Being blocked by a gatekeeper can be extremely frustrating, especially when you know your product is perfect for their business. You call a prospect or stop by in person and are met with the old “give me your business card and I’ll have the manager call you” or “shoot us an email” and never hear from them again. Been there? Here are a few proven strategies to move you inside:
- Send a personalized letter – When you call or stop in to a prospect, the words “I’m following up on a letter I sent your manager on (this date) gets a foot in the door. Think about it. The gatekeeper does not know if your letter is important or not, but also doesn’t want to make a mistake and cause their boss to miss important information. Write up a personal letter to your prospect, attach a copy of a compelling white paper and set a reminder to follow up.
- Hold an invitation-only meeting – Draft an invitation to an executive-only meeting. Similar to previous, when you call to follow up, the gatekeeper doesn’t want to be responsible for their supervisor or owner missing something that might be valuable. You are in.
- Use the gatekeeper as an ally – Find out what the gatekeeper does for the business. Give props for the contributions they make and then sell to them as if they were the decision-maker and ask their advice. Show them how your product adds value.
- Try social media – Find your prospect on LinkedIn and send an InMail, or Tweet them asking their advice on an industry-specific area. People love being asked for their opinion, and this approach can often get you past the gatekeeper.