Carl Landau famously (or infamously) offered to send “cats in the mail” to his advertising clients. I’m known for sending burritos to get calls back.
A new friend of mine, Lee Hancock, a Business Development Executive with Proxios, has really taken it to the next level—by using custom artwork to get through to the C-suite and get the meeting.
Lee says he reads about one business book a month. He picked up a copy of “How to Get a Meeting with Anyone: The Untapped Selling Power of Contact Marketing” by Stu Heinecke.
Then Lee developed a plan:
Here’s an example: One prospect works in trucking litigation and defense. So the artwork included a truck with the law firm’s logo on the side. The contact’s name was on the cab. Lee also worked in subtle nods to where the prospect went to college, (since he’d done his research.) He had the artwork created on a canvas, ready to hang on the prospect’s office wall, and placed a copy of the art in the mail with an introductory letter.
Lee was sure this approach would work.
His CEO, to his credit, gave him the latitude to try it. But he was so sure it wouldn’t work, he placed a bet that Lee’s campaign would not get a single reply. When Lee called the prospect to follow-up, the receptionist said “Hold on, he really wants to speak with you.” The prospect took the call and wanted to thank him for such awesome outreach.
The CEO was happy to have lost the bet.
After that, another of Lee’s target prospects said, “I don’t even know what you are selling – I want to meet with you anyway.” Lee has repeated his success several times now. So far only one company failed to respond. Otherwise, everyone has at least taken his call – most agreed to a meeting.
Most of us have access to art departments – either in-house or via contracts. Why not reach out to your friends on the creative side of publishing and see if you, too, can’t create custom art to get your top prospect’s attention?
P.S. If you’d like to hear the story in Lee’s own words, you can listen to a podcast interview with him and his CEO here:
More about Christopher: Christopher Ware is Vice President of Business Development for NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association. He’s an association event pro with expertise in making niche events profitable through creative corporate sponsorships that benefit both the association and the industry it serves. Inspired by Carl’s giving away cats, Chris has a history of giving away free burritos to get his calls returned.
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