You never know where new business will come from. All I can ever do is keep pursuing it. We don’t look at any sale as a single event, but as an opportunity to build a long-term relationship. That also means that we always look out for our clients’ best interests over our own including often telling them not to take certain deals if they are not right. The long term relationship is worth far more than the short term gain of a single sale. Most of our business is from past clients and referrals. Other new business, however, comes from people who find us online, see our ads, read our articles, attend our speaking engagements and from my outbound cold calling and follow up.
In late 2008 and 2009 many of our competitors told us that they were taking extended time off because nothing was happening. To me, that was an invitation to work harder, make more calls and build more relationships. It sounded like an invitation and roadmap to success. I never wish anyone ill will, but if they weren’t going to call owners, then I was going to and as a result hopefully come out of the recession stronger and with a greater piece of the total aircraft sales pie. And, I believe that it paid off! It also helps that we have 36 years of successful experience and recent sales to speak about and support our value proposition.
Of course, calling someone and finding out that day that they need help buying or selling is a great thing, but I’m still going to be here buying and selling airplanes for years to come. Getting to know someone today might not turn into business today, but I will welcome the business and be excited for it whenever the operator needs our help in the future. I have been talking to the head of a flight department that I originally cold called several years ago. Over the last year, we have been talking with a little greater frequency as he was preparing for a transition based on a pending new delivery. Early last week he asked for a proposal to help him sell his existing asset. At the end of last week, he told me that they intended to hire us. He also called a reference that I provided. That reference was from one of my all time greatest cold-call successes. It was large public company whom I coincidentally called one day when they were in the process of selecting a broker to help them buy and sell. We immediately prepared and hand delivered a proposal to that client and eventually won their business to help buy and sell several large body aircraft.
You never know where you might meet someone or who you might call that can potentially turn into new business and consequently, I never stop looking. As a result, we continue to win new business one sale and one phone call at a time. I am proud of our successes, but will never rest on the past. Each sale and each call is an opportunity to build a long-term relationship. I look forward to talking to you and helping you in any way that I can, even long ahead of a time to buy or sell.