I would like to continue topic of Expert Sales. See previous post – “Expert sales: part I – assessment“.
It covered decision making model when launching expert sales. But how to get there? How to retrieve those answers from your client?
Let’s make first very first step – first talk or meeting with your customer. Dealing with front-line requests you never know who is calling you/who is at your door, so need to act prepared in order not to miss your chance.
Let me take an example…
Imagine you have your phone ringing and a nice female (or male, your choice) voice asks for your service. What would you do? What questions would you ask? What and how will you tell/offer? What would be your next steps? What impression will you make?
First of all: make sure person who is speaking with newly called customer is qualified enough to start assessment. If not, leave clear instructions how he/she should act and what to tell/not to tell if such a person is unavailable at the moment.
I usually leave clear instructions if call reaches receptionist and no one from sales guys is available:
- Register person’s name, position, contact phone, e-mail;
- Ask how he/she learned about us?
- Ask to describe what service he/she is looking for?
- Ask what company he/she represents?
- Agree for suitable callback time of sales person.
Be cautious and NEVER at this point:
- Give any estimations on time, budjet, etc (even if person insists);
- Start “selling” yourself or your services/pushing/advertising;
- Say NO (after a while you may establish clear rules when you allow your front-line guy to say NO to assess already at this step);
Benefit applying such an approach is that that your sales guy will have time to prepare and gather information before the call, that could be:
- Surf client’s webpage/Google about company, their services and business;
- Analyze initial request and perform first step assessment if possible;
- Prepare questions you would ask to assess further;
- Obtain information about possible competitors of potential client;
- Obtain information about person you prepare to call to;
- Call back when ready and as agreed;
And finally, remember: you never get a second chance to make a first impression!
And whoever plays in your front line he/she makes that impression.
To be continued…