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Do you want to do business or not?

This post is a little be off-topic but it’s a kind of therapy for me. Writing is good for the peace of mind, isn’t it ?

Over the last few weeks I’ve been disappointed several times by potential suppliers and partners who have shown themselves non-responsive and far from what one could call “customer oriented”.


Let’s start first with a little bit of background.

We are constantly dealing with a dozen of customer projects and initiate sometimes contacts, on behalf of our customers, with potential suppliers and partners.


Example #1

We were for instance in search of an IT partner to realize a m-payment solution for the French market. I got the contact details of a startup and because the technology we were looking for was not readily available, a startup was a potential candidate. I got in touch with them and after 2 weeks without an answer, I decided to send them a reminder (emails sometimes don’t arrive and it’s fair to give a second chance, right?). I finally got an “answer”; more precisely I got a text back which was copied/pasted from somewhere else (different fonts, different sizes, even different colors) and which was not answering my question. On top of that, just to make sure he had ruined his very last to make business with me, he replied by calling me with another first name.

Enough with him; I have no more time to lose with such people.


Example #2

For a customer in the IT sector we were thinking of enhancing customer experience through webcam service. I got the contact details of a firm in Brussels which specializes in this technology and made sure that an email was sent on my behalf to the account manager by someone he knew already. Despite reminders I never got an answer in 4 weeks. He’s on my black list.


Example #3

I was talking to a New Media specialist and got very enthusiastic about him and his vision. I immediately offered to pay him to take care of some PR aspects of our business. Although I sent him a reminder and saw in person to remind him of my interest, I never got an answer in 4 weeks.



My take:

Those three examples have something in common. They all involve an entrepreneur or a startup.

Guys, I’ve understanding for your being busy developing your products and services. But believe me or not, if nobody wants to buy from you the adventure will soon be over.

Dear entrepreneurs, dear freelancers, please change your attitude and answer as fast as possible to prospects and would-be clients. There will be no second chance to make a good impression. You know it! It’s written everywhere and yet you don’t take this seriously.


Author: Pierre-Nicolas Schwab

Dr. Pierre-Nicolas Schwab is the founder of IntoTheMinds. He specializes in e-commerce, retail and logistics. He is also a research fellow in the marketing department of the Free University of Brussels and acts as a coach for several startups and public organizations. He holds a PhD in Marketing, a MBA in Finance, and a MSc in Chemistry. He can be contacted by email, Linkedin or by phone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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