I’m on the way to a conference, nothing amazing about that. They have an app, I’ve followed the instructions and downloaded it.
In the past, I did my bit with events and conferences. Before the internet it was the only way you could research the market, as a salesperson it would be a good prospecting ground.
Of course, things have changed. Now as buyers we can avoid salespeople and go on-line and research companies as much as we want.
The days of the customer walking up to the stand and wanting to talk to a salesperson is the exception rather than the rule. Now we run through the Exhibition hall making sure we don’t make eye content with a salesperson.
With the reduction in footfall, Exhibition Organisers need to try other means of getting the people who have payed money to exhibit in front of punters.
(For those outside of the UK the word “punter” is slang for prospect / customer.)
Hence the conference App.
I’m flattered. All of a sudden I’m popular! The conference app let’s you connect with people who you find interesting. I’m not part of the Tinder generation, but I imagine its similar.
I doubt very much I would be this popular on Tinder.
I was amazed how many people want a meeting with me. But, hold on a minute, let’s read the profiles. I’m not going to have a meeting with ever good looking woman and man who swipes left (or is it right).
Profile 1 is very clearly a salesperson and they want to sell me something.
Sorry, no thanks, you know nothing about me, why do you think you want to sell me something.
Profile 2 another salesperson, don’t understand what they are even selling it’s written in business gobbledygook.
Sorry, no thanks, I’ve come for a day out at a conference, I don’t want to be sold to.
To cut a long story short, I’m not popular after all, it’s a bunch of sales people who want to sell me. Sorry, but no thanks.
So I just keep hitting the “skip” button. So much so that, when there is somebody that is vaguely interesting, I think, “sod it” I cannot be arsed and hit the skip button.
Now I’m not playing hard to get but why would I want to book a meeting with a salesperson to pitch to me? If I want to buy your product I would have searched for it online.
There are two morals to this tale
- Why do salespeople still insist on writing themselves up as …. well salespeople. As a buyer I’m looking for an expert, somebody who understands my business, the business issues, the industry. You know all these things so why do you have to play to type. Now the “red meat” sales people will snarl, throw a steak on the bar-b-que and say, “we are sales people and we feel less worth if we are not able to act our part”. Very true, you can do what you want, but I cannot be the only buyer who wants to be treated as a human being and not another piece of meat. Think of this as a secret sauce to crush your quota. And no you are not less a man.
- Do people still think that standing on a stand handing out brochures is how you sell in what is nearly the second decade of the 21st century. Oh I forget, this is digital as it’s on an app. I’m really sorry to break this to you but spamming me with meeting requests on a conference app is no different from standing on a stand handing out brochures.
There is a saying that “Marketers break everything” is the conference app another example of this? Why would I download an app, just for sales people to pitch to me?
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