You know, to read some news, download a free study, ask for a media kit, start a debate, what we marketing people do: draw attention to ourselves and our products.
This kind of interaction has happened with people from various countries in Europe, giving me the occasion to learn about certain specificities and the local business culture. But I was particularly impressed by the consultative selling skills of professionals in the UK.
First of all, these people are very good at discovering potential clients and opportunities: they are very connected to the international business environment, they stay informed, engage in professional networks and track any prospect, often to its surprise, as it was my case. Secondly, they are very perseverant towards their initial purpose, which is contacting you directly by phone and persuade you to get on board of their ideas, services, events, publications.
Every further step is done by the book, each sentence starts with your name, you are asked to approve every two statements, they ask the right questions so as to unveil your needs, use all the right keywords, keep it short and clear, and they steer indivertibly towards the final question "when can I call and have your decision?". They decide the next steps and make you agree on those too.
I kinda got used to the high quality approach used by UK consultants, but today it got even better. Following an over-the-phone proposal to publish some material in a specialized publication 3 days ago, plus all the e-materials sent to me via email, today I received by post some copies of the respective publication, plus a hand-written note.