Not long ago I engaged a fellow professional networker in conversation---someone I'd never met before. The conversation instantly fell apart, and the "why" should be of concern to everyone who interacts with a prospective customer.
My opening gambit was to ask for a business card and the statement that I was interested in the pertinent service on behalf of someone else I knew. And I stated a specific reason for the interest.
I expected follow-up questions from the service provider so that more insight in my interest could be gained. To my utter surprise, the person refuted my reason and began a lecture -- with statistics -- to buttress the refutation.
A better way to have handled this was for the person to validate me and understand my perspective, and to reinforce that with additional ways to use the service. After all, I was a hot lead. Who cares why I might want to buy unless I was absolutely a poor fit. Which I wasn't.
As one would expect, I disengaged from this unproductive discussion and scratched this provider from my hot list. I'm not going to do business with someone who fundamentally disrespected me.
Bottom Line: When a prospect reaches out, every effort should be made to welcome and validate that prospect. After that, take time to better understand the prospect's needs and share ideas for making the prospect's experience the best it can be.