Dos and Don’ts in customer meetings to close a sale

You have successfully nurtured your leads and have now become SQL or “Sales Qualified Lead. 

Your leads are prepared to speak with you regarding your products and services. What possibly could go wrong at this point? In actuality, quite a bit. 

65% of sales professionals state that their closure rate is no higher than 21%. A whopping 79% of sales qualified leads are typically lost. Based on this, it implies that there is a significant likelihood you won’t close your next lead. 

The good news is that you are not required to become part of these depressing statistics. By taking a few extra procedures that salespeople generally overlook (or are unaware of), you can perform better! 

Type of customer meetings 

After speaking with a prospect for the first time, you cannot expect to close a contract. Companies with lengthy sales cycles schedule three customer meetings in addition to a series of emails before the conversion occurs: 

Discovering session – This is your first encounter with a warm, qualified lead, and it is intended to help you better grasp the particular requirements of a potential client. A salesperson can get the data needed to conduct a productive sales meeting with the aid of this session.

Sales appointment session – The decision to buy from you is most likely to be influenced by this dialogue. Sales meetings, in contrast to discovery meetings, are focused on the salesperson’s responses to the queries and issues raised during the previous meeting. 

An after-meeting session – A sales meeting does really mark the culmination of the sale. But it doesn’t indicate whether the deal was a success. A follow-up meeting is frequently required to address any issues that either party had following the sales appointment.

Three steps to productive customer meetings

Your opportunity to close a transaction is a successful customer meeting. You must go through the following stages to ensure that you are as successful as possible:

➤ Preparation prior to customer meetings

➤ Actual customer meetings

➤ Follow-up after the meeting

Preparation prior to meeting

Preparation / Planning is the first step in customer meetings. This is the time to do your homework.

 Here’s a checklist for preparing for sales meetings 

 Define your desired result

 Establish the meeting’s format.

 Make research about the lead

 Make your presentation unique and personalised. 

Define your desired result

Clearly, converting a prospect is your primary objective. But is there a simple extra step that can be taken to improve the chances of conversion? It could be an introduction to other decision-makers, a deadline for making a choice, or arranging a call in order to follow up. Establish more manageable objectives to protect conversion.

Establish the meeting’s format

You can create a structure for the meeting after you have the relevant facts in your possession. You’ll either add or omit specific processes based on what you’ve learnt from your potential consumers. For instance, if you’re the first business they contact, there’s no need to bring up the competition. 

A meeting format is a summary of your conversation that emphasizes the key areas of discussion. However, it isn’t engraved in stone. Leave space in your strategy for a prospect to ask questions, make wishes, list goals, or explain their particular scenario.

It’s crucial to plan out the essential topics, such as pricing, rivals, questions, and objections, even if you’ll have to stray from your script quite a bit during the meeting. Jumping from subject to subject will inevitably confuse your prospect. No one desires that.

Tip! When starting the chat, prepare the meeting agenda and distribute it. By doing so, you can ensure that everyone is on the same page and prevent pointless interference.

Make research about the Lead

Keep your customer meeting from becoming a dry presentation. You must get to know the person or team you will be speaking with in order to create a specific plan for your future conversation.

Do your research beforehand. How big is their business? Where do they fit in? Which aspects of your product or service do you think similar businesses are most interested in, in your opinion? 

Since we’re discussing a warm lead, your CRM system ought to allow you to access this data.

Make your presentation unique and personalised

You should personalize your sales presentation as much as possible. Do not base the organization of your meetings on a small or generic set of data. Before the sales meeting, you should also research questions that can ask to provide you more insight as to what solutions you can offer the lead. Questions like: 

  • What issues are a client trying to address?

  • Have they already made an effort to solve the issue?

  • Do they already know about your solution?

  • Can your proposed solution actually assist them? (being honest with your prospects and not trying to sell them something that doesn’t meet their needs is the key to a successful deal)

  • What keeps them from making a purchase immediately away?

How do you find the solutions? 

Your lead has already agreed to speak with you for a period of time. Additionally, they want to get the most out of this exchange. So, don’t be afraid to include a list of questions that will enable you to contribute value to the conversation in an email that also includes meeting information. 

