I am sure that some of you are aware of our #ZENTips hashtag on Twitter. All our tweets with this hashtag contain a tip for agency recruiters to get more out of their business. One of those tips has caused a lot of people to message me to find out more.
“Build a sizzle pack for meetings AND drops #ZENTips”
I have been asked by a few people about what a sizzle pack is. I have also been questioned about ‘drops’, what are they and do they work?
The Sizzle Pack
What is a sizzle pack? The name is derived from the sales and marketing adage “Sell the Sizzle and not the Sausage”. No clearer?
Imagine you were tasked to sell fresh sausages, what will get them selling quickest? Cold flaccid sausages on the counter, or the sound and smell of freshly cooked sausages as you enter the store?
As a business professional the features and facets of your service is the sausage in this analogy. What your service will actually deliver to your prospects in terms of benefits and results is the sizzle.
So what should a recruitment consultant have in their Sizzle pack?
Case Studies. Proper ones. Good case studies describe a problem, a solution and an outcome. Once you start to create case studies on this basis you are starting to develop the sizzle. A single sheet case study like this is very powerful to give to prospects as it provides social proof and authority – two of the powerful weapons of influence mentioned by Cialdini in his book on persuasion in our review of books for recruiters. Two or three of these and it becomes very persuasive.
What else could we include?
I remember, as a recruiter, working for a large corporate how some in the business would moan about the lack of ‘marketing’ collatarel to take to client meetings. I never felt that a brochure about the PLC was going to win me a client. Anything written at head office is only going to be corporate vision and tub thump about numbers of offices and FTSE250 clients. Most of my prospect clients weren’t really interested in that. They were more interested in who was going to help them and work their assignments. Included in my sizzle pack was my profile – A summary of my experience and recent assignments I has recently completed. Looking back, it was much like a mini Linkedin profile. Today I think with a good PDF editor and my Linekdin profile I could produce something even more ‘professional’ than the word doc it was back then. As well as my single sheet profile I also included shorter synopses for the rest of the team. I also made sure I included recent testimonials from clients and candidates. Even back then there were recruiters who were concerned about candidate experience. Each testimonial from a client was married to the testimonial from the candidate who was placed there.
Essentially this sizzle pack gave a benefit rich pack to leave behind with a client that produced much better results than leaving a corporate brochure and a mouse mat. It was also cheaper and I had much more editorial control of the content. I liked it – because clients loved it. It made it easier for them to say ‘yes’ to the proposition as they had a greater level of comfort in the decision making process.
In Summary a Sizzle Pack Includes:
- Case Studies – Relevant to the sector, industry, product, skill set or business size (or all of them!)
- Recruiter Profile – Background, summary of recent assignments and demonstrated capability to deliver
- Team Profile – Smaller synopses of relevant team members to demonstrate breadth of coverage, depth of knowledge and additional resources to call upon
- Testimonials – From happy clients with associated candidate testimonials
I am sure you will be able to refine a Sizzle pack for your business and market. The important thing is that it focuses on results, benefits and solutions NOT feature lists and service offering content.
What are drops? A drop is when you enter a business premises, identify a contact and leave a pack of information. The pack I used to leave behind was the Sizzle Pack above with 2 additions – A covering letter and a profile of a candidate I was representing at the time to showcase the types of individuals I worked with. A drop is not turning up in reception and expecting to catch a decision maker for a meeting. That is door stepping. I have also tried door stepping and found it unproductive (we all learn through trial and error don’t we?).
The concept of drops at the time was that if I was going out to see a client about a specific recruitment project I would make the most out of the journey by visiting the businesses in the immediate (walking distance) vicinity. Such as next door. The process was pretty easy, as receptionists would provide me with a compliment slip that I would write down the name of the decision maker (in this case normally MDs and FDs) and I would give them a manila envelope with “BY HAND” written on the front and the decision maker’s name. Very, very rarely did this envelope not make it to the decision maker. It then gave me a follow up call to make the next day that often began with the decision maker asking me about the drop process itself! Rapport building (most of the time) and certainly standing out from my competitors. The more of this I did the more success I experienced with it. Industrial estates were easiest but I also did a few office blocks using the ‘paparazzi swerve’ routine – another blog post perhaps.
With 25 manila envelopes in the boot of the car I always had enough to make sure that once I was out of the office I made the most out of every trip I went on. For those of you who start to think “that won’t work for me…my market…my clients…” I thought that once upon a time. Then I did it.
“The greatest gift that extraordinarily successful people have over the average person is their ability to take action.” – Anthony Robbins