Being prepared for an initial client meeting or prospective client meeting is crucial. You have (usually) only one chance to make the right impression and be able to take the lead to the next step which is ultimately the sale. Here are some basic but important things to action and remember.
Research the business online by checking out their website. Understand the business as much as you can and learn as much as you can by their website. That way you won’t ask silly questions in the meeting, and might even subtly share your own knowledge of them by quoting a detail from their site. It shows you are interested enough in their business to make the effort.
Research the person you are meeting with. The person, whether a manager, owner of the business or senior employee will likely have an online presence. Google their name and see what comes up. They may well have a LinkedIn profile, or have published some articles. As much as knowing the business you’re talking about, know the person you are talking to.
Have your tools with you. As simple as having a business card (which is not scrunched up and dirty) or have your presentation setup is important. Please don’t overdo presentations by inundating the prospect with your data; sales meetings work so much better by asking questions and allowing the person to speak – not be lectured to.
Present appropriately. Even if you are turning up to quote for lawn mowing, you don’t have to come in with dog poop on your boots, or grass clippings all over your pants. Tidy up a little. If you are going corporate, then a decent, well sitting suit or pressed shirt or blouse is appropriate. Ladies, avoid excess and jangly jewellery, sexy outfits (unless you’re in that business) and guys, don’t forget a good deodorant. You may get a little nervous and don’t want sweat marks to show.
Finally, know your product or service inside and out and be prepared for the common questions. These might be questions like “why are you more expensive than your competitors?” or “why do I need this product?” Remember, often questions are going to be tough. Rarely will you be asked “are you the best product?” or “how can I buy it now?” Obviously know those answers, but really work on your responses to the tough questions.
All the best with your next new client meeting!
About Donna Stone
Donna Stone is a published author of the very popular “Stepping Stones Series” – a trilogy of books containing over 750 business tips, available via https://donna-stone.com.au. Also a speaker and consultant in the bookkeeping industry. She won “Networker of the Year” for 2010, 2011 and 2012. Check out Money GemStones.Connect with her thru Facebook, Linkedin, Google+ and Twitter. Watch videos here.