Spreading ideas through “influencers”

I received a call yesterday from a gentleman with a company that doesn’t sell or market anything but wanted to give me complementary access to a whitepaper because I’m an “influencer” in my organization.  When I received it, it was nothing more than a tracking link to an article on their website.  Needless to say I didn’t click on it.

When we spoke, he couldn’t tell me what our company did.  Didn’t know who I was.  But had “received” my name from someone higher up (unless he just made it up which is actually quite likely). If I’m an influencer it is because I don’t pander the wares of firms like this.  I screen out the bad, the stupid and the outright outrageous to those I supposedly influence.

The mere fact that this firm targets people in this manner makes them worse than SPAM. But it got me to thinking about how often we play this same game ourselves when we are trying to get our way – presumably because we know better ways of doing something.

All of us at some point work to win influencers over to our way of thinking so that they will then try to spread that information on to those they then influence.  Some do it with grace and others may be more obvious in their approaches.  But the outcome is the same – we look to use them to spread our idea.

This is the sales process everyday.  When you make phone calls into organizations you are dealing with influencers who will judge everything you say and do with extreme scrutiny.  Doing all of the right things is a good start but will never be enough.