Not a Sales Pitch – but a conversation that sells!

A sales pitch – will be batted back to you or ducked to avoid and people are very wary of these types of conversations (think how you feel when you get someone on the phone or via e-mail like this?)

Think about your conversation as a dialogue – not a monologue.

Stage 1 – Before you speak to them

  • How did they come to you as a contact – directly or indirectly – referral, introduction, networking. In other words do they know you as you have met them or will the first part of any conversation be spent getting them to remember you or the person that has introduced you to them. Make an impression the first time you meet – be different, let them speak and ask them about themselves and their business. Aim to get at least one piece of personal information about them that you can refer to when you next speak.

Stage 2 – once you have set up a meeting with them – inform yourself

  • Get to know everything you can about the company and how it operates
  • Find out what sort of person your contact is – how they do business, how ethical in business are they (and would you want to do business with them if they aren’t?)
  • Research and knowledge is key

Stage 3 – the meeting

  • Set yourself an objective – what do you want to come out of the meeting eg at the end of the visit I would like them to have promised to talk to their MD about my company/arranged another meeting with Head of Marketing
  • Create a link with what they might want and what you can offer
  • Listen and understand what they need (and this is not always what they say they need) – look out for non-verbal signals that mean something different to what they are saying

Stage 4 – follow-up

  • Always follow-up the meeting with a thank-you e-mail with key points that you have agreed with them
  • Keep in touch and remember it can take time for the process of starting to do business with a company
  • Be patient and always give something away to them when you follow-up – eg did you know ….

 Stage 5 – commitment

  • Gain a commitment from them even it’s a no thank you but keep them on file especially if it is someone you really want to do business with
  • Give them a commitment and stick to it – be reliable, helpful and make yourself an expert for them – make them feel that they need you

Points to remember about your conversations:

  • Keep to the 80/20 rule ie you talk for 20 and listen for 80%
  • Sell value and benefits (to them) not functions and try to quantify this eg as a result of my involvement in your company you will save around 15% on your staffing resources and bought out costs
  • Language – make sure that you talk the same language and repeat things back to them that they have said to you – they cant argue if they have said it
  • Research, rehearse, review

Contact us to arrange a free business health check or to find out about our business resources that can help to develop and grow your business

HMRC Business Support Helpline on 0300 456 3565 or e-mail their helpline

Posted on 6th April 2018
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