Big news, you’ve landed a meeting with a big potential client. You’ve been in telecom for years, you know your stuff. You have an impressive sales record, but isn’t there always room for improvement? How will you make sure you land the sale? Here are four tips for how to prepare for a successful initial meeting.
Maintain your online presence
Before meeting in person, make sure all of your social media accounts are up-to-date and representative of you as a business person. If you don’t have a separate Facebook and Twitter account targeted to your clients, now is the time to make one. Next, send a friend request on LinkedIn or Facebook or follow your prospects on Twitter. Your prospects may not accept, but curiosity is bound to at least draw them to your page. When they see fresh, informative content, they’ll think you really know your stuff.
Find Common Ground
Just like a first date, try to find out what your potential client enjoys and find common interests. As the saying goes, people do business with people they like. Do a little bit of Google stalking… er, research, on what kinds of hobbies and past times the client has. Did your potential client recently post pictures of his last hike on Facebook? When you meet, casually mention a hike you took last weekend. When in doubt, you always have food, gas prices or sports to fall back on.
Know when to be proactively reactive
All great sales people know that sales are closed by making conversation, not pitches. Walk in to the meeting with a few possible scenarios and a mental outline of your response. Canned questions, checklists, and other "tools" should be avoided when possible. This will keep your conversation natural and your prospects won’t feel like they are being sold to.
Use your demos
A product used is a product sold in any industry, but especially in telecom when people can’t picture a service such as Hosted VoIP quite as easily as a product like an iPad. Again, don’t go into a meeting with a pitch, but if your client mentions a pain point where you can demonstrate a solution, ask if they have a moment and offer to show them an example. People learn best by hearing, seeing, and doing. By letting your client engage with the actual product or service, you not only take away the telecom jargon, but you engage both their rational and emotional interests. Yes, this product would solve our issue, and yes, it is really cool.
We can always stand to sharpen our sales skills. What types of strategies have you used recently?