The average MSP may not know how important remembering names is in the marketing game. However, even if most MSPs knew, it would do much good since business people commonly tell themselves and others that they are, “bad with names”.
Does this mean that if you’re bad with names that you are doomed and the use of this powerful marketing tool is simply beyond your grasp? No, in this article we will discuss how important remembering names truly is and give some practical advice on how MSPs can improve their ability to remember names.
Why it’s Important to Remember Names
No matter whether you’re an MSP marketing technology or selling ice cubes to eskimos remembering a prospects name is essential to success because it makes them feel important! It’s often been said that one of the most important sounds a person can hear is their name coming across someone else’s lips.
When you remember the name of your prospect in an initial meeting you will make a great first impression, create an amazing personal connection and build rapport. You will really stand out because most business people simply don’t even try to remember names these days.
If you make the mistake of forgetting a prospects name this tells them they are not important. I often feel that an invisible wall appears between a person and the people who can’t remember their name. The last thing you want to happen during your sales process it is to develop this negative tension.
Practical Techniques for Remembering Names
The first step in becoming a person that can easily recall names is to stop telling yourself that you can’t remember names and begin saying that you are excellent at remembering names. That may sound ridiculous but the creative mind or subconscious mind does what its ordered to do. If you continually tell yourself i.e. your creative mind, that you are, “bad with names” then your creative mind will see to it that you don’t remember names.
On the other hand, if you continually tell yourself that you are good with names and can easily recall any name you hear, then your subconscious mind will once again obey your orders and help you to start remembering names more easily.
One of the best tricks to remembering names is to use word association with the name you want to remember. Word association means, when you hear a new name that you immediately associate that name with something that’s extremely memorable. One of the easiest ways to employ this technique is to think of something that reminds you of that person’s name. A good example would be to take a name like Mickey and associate it with Mickey Mouse and then you should have a mental picture of Mickey Mouse in your mind.
Now you just need to keep repeating the name you want to remember along with the name of the mental picture you have chosen to associate with the name. I like to look at the person whose name I am trying to remember so that I can also associate their face with the name and the associated imagery. It also helps to say the name along with your chosen association out loud when you’re first introduced to someone new, whose name you will try to remember.
Recently I was invited to speak in Houston at an Autotask roadshow event. They were expecting around 20 or so IT providers to come learn about Autotask’s endpoint protection. I decided that I could make a great impression on the audience if I got to meet them all before I spoke and remembered all their names. The first thought that shot through my head was that this was going to be a difficult challenge since I was, “bad with names!”
Right then I caught this bad habit and realized I was only bad with names because I had been telling my subconscious mind to be bad with names. Therefore, I switched the message in my mind and started telling myself that I am good with names.
Then I walked around the room introducing myself and getting the names of the attendees. Once I would hear a person’s name I would tell them that I was working on remembering names and that I use word association to do so. In one situation, I met a man named Ron Howard (literally) and I associated him immediately with Opie from the Andy Griffith Show. When I told him how I was going to remember his name by associating it with the Andy Griffith show, he laughed.
Finally, when the event started I looked around the room and repeated all the names and associations I had made. During my talk, I could point out people in the audience and use their names when I would make up examples. When the event was over I thanked everyone that attended for coming and remembered all their names!
I can’t even begin to explain how satisfying it was recalling all the names of the MSPs I met the Autotask roads how. You can enjoy the same level of fulfillment if you began to implement some of the recommendations I have shared in this article for remembering names. Chief among these principals is to start telling yourself that you are good with names. Also, keep in mind how important you make your MSP marketing prospects feel when you go to the trouble of remembering their names.
About our Contributor
David Walter is the Marketing Director at MSP SEO Factory, a company providing IT marketing to businesses in the United States. Their expertise is creating managed services marketing ideas and turning them into original, optimized blog posts. Their process involves in-depth brainstorming, thorough editing, and effective promotion of fresh and unique articles for their MSP Business clients.
He has 16 years experience in marketing for the IT industry, as well as experience in direct MSP marketing, internet marketing, article writing. David speaks at trade shows, webinars and is a sales trainer for major IT companies. He is also a published author; his latest book is ‘Stratospheric Marketing Secrets’.