Lemons into lemonade! Isn’t that what they say? In sales, this can seem almost impossible when the crushing disappointment of a meeting-gone-bad seems too heavy to handle.
Going into appointments well equipped with a few tips can help avoid these negative outcomes. Take a few tips from some sales superstars:
1. You are never as prepared as you think. Always go into your appointment with confidence but also build in flexibility and the ability to shift focus quickly.
2. Ever heard the phrase “when you assume, you make an ASS out of U and ME”? Avoid assumptions, as they are your worst enemy.
3. Use your “Spidey sales senses” to alert you to problems or discomfort and be prepared to address them head on. For example, pull the reins at any sign of hesitation and find out what is driving the doubt. Take time to ask questions and actively listen.
4. Be prepared to take responsibility for problems whether or not they are your fault. A previous sales rep may have caused some damage and you must now accept it as your own
challenge. The “blame game” is never helpful. Providing solutions is the priority.
5. Keep in mind that you could knock the possible sale out of the park and still present yourself as unlikeable to the prospect, undoing your hard work. Presenting a respected, knowledgeable, humble and likeable persona is vital throughout the course of the meeting. Keep your emotions and personal opinions in check!
6. Lay out expectations from the get-go. Working towards different outcomes can throw you off course before you even hit the road. Reiterate the needs of the prospect and how you plan to address them.
7. If time is tight, reschedule. Rushing through your pitch automatically renders it less effective and it ensures that you will miss out on valuable clues offered by the prospect. Rescheduling a meeting, rather than racing to beat the clock, shows you respect their time and that what you have to say is valuable.
8. Meetings should always include a decision-maker. It is a waste of
both parties’ time to pass the info along to a middleman. If the decision maker cannot attend, reschedule. Always…
9. Identify any obstacles before heading into the meeting. If the prospective customers have experienced recent budget cuts or disappointing ROI’s, preparation can save the day!
In every disappointment lies an opportunity. A good sales person learns to recognize the opportunity as a challenge and tackles it head on. Each disappointment should stand as a lesson to be learned and applied to future appointments!