Every salesperson knows what they want out of their next client meeting—to close! But how do you make sure your first appointment will lead to getting your prospect’s business?
More importantly, how can you make sure this meeting is wildly successful and super efficient?
Your goal should be to make the most out of your sales appointment—and like any goal, step one is making a plan!
Determine Your Winning Strategy
You want your client meeting to be the best use of your time—and your client’s. It’s worth taking time before your meeting to think about strategy. I recommend that you sit down and outline what an effective sales appointment will look like.
First, I ask myself: What will a wildly successful outcome for this meeting look like? By envisioning total success, you can then reverse engineer your goals for the meeting.
Secondly, consider the amount of time you want to dedicate to each step of the sales process during this meeting. This timeline includes:
- Building Rapport
- Needs Analysis
- Identifying the Solution
- Closing For Next Steps
This timeline will help you stay on track and keep moving—stick to it! In time, you’ll have it down to a science. In my own prospect meetings, I allocate 25 minutes to ask questions, 15 minutes to talk about the solution, and 5 minutes to close for next steps.
Finally, outline the questions you want to ask your prospect. For example, if your prospective client is a golf course, you’ll want to research the other golf courses that your organization works with and come up with some “A-ha!” talking points that you can bring up during your conversation.
The needs analysis (or discovery) is the most important part of your prospect meeting, and that’s where most time should be spent. This includes the time you spend ahead of your meeting doing research. Asking enough questions—and making sure they’re the right questions—makes all the difference when it’s time for your proposal.
Stop Winging It!
Too many sales professionals just show up to client meetings and wing it. They call their sales manager 10 minutes before the meeting, asking if there’s any talking points they should know about. They’re kicking themselves throughout the whole meeting, wishing they spent some time on research.
Don’t be one of those salespeople!
Instead, put in the work on the front end. Know what outcome you want, and plan for it. When it’s time for the meeting, all the pressure is off—you know what you’ll say and when you’ll say it. You’re relaxed and free to adapt without worrying about looking like a fool.
Relaxed, confident, and prepared salespeople win business. It’s as simple as that.
Set Yourself Up For Success
As the saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” A plan and some preparation is the best way to set yourself up to succeed during your next sales meeting. Whether it’s a big presentation or a one-on-one meeting with a prospect, being prepared pays off!
Until next time—go sell some stuff!