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Breaking Up is Hard to Do

I’ve been in sales for about 20 years now and like anyone in sales or leadership in a company, I’ve been told that the client/vendor relationship “is over.”  With that message, I have been given a myriad of reasons or excuses as to why the relationship was over with my company and my soon to be an ex-client ranging from understandable to totally unique, here are some of the better ones.

  • “Our budget has been slashed”
  • “A competitor is giving us better pricing”
  • “My wife’s brother is now doing what you do, and well you know, I’m stuck”
  • “We’ve been purchased and the new parent company has a different vendor in place”

These reasons are always a huge let down, but you are able to somehow rationalize them, or at least wrap your head around the process that went into them for the most part. The tough ones are when the excuse makes no sense at all, or is so surprising that you really have no response such as:

  • “We’ve decided to go a different direction”
  • “We don’t believe in customer education anymore”
  • “We think that marketing is not helping our market share grow”
  • “Your boss offended our CEO’s wife when he thought she was his mother instead of his wife”

But recently, I got one that really tops them all. It so far surpasses the others that I have heard that it merits sharing.  A recent DCIG customer that was using our new Lead Generation product, for less than a month, called to tell us the following; “We just finished closing the 3rd piece of business as a result of your Lead Gen program, but we are cancelling the engagement because we don’t think that it works very well.
I had to check my calendar to make sure that it was not April 1st.  I was dumbfounded, speechless.  I just could not find words to describe what I had just been told.  Our services had uncovered new leads for these folks, created new selling opportunities for them, and led to 3 new deals worth tens of thousands of dollars of sales, and they were telling us that they did not think it worked very well.
Our monthly program cost was a mere fraction of the cost of one sale, and yet this program apparently did not create any value in this client’s eye.  The more humorous thing was that they were using cooperative marketing dollars from a manufacturer to fund this, so in the end, it was not costing them a dime!
Now, if I had a sales person come to me and say “Boss, those leads you got me have led to 3 new sales!” I would expect the next words from their mouth to be “GET ME MORE” or “THIS IS FANTASTIC“, or “PINCH ME PLEASE I’VE NEVER HAD IT THIS GOOD BEFORE!“.  But if they came to me telling me that as a result of less than a month of effort that they have closed 3 new pieces of business and that it was their austere professional opinion that this program sucked and they want to discontinue it, I would FIRE THEM RIGHT THERE!
I am just baffled by the rationale of this customer, because our service admittedly uncovered NEW leads, people that they had never spoken to, heard of, or were engaged in a sales process before we made the introduction through our Lead Gen service. On top of uncovering NEW leads, we gave them leads that were people looking to make a buying decision….right away! AND BOUGHT FROM OUR CUSTOMER!
Now if you are not in sales, you may not fully appreciate the enormity of this. Finding people who want to buy right away is like finding a herd of talking unicorns milling around your back yard, looking for the opportunity to join a traveling side show.  It is rare, but….clearly the service is inadequate, and should be cancelled.
We at DCIG strive to create high quality content, and now we strive to also create high quality leads through utilizing our content as a service.  We would love to talk to you about providing this same service to you and hopefully create the same level of new opportunity for your that we did for our soon to be ex-client.


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