The Cure For “I’m not Interested”

“Josh, when I cold call prospects, they tell me they’re not interested. How do I overcome this objection?”

This is going to be a tough pill, so buckle up.

If you hear “I’m not interested” far too many times, it means you’re not interesting :-).

We know from Jobs-to-be-Done theory that prospects are making progress when you reach out. They’re getting from point A to point B.

Prospects aren’t in a sales cycle; they’re determining if they can make progress without you.

So when you pitch your value prop for a “better triathlon training program that helps you cross the finish line,” prospects tune out because they subconsciously think, “I’m making progress with my current training program.”

“I’m not interested” is what prospects say when they don’t perceive you as being meaningfully different.

What’s the way out?

Instead of pitching a value proposition, you need to illuminate a problem your prospect doesn’t know that can hurt them.

You have to ask a question that gets your prospect to see the world differently.

In other words, you have to poke the bear.

You need a point of view, not a value prop.

By way of example, imagine that you’re an Ironman triathlon coach.

What does a triathlon coach do?

Most people will say that a coach helps you finish an Ironman.

That’s true, but every triathlon coach does that.

Coach “Bob” is meaningfully different because he gets you across the finish line without spending 20+ hours a week training.

What can you do with Coach Bob that you can’t currently do? Cross the finish line without putting a strain on your family and losing your Sundays.

Here’s the cold call:

“Hi, Josh. Coach Bob. We’ve never spoken, but I was hoping to speak with you for a moment. Do you have two minutes?”

“Thanks. Many triathletes I coach say they’re spending 20+ hours training for an Ironman. I call that divorce by triathlon 🙂

“Just out of curiosity, how are you balancing work/family life with Ironman training?”

Conversation started.

Then shut the front door.

Peel the onion.

Be curious about how the “triathlete” is getting the job done without having an ulterior motive. Use mirrors and labels to make people feel heard.

The takeaway?

Being interesting starts with having a point of view.

What do you know that your prospects don’t know that can hurt them?