Monday, September 23, 2013

When persistence doesn't pay

A high ranking friend at a hospital sent me this thread of emails:

First the unsolicited invitation to a sales conference:

Space is limited and last year's events were packed so register to save your seat now.

My friend responds with an email with "pls delete me from your e-mail list" in the subject line.

He replies:

We work with a number of healthcare and assisted living companies today. We've been able to demonstrate huge returns for them in the millions by improving on internal processes, greater efficiencies, and driving overall OPEX down.

Given the blueprint of [hospital name], your vertical, employee headcount (3,000) and revenues ($280m+) I would predict you have approximately $70m in addressable spend per year that you and your team is trying to manage. Because of our model, user adoption rates and the ability to control all of this spend by 90% I would anticipate being able to save [hospital name] $150k per month.

I will be more than happy to take you off our email list. With your permission and based on your thoughts given the information I've shared with you today I would welcome a call to discuss how I cam (sic) up with this 15 minute analysis. I believe with your candid feedback and more accurate numbers the number I shared with you would be greater. 

She responds:

Do others find this an effective sales approach?  I asked you to take me off your list and you then write me back trying to still sell me services.  If I wanted to talk to you, I would not have asked you to take me off your e-mail list.

He replies:

I've taken you off any future email campaigns from Marketing, apologies. I sent you a personal email as I'm simply doing my job here.

Most employees I speak with that are tasked with improving operations with tools that drive down costs, improve efficiencies, and provide greater visibility into the organization typically welcome a discussion to learn more.

2 comments:

Dave Chase said...

Dealing with a sales person like that, I would assume that the standards of that company are unacceptably low. Further, they obviously aren't good at taking feedback and listening. Especially with the 3rd email, I'd feel obligated to tell as many co-workers and industry colleagues to steer clear of that company. Hardly the result a smart sales person would want.

Daniel Wilson said...

I guess I'm not entirely sure I agree. While the response is far to verbose, making an effort to demonstrate more personalized value before severing all times seems valid. By simply removing from the email list you gain nothing, its not as though you'll be recalled in the future as "the nice guy who removed me from a spam list". By replying I suspect the sales person has a better than 0% chance of making a sale or at least gaining new feedback to perfect his approach.

All this is of course moot now that the exchange has been shared widely and this guy made into a schmuck.