Rule #23 – You don’t want everyone as a customer.

Holy hot dogs. I’ve been spending the last few weeks trying to source a specific kind of medical software for my employer and EVERY vendor I’ve talked to would have been better served to save us both a bunch of trouble and hang up on me from the word “go.” I’m a reasonably intelligent individual, but for no amount of charts and graphs and screenshots is making any of this make any sense.

My experience with these folks is like this: I tell them what we do. I tell them what we need in the software. I tell them what I want to pay. They nod politely, then forget everything I just said and proceed to pitch their product, wasting my valuable time and theirs.

Not every person out there is a potential customer. Not every person who is interested in your product or service is going to like it. This is a good thing. Yes, you need customers. But what you don’t need is a bunch of round holes that you sold a square solution. Selling people what is “wrong” for them just because you are all about closing deals will make you want to jump off of a cliff. Their support needs will increase while their satisfaction decreases, which is the business equivalent of buying a Yugo.

The success of your business once isn’t about customers finding you to be the right solution for them. It’s also about you finding that they are the right customers for you. On the long street of selling, traffic needs to run both ways for people to get anywhere.


One Response

  1. Good point. Reminds me of the “4 Hour Workweek” where the guy purposfully ditched his two customers that were taking up the majority of his time. The slight decline in profit was completely offset by his ability to focus on other priorities (let alone take away a ton of personal stress).

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