I was in Montana last week on vacation and was lucky to be able to fly fish for a few days. Of course, while out fishing on the Gallatin river, I had my son take pictures of me so I could post them on Facebook and Instagram and let my friends know what I was up to.
As you can see from the picture, the photo shows me standing in tall grass, smiling, and holding my fly rod. Of course, later in the day, when I posted this image and wrote, “Lucas and I, caught zero fish,” I got some snide comments back from friends. They said, “water is required” and “find water.” Implying that my inability to catch any fish stemmed from the fact that I was not near the river.
And later that evening, while reviewing these comments, I got thinking about what a good analogy fishing is to startup sales and especially early efforts. The point being, you cannot generate sales or learn what customers want until you engage. Or, in this case, find the water and toss your line into it.
Many startup founders are like me in the picture. Standing in tall grass, holding their fishing rods, looking around, and thinking they are fishermen. But, they are not.
Startup sales, like fishing, is an action-based activity. You are not selling until you find a river of prospects and fish them for opportunity. Once you’re in that river and casting your line, you’re selling. You may not be a good salesperson, but you are selling and have increased your odds of snagging a customer by 100 percent. And it is the first step to becoming a better salesperson.
You can’t sell anything until you find your river of prospects and cast your line into them. So, don’t wait. Get out, wade into the river and cast. The sooner you do this the sooner you’ll have success.
Written by Tim Bates
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