a dog standing in front of a truck

Make No Mistake, We're Selling

Solidarity Sunday:

Make No Mistake, We're Selling

Part 4 of "How the Machine Works"

My cousin Mike has a saying…"Whether it's computer chips or potato chips, business is about selling things to people."

If we're organizing, growing, and filling job calls, we're selling. We're selling our contractors on our better workforce. We're selling non-union workers on being a part of something greater than themselves. We're selling our wages, benefits, retirement, and safer working conditions. We're selling our ability to collectively bargain a better deal for those who join our ranks. We're selling a group of people who have each other's back. We're selling young people on a future, on our apprenticeship and training. We may call it something different but make no mistake, we're selling.

And if we're selling we have to understand how people buy, how "buyers" make decisions.

In a previous Solidarity Sunday, we talked about 4-stages of how we make decisions and how the local can put an organizing strategy in place to take advantage it.
  • The 1st order of business is to get them to know and like us long before they ever need us
  • The 2nd is to get them to see themselves in our mission and what we do
  • The 3rd is to provide them with the facts and details to justify their decision
  • And the 4th is to respond immediately when they are ready

We call this final phase of selling, Execution. Think about your own buying habits. When you've done your research and you're ready to pull the trigger on a product or service, and the company you reach out to doesn't respond? It's frustrating and you only give them so much grace before you move on to your next option. If they don't want your money, you'll quickly find someone who does. It's the same way with organizing. When we get a lead, we must execute immediately.

Stage 4: Execution: If we've done our job right, they know us, they like us, we've given them the facts and details for them to justify their decision, and now they're ready to reach out to us. If we get a lead and don't respond immediately, someone else will.

Goal: Respond to leads immediately to let them know they are in the right place with the right people.

Plan: Respond immediately to leads. Think like a salesperson. Any lead that is over 24 hours old has less than a 5% chance of closing. Create and cultivate an organizing culture that responds immediately to the needs of those who reach out to us. Not tomorrow or this week, immediately. If they've gone to the trouble to contact us, they are ready. Now. No one calls us or messages us just to chat. They are ready to make a change, and the only question they have is "am I in the right place?"

Tools: Quick response times, great phone etiquette and sales training (we can help with that). Automated message tools for email, message, to cut down on response time to immediately to leads that come in to the local. Nurturing tools to stay in touch with them throughout the process.

Are you organizing 24.7?

Your organizers need highly targeted digital support to be as effective as possible. They need to be able to geo-target non-union jobs, talk to young people about joining your local, and have ready-made leads delivered to their mobile phones. Union Up's Organize 24.7™ program uses big data and streamlined automation to deliver real-time information about experienced tradespeople, apprentices, and contractors who are ready to work with you.


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