November 15, 2015

Just Say No

We all have experienced the prospect who continues to tell us that they are “just not ready” to purchase whatever we offer. They may say that they need to gather the funds necessary to make the purchase, or they may tell us that they are too busy to make the decision “at this moment”. It is the end of the year; it’s the start of the holidays; it is their busy season; it’s “not a good time right now”. These are all excuses that we hear.

What is the prospect really telling us? Are they actually that poor at controlling their business or personal lives? Are they serious about our product or service and adding it to their life? What do they really mean to say to us? Is their real message that they will never purchase from us and they just cannot bring themselves to declare that fact?

We cannot move every prospect whom we meet to the status of customer or client. It just will never happen. Perhaps there is a financial status that our offering requires that our prospect will never gain in order to have the funds to buy from us. Perhaps our offering requires a level of discipline to implement or utilize that the prospect cannot adapt. Maybe they just do not want to do business with us personally.

Whatever the reason, we will never be able to add this prospect to our customer list. It will never happen, no matter how much we hope, dream, or envision. We have been taught that we should never say never. For us personally, there are prospects that we will never, ever be able to secure as customers, and we must realize this fact before we waste any further time and effort on these prospects.

“Sacrilege”, we say. How can we afford to give up on any prospect before successfully bringing them into our family of customers? Go for it; pursue them to the ends of the earth, crossing the line from marketing and follow-up to the level of stalking. We must realize that it just isn’t going to happen. Otherwise we will become frustrated and ignore the other prospects to whom we can market and then be rewarded for our efforts.

We should leave the door open, not insulting these prospects, but they should no longer be the main object of our efforts. Stay in touch with them through subtle marketing and let them know that we are still here, still available to them as networking partners. Perhaps a birthday greeting or maybe a reminder of a meeting that would be of common interest would be appropriate. Maybe one day they will see the light.

We must be adults here and not threaten our prospects. We must make them comfortable enough with our partnership that they can just say “no” to us and let us stop trying to gain their business. We must make them referral sources because they know what and who we are, like us for our methods and approach, and trust us to do the right thing, always. It is not the end of the world; it should be another moment among friends.

Gratitude Marketing means that we value others as partners and nurture those relationships that bring great karma to both parties. It does not mean bitter, all or nothing, relationships. It means that we can hear “no” from others and not become hostile. It also means that we can foster environments where our partners are comfortable saying “no” if they wish, and we can if we wish.

Please leave me your comments, or email me at, or call me at 360-314-8691. A “no” today may mean a “yes” from somewhere else tomorrow.

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