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Value Added: Has Anyone Heard of You?


Do you feel undervalued by your organisation or clients? In this new series Brian Griffin explores how a little sales savvy can boost your career.

Roughly, what percentage of your prospective clients is aware of you, and what you do? And when I say “aware of”, I mean how many of them could bring your name to mind when asked? Now, unless you’ve been brutally honest, the likelihood is that you’ve overestimated by a factor of four or five, at a minimum!

Yes, I know that you probably have written to them enclosing your brochure, so they certainly should know of you. But look at these rather sobering figures:
A typical decision-maker in a small/medium-sized business will receive up to 100 pieces of direct mail per week. How much of this does the recipient actually give time to, and how much is simply shot in the bin? Let’s have a look at some numbers. Say a decision-make receives 60 pieces per week. Well, about 50% is immediately thrown away by the decision -maker's spouse or secretary. So we’re now down to 30 pieces. Another 50% is binned by the decision-maker without even opening it. That leaves us with 15 pieces. Of these, about 66% are thrown away after no more than eight seconds’ reading time. Therefore, out of a total of 60 pieces per week, only about five are placed in the decision-maker’s “must look more closely at this” file. And the figures are far worse for e-mails! So how confident are you now, that your Prospects are aware of you?

We say that to get the attention of a donkey, you must first hit him over the head with a piece of 4x2 – he is now looking at you! So, what do you use as a piece of 4x2?

About the author: Since the late 1980's Brian Griffin has focussed exclusively on helping training companies, consultants, trainers and others to better market and sell their professional services.He is a Chartered Marketer, a Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development; a Fellow of the Institute of Sales & Marketing Management and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. He writes regular columns for a variety of media and is frequently guest speaker at conferences and seminars. For more information on go to

Related article: Value Added: The Soft Sell.


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