His response? “This is really interesting—let’s meet.” That’s how Cory closed the biggest deal his company had ever made. He learned that you must be resilient and don’t take no as the end of the sales process. No might just be a roadblock or an invitation for further conversation.
When you get a “no”, put them in your long-term nurture pipeline. Don’t lose sight of them. You can figure out how to use them as an asset in the future. To hear the rest of Cory’s prospecting and lead generation wisdom—listen to the whole episode!
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