Actual sales meeting 

The crucial time has come. Even though you did your best to get ready for this meeting, it’s still too soon to relax.

What could possible go wrong, then? 

Unfortunate situations can derail your well-laid out plan and keep you from completing the transaction or sale. Other than accidentally mispronouncing your prospect’s name, there are several blunders you may do that will cause you to lose this client.

Here are good examples:

1. Omitting to present the meeting’s agenda 

Before starting the presentation, explain the meeting’s structure to your prospective client. This will assist you in avoiding rash comments or inquiries that can divert your attention and damage the presentation.

2. Talking excessively 

Keep in mind that a discussion, not a monologue, constitutes the ideal sales encounter. Top salespeople speak 43% of the time on average, which means that 57% of the session is spent with the prospect speaking. 

3. Starting the meeting with the incorrect topic 

The hardest item on the client meeting agenda is this… When should pricing be discussed? 

Pricing is usually saved for the end of the conversation by closers. It’s ideal to broach the subject as soon as you’ve covered your product or service and how it relates to your customer’s demands, unless your customer brings it up. 

4. Having trouble comprehending their goals 

Understanding the customer’s objectives is different from understanding their pain areas. 

For instance, there are many various reasons why a person could require a keyword research tool. A potential customer might want to boost the ranks of their website for inquiries with a business purpose or use their blog posts to rank for long-tail keywords. 

Once a salesperson is aware of the rationale behind a certain transaction, they will need to lead prospects through entirely new scenarios.

5. Disregarding a bad fit 

In the midst of a sales meeting, you’ll frequently learn that your proposed solution won’t address your prospect’s issues. According to surveys, at least 50% of your prospects are not a suitable fit for your product or service. 

Running a discovery call or a proper lead nurturing effort may typically prevent this problem. But if it hasn’t worked for some reason, you ought to be willing to admit it as soon as it arises. 

Even if you might be successful in selling to the incorrect clients, dealing with negative comments will put a lot of extra work on your customer service team. Not to add that they will probably churn quite soon. 

6. Addressing objections too quickly 

Nobody wants to hear a salesperson address their issues with pre-written responses. Everyone wants to be understood and given particular attention.

Top-performing salespeople pause after handling customer complaints 5 times longer than average reps do. 

7. Not addressing the subsequent stages 

Describe the actions you and your customer need to take after the meeting is about to finish. What is required to advance the project? It’s time to review and cross off the objectives you set during the preparation phase.

After-meeting session 

You still have two crucial actions to conduct as quickly as possible when the talk ends: 

  1. Analyse everything that transpired during the meeting

  2. Make a Follow-up

Post meeting analysis 

After the meeting, analyze the outcomes and pinpoint the areas that need improvement. Then, try to answer these questions:

  • Have you met your meeting’s goals?

  • Have you encountered a challenge that your prospects hadn’t yet raised?

  • What can you do right away to deal with the problems you encountered in the meeting?

  • How can you make your performance better?

You will have the opportunity to customize your follow-up in order to raise the possibility of conversion by responding to these questions. It’s also a good time to change your script in preparation for forthcoming sales calls with fresh leads.

Make a follow up 

Create a follow-up email after conducting a post-meeting analysis and discussing it with all parties involved. In an hour or two following the conversation, it is ideal to send this message. 

The conclusion of your sales meeting has a significant impact on the content of your follow-up email. It can be that you agreed to hand over some additional materials, obtain a discount code from your manager, or an updated quotation. 

Include a summary of the meeting with the next steps again highlighted in your email along with this information. 

Use a CRM system to strengthen your sales process.

Without a system that saves and processes all the prospect and customer data, none of these phases would be possible. 

The days of relying solely on your memory and written notes are long gone. 

A new client account needs to be created after your marketing department has produced a lead. Following that, their profile ought to be expanding with each engagement, whether it’s a lead downloading another lead magnet or attending a webinar. 

You need a CRM system for that! 

Once you have sales qualified leads (SQL), you can use your CRM system to store documents, schedule customer meetings, take notes during sales calls, gather statistics on email engagement, and monitor your progress with each prospect. 

Additionally, their CRM profile will keep all the information required for sustaining a wonderful experience and boosting retention once a consumer converts. 

 

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