As any sales pro knows, it typically takes a lot of work to land a meeting with a potential client. You may spend a significant amount of time researching prospects and then warming them up before that first call. Considering the effort that goes into securing that initial appointment, it’s critical to make the most of the meeting.
However, this doesn’t mean you should go into the meeting in pitch mode. A post on The Center for Sales Strategy blog says that the best sales professionals use the first appointment to uncover business challenges.
If you want to get better at those first calls, keep reading this issue of PromoPro Daily. We’re highlighting the post, which explains 4 ways to fully leverage first meetings with prospects. Spend a few minutes socializing with the prospect and then try the following tips.
1. Let the prospect know your intention. Your goal is to walk away from the meeting with an assignment. What big problem is the prospect willing to spend money to solve? This is how you want to help.
2. Show that you understand them. No one wants to be sold to, so don’t kick off the call with a sales pitch. Remember that prospects want to work with someone who gets where they’re coming from. The post recommends pulling from your research to demonstrate that you know something about their business.
3. Ask thoughtful questions. It’s important to use this first meeting to discover the prospect’s challenges and problems. Don’t just wing it but go into the call with a list of prepared questions. You can then discuss how you can help the prospect solve their problems. The post points out the importance of your research in this step. You shouldn’t ask questions that you should know the answers to. Always ask open-ended questions that can prompt the prospect to share more about their situation.
4. Don’t rush things. According to the post, when you first seek to understand, you’ll have plenty of time to be understood. In other words, you’ll have the chance to pitch your offering and close a deal. Take your time in the conversation and avoid pressuring the prospect to buy. This is how you can keep things moving along, rather than driving away the prospect.
A positive first meeting can open the door to more conversations, which can lead to long and fruitful sales relationships. Use the guidance above to make the most of a first call with new sales prospects.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: The Center for Sales Strategy blog. The Center for Sales Strategy is a sales performance improvement company.
Published with Permission From PPAI