He’s Just Not That Into You

Tell me if this sounds familiar: you meet someone at an event who strikes you as a great potential customer or partner. You raise the notion of working together, and have a great chat. You both seem excited by the potential deal in the offing, and you part ways with every intention of following up again. You email the next day, and then…nothing. You follow-up again: nothing. And again, and again, and again: nothing.

I’m sorry, but he’s just not that into you.

But why? What causes someone to decide not to respond?

In my Getting In The Door series I took a look at some of the tactical steps you can take to reopen the lines of communication when the trail goes cold. But what actually causes those situations in the first place?

Ultimately, it comes down to one simple thing: They don’t see the value you can offer to them.

Think about the last conversation you had with someone who never responded: Were his eyes darting across the room? Were his words filled with “uh huhs” and “right” and other cues to get to the point already? Did they avoid asking any questions?

Despite how obvious the value that you have to offer them is to you, they probably think you’re just wasting their time. Our natural desire to be liked causes us to extend those polite social cues even when all you want to do is run for the exit. That puts the onus on you to look past the polite nodding and ask yourself a tough question: did you really show them see why they should care?

That means thinking about how you can appeal to both the Individual Mind and the Organizational Mind.

  • The Individual Mind asks what’s in it for me personally? What could get him excited about working with you? The chance for recognition, the financial windfall of a bonus, an opportunity to work on something he’s truly passionate about?

The Organizational Mind asks why would the company prioritize this? What about your Value Hypothesis could get the organization to leap its many bureaucratic hurdles to bring your deal to market? What form of value is aligned with the needs of the organization right now?

All the tactics in the world won’t help you get someone to pay attention to you if they think you’re not worth their time. If you believe you actually have value to offer, make it so obvious they can’t ignore you.

Show them why they should care, and maybe they’ll come around to see you for all your natural beauty.


9 Responses to He’s Just Not That Into You
  1. Doron Greenspan Reply

    Great insight Scott. I’ve come up against this a few times confusing interest/excitement in what my company does with desire to work with us/pay for our service. I’ve started to ask deeper qualifying questions in conversation to get a real measure of their needs. Now I’ll start tailoring my responses to speak to both their organizational mind and individual mind. Thanks for writing this up!

    • slpollack Reply

      That’s great, Doron! It can sometimes be tough to decipher whether pushback/disinterest/lack of momentum is due to the Organizational Mind or the Individual Mind, but finding alignment between the two is critical to getting agreement and moving forward.

  2. The Local Politics of Selling an Idea - The Start of the Deal - Scott Pollack on Business Development and Partnerships Reply

    […]  Like the senator, find the outlets to spread your message locally. Nurture your advocates whose personal needs you can address.  Think globally, but act locally.  It works to win elections, and it works to sell […]

  3. Amy Reply

    Scott… i tried to reach you on linked in – nutting!! I’d like to quote you for one of my courses and want to find out if that’s ok – AmyApplebaum http://www.AmyApplebaum.com I think your stuff is AMAZING!!

    • slpollack Reply

      Wow so sorry that I missed this! Of course, always appreciate being quoted.

  4. Big Sexy Deals - The Start of the Deal - Scott Pollack on Business Development and Partnerships Reply

    […] Sometimes Big Sexy Deals will be out of reach no matter how much time or effort you put into them. Perhaps that’s because your product is not mature enough to provide value to a prospective partner’s customers, or because your brand is not well known enough to be attractive.  Big Sexy Deals require a mutual exchange of value and sometimes you’re just not there yet. […]

  5. Juan Matson Reply

    Your insight about the Value topic is great and, in my belief, the cornerstone of Biz Dev. Although I got into this Blog late I’m looking forward to further discussions.I also believe that you can’t create value if you don’t really understand your Customer (internal or external) needs, or even motivations or concerns (as in many cases not necessarily a Customer may think that’s in need of something or doesn’t know where to get it or what to get).
    Thanks for your setting up this blog.
    Kind regards.

    • slpollack Reply

      Thanks Juan!

  6. […] Sometimes Big Sexy Deals will be out of reach no matter how much time or effort you put into them. P... https://startofthedeal.com/2014/10/09/201410big-sexy-deals

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