my musings on technology

Sell Yourself Better!

Posted by on Jun 5, 2009 in Musings | 2 comments

In my role as VP of IT for a publicly traded company, I receive an abundance of calls, emails, mailings and drop-by visits from vendors desperate to get their foot in the door. I’m at the point where I don’t answer my desk phone anymore and check my work voicemail weekly (at best), but that’s not the reason for this post.

Today I received 2 unsolicited emails from want-to-be vendors that I felt the need to showcase. Vendor #1 sent the following:

Hi Steve,

My name is xxx and I represent xxx. I don’t want to bore you too much but I just wanted to introduce the company and touch base. We are a premier solutions provider that partners with best of breed manufacturers in the areas of Systems, Storage, Security, and Networking. We do a lot of work in the valley and can help with all aspects of the IT infrastructure. I have attached our corporate brochure as well as our core competencies to help give you more information on us as a company. I will give you a call next week and would like the opportunity to work with you and earn your business.

Look forward to speaking with you

Pretty bleak and boring if you ask me! “I don’t want to bore you too much”?? How is that going to spark my attention and get me to pick up the phone and call him!

Now let’s look at Vendor #2:

Dear Steve,

I am pleased to invite you to become a member of the xxx Advisory Board. As an industry expert, xxx is looking for your insight to assist us in creating the next generation of thin client devices. Your opinion will help us shape the direction we choose to proceed with our products. In return, xxx will provide you with a complimentary thin client customized to your exact requirements.

As a member of our Advisory Board, we ask that you participate in a short call with our Advisory Board Account Manager. The Account Manager will coordinate the delivery of your thin client and schedule a follow-up call to get your opinion on the unit.

xxx is an emerging market leader in the development of thin clients and network appliances. xxx Thin Clients are Citrix Ready and VMware Ready.

We hope you will accept our offer and join our Advisory Board. Your expertise and opinion are valuable to us. If you have any questions or would like to discuss this further, please contact xxx

Best Regards,”

Wow! I am ready to pick up the phone and call. Now I completely see through the façade of the “Advisory Board” and know this is a solicitation for business but what a great angle to come from! What I like about this (and I will call this guy) is how they are being creative and playing to the executive’s ego!

In these tougher economics times you have to sell yourself better than the other guy. This is true whether you are a vendor, a job candidate or even an employee! Always think about how you can stand out in the crowd and differentiate yourself. No one is interested in ‘boring’!

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