Recent Articles

BD 101: How to Prevent and Navigate Prospects From Going Cold – Part 1

by Scott

Anyone in business development or sales has probably had someone go cold on them. Everything seems to be going well than the person on the other side stops responding to your emails or calls.

Why This Happens

Each situation is unique, but I think it all comes back to the same underlying reason: people avoid confrontation. They don’t want to deal with the pressure of saying no or being sold, especially when they’re not buying.

Saying no or even not right now is harder than saying yes or not responding at all. It’s just easier to ignore someone than to tell them that their offering isn’t a priority right now.

Preventing Radio Silence

As a BD/sales person, I love when people are transparent with me. …
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Good BD At An Early Stage Startup

by Scott

How do you if know a business development person is “good” at an early stage startup?

I think one mark of a great BD person is that they’re able to get that initial deal with a meaningful party. Generally speaking, they’re able to convince someone worthwhile to take a chance on them.

If I’m a successful company why should they take a meeting with a lowly startup? Why should I trust you can execute what you say you can? Why should I potentially risk time, energy, and resources on something that’s largely unproven?

A great BD person can answer all these questions. But it takes much more than answers to get these type of deals done. It takes a meaningful relationship to get …
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Thinking About Self Improvement Over A Lifetime

by Scott

Self-improvement emcompasses goals. Goals do not encompass self improvement. The distinction is that goals are finite. Self improvement never ends. There is no finish line. Whether I’m trying to have less body fat, get better at my job, or develop a greater tolerance for fear the same notion holds true – it will always be a work in progress; a climb to reach a higher personal altitude void of any finish line. Goals simply serve as landmarks to aid us in our climb.

Within this framework, I believe self-improvement means striving to create a new normal; one that is just a bit closer to our aspirational selves.

This thought came to me in the gym last week. I was frustrated because I …
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BD 101: What to Avoid While Getting that First Meeting

by Scott

“Before we hop on a call, mind sending over a deck or one-pager my team can review”

I get this all the time. Target partners and customers often want collateral on your offering prior to taking a meeting with you. It’s a filtering mechanism they use to spend their time efficiently.

I avoid sending material prior to a first meeting at all costs. Here’s why:

The person on the other side is going to look at what you send them and immediately draw conclusions about what your company does. From here they’ll quickly determine whether they’re interested in taking that meeting. If they are, awesome…proceed as usual. But if they’re not, odds are you’ve lost the deal and this person will magically become …
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BD 101: What Doctors Can Teach Us About Pitching

by Scott

The first thing a Dr. says when you step into his office usually goes a little something like this:

“So tell me what’s a matter?”

Only after you answer this question can the Dr. treat you.

 

But what if he didn’t ask this question? Say you injured your ankle playing hoops. After three days of trying to tough it out, you head to Dr.’s office for treatment. When you finally get a chance to see the doc, he just starts putting your arm in a sling?…he tries to fix a problem you don’t have.

Business development and sales people make this same mistake all the time. I know I have.

You finally get that meeting. All you want to do is tell them how awesome …
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BD: Identifying and Partnering with Arms Dealers

by Scott

In business development or sales, the biggest fish in your prospect pond are often what I like to call “arms dealers.” Arms dealers provide a related product or service to a group of fragmented targets. By selling to or partnering with an arms dealer, you can reach this group of targets in one fell swoop versus approaching individually. Hence, it’s typically far more efficient doing business with an arms dealer.

 

An Example of Partnering with an Arms Dealer:

Say my company provides a commenting platform for professional bloggers. One approach is to go to every major blogger on a popular platform and try to convince them why they should utilize my solution. This would require many instances of repetitive labor. Alternatively, I …
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What 100 Posts Has Taught Me About Blogging: Part 3

by Scott

This is the third and final post on things I’ve learned about blogging over the course of 100 posts. Parts one and two focus on continuity and the process. In this post, I want to highlight a few things I’ve learned about content and audiences.

Creating a Destination is Tough

The greatest challenge for anyone looking to cultivate a vibrant content destination is that you’re only as good as the last piece of content you put out. When I first started blogging, I thought that a viral post was all it took to be off to the races. That’s far from the truth. Sure people might venture to your blog that one instance, but that doesn’t mean they’ll ever come back or …
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