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3 Steps To Getting A Sales Meeting


The best way to get a new customer is to clearly identifywho you want to do business with and then get in front of them. They canthen see what you look like, possibly see what your product looks like and alsoexamine any data or statistics you might have. It gives you the idealopportunity to start building a positive working relationship with your potentialcustomer.

Advertising, direct mail, web sites and telesales all havetheir place but nothing beats the face to face interview.The first challenge is, of course, getting to speak to yourprospect and arrange a meeting.

When you phone your prospect's organisation it's highlypossible you won't get through initially even if you havetheir direct number. There's always an assistant, acolleague or voice mail to deal with.

# 1 Deal with the other person

1. Always be pleasant and polite. Use the person's name assoon as you know it but not over familiar.

2. Use your prospects name and your name; say - "Will youplease tell John Smith that Alan Fairweather is on the phonefor him."

3. If you're asked what it's about, say - "It's about thecontents of a letter Mr Smith has received. (More later)Will you tell him that Alan Fairweather is on the phone forhim please!"

4. If you're told that your prospect is in a meeting, findout what time they'll be out of the meeting and ask if it that would be a good timeto call.

5. Thank the person for their help and say - "I'll call backat 3.30 and look forward to speaking to John then. Thanksfor your help Mary."

None of this is easy but persevere and don't be nuisance.Always be friendly, firm and courteous with Mary.

It sometimes helps to send a brief letter to your prospectexplaining that you'll call to arrange a short meeting.(Don't use the word appointment). Briefly state yourproduct or service benefit or even a couple of questions atthe start of the letter.

But don't make it a sales letter and don't encloseliterature. (Your prospect gets enough of the stuff).

# 2 Deal with voice mail:

1. Give your name, business name and phone number. Speakslow and clear, warm, friendly and businesslike.

2. Say what you do - "Were the people who minimiseproduction time and cost on..... I'd appreciate thecourtesy of a return call on ........"

3. You might want to make an appointment to call - "Iappreciate you're very busy Mr Smith, however I have someinteresting information for you. I'll call back at 3pm andwould be pleased if you'd speak to me."

4. Follow up with a fax or email and make it human.

5. Leave your phone number again, slow and clear.

Again this is a challenge, however if you sound warm andfriendly and that you could be worth talking to, then you'll get call backs.Always keep customer details handy because when prospects call back they say - "Hi Alan,its Fred I'm returning your call."If you made twenty calls that day you may not initially knowwho Fred is, so be prepared.

# 3 Sell the meeting

Once you speak to your prospect on the 'phone you need to doa good selling job to get the meeting. Most of the time they're going to say something like - "I'mnot really interested, we already have a supplier, I'm a bitbusy at present."

Always keep in mind that the majority of prospects arereasonable human beings and they have nothing against youpersonally. There's also a strong possibility that they'llwelcome a visit from you if you sound warm, friendly andbusinesslike.

If you sound like you have some worthwhile information toimpart and you don't sound pushy or manipulative then you'remore likely to get that meeting.

Plan your call carefully and consider the following.

1. Greeting - Speak slowly and clearly using the prospectsname, your name, and your business name

2. Courtesy - Ask if it's convenient to speak

3. Introduction - Say what you do and provide a benefit tothe prospect

4. Close - Ask for a short meeting at mutually convenienttime

5. Deal with resistance - Acknowledge what the prospectsays, outweigh with a benefit and close again

6. Don't use the word "appointment"

7. Don't start selling your product/service on the 'phoneonly sell the meeting

8. Don't say you'll send literature, say you'll bring itwith you

9. Don't be pushy, be persistent and pleasant

10. Have a fall-back position. If they won't see you thistime then ask if it would be OK to 'phone at an agreed timein the future - and make sure you do so.

You won't win them all however if you sound professional andpleasant, potential customers are more likely to see you, sodon't give up.

Alan Fairweather is the author of four ebooks in the "Howto get More Sales" series. Lots of practical actions youcan take to build your business and motivate your team -http://www.howtogetmoresales.com


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