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How To Get The Appointment

August 04, 2021 8:31 AM | John Russell (Administrator)

MABC August 12th, 2021 Program

HOW TO GET THE APPOINTMENT

There’s 3 main considerations to begin the process to get the appointment with the decision maker.

  • 1.      Prequalify through research to establish an understanding of the client situation and problem you can solve.
  • 2.      Open the relationship and begin to establish trust with the gatekeeper and the decision maker.
  • 3.     Earn the opportunity to set up an executive briefing where you can ask preliminary questions to determine if there’s a natural fit between your prospects business opportunity and your consulting specialty.

Answer your own pre-qualifying questions:

Does this prospect have problems that my consulting can solve?

Is this company in a growth pattern?

Are there multiple locations in my territory?

Is this a market leader or prestige client who will help me sell others in the category?

Are they doing business with other consultants?

Can I reach the ultimate decision maker?

Is this prospect business cost-effective to pursue?

Do I have a referral?

Is there a chance for a long term relationship?

Do your research.

Can you find someone who can introduce you or that you can reference as a referral?

Learn about the person who is the economic buyer.  Start at the top and work down.

Get to know and build a relationship with the gatekeeper to the decision maker.

Confirm who the decision maker is.  It can change.

Send letter #1:  The first letter of introduction about you, your company, your purpose and who you help.

Include why you’re contacting them? 

What’s your purpose for the letter?  Why are you interested in speaking with me?

What’s your reason for contacting the company?

What are you hoping to communicate?

What problem does your service solve?

How is your solution different than the others?

What’s the benefit to meeting with you?

What is your prospects company passionate about?

What are your prospects competitors doing to solve the same problem?

Send letter #2(within 3 days of letter #1): Noting a recent article about the prospects company, their competitor or their industry.  Demonstrate you have insight into the prospects issues.

Send letter #3(within 3 days of letter #2): Note a recent story about a triggering event in the industry that could have implications for your prospects company, which you determined through your pre-meeting research.

Send letter #4(within 3 days of letter #3): Research your prospects customer.  Demonstrate you are a critical thinker in touch with their industry, company and challenges.

Prepare your follow up voice mail scripts. Call after each letter politely to ask if they’ve received it and if you can meet with them for 15 minutes to exchange information to see if their might be a fit between your two companies.  Your only goal is to get the meeting, not to sell.  It’s not about you at this point.

Don’t email.

Can you physically walk into the business to meet just the gatekeeper?

“GOOD MORNING SUSAN, MY NAME IS JOHN RUSSELL.  IS MARY JONES THE PERSON I SHOULD SPEAK WITH ABOUT SALES TRAINING?  I WOULD LIKE TO SCHEDULE A SHORT MEETING WITH HER.  CAN YOU SHARE WITH ME THE BEST TIME TO REACH MARY DURING THE WEEK?

MY PLAN IS TO FOLLOW UP WITH A LETTER OF INTRODUCTION.  SHOULD I SEND IT TO THIS OFFICE?

I’LL BE SENDING OUT MY LETTER OF INTRODUCTION ON FRIDAY.  THEN I’LL FOLLOW UP WITH A PHONE CALL AFTER THAT TO ASK IF I CAN SCHEDULE A SHORT MEETING WITH MARY TO INTRODUCE MYSELF.

From Jill Konrath – Selling To Big Companies
Getting meetings with C-level execs or their senior designate isn’t hard. In fact, it’s often much, much quicker to get an appointment with (or referral from) the CEO than getting a meeting with a mid-ranking exec who is vested in the status quo. This applies in all B2B sales – even if the CEO isn’t the main buyer for the product, service, or solution you sell.

#1: Make sure your value proposition focuses on the outcomes and impact your client can expect – and that other clients get – because of working with you. Rather than saying, “We help companies to…” (which is how most value props start, and why they sound the same) demonstrate immediate credibility and social proof by saying, “Clients like ABC and XYZ say they get (results/outcome/impact) because they choose to work with [name of your company].” “Choose to work with [name of your company]” is actually an embedded suggestion that pre-conditions your potential customer to choose to work with you.

#2: Go high! Once your messaging is more client focused, just switching your attention on getting meetings with more senior executives will mean you get meetings with more senior executives – as senior executives are always on the lookout for new initiatives that will accelerate time to market, increase revenue, decrease costs, improve efficiencies, and more. They’re wired that way. And research shows they appreciate salespeople who bring new ideas to them. 

#3: Write several different opening scripts.  Try each repeatedly and identify which emails/letters that generate the most meetings. Tweak them to appeal to senior execs’ motivations.

9 Tips to Get Prospects to Call You Back

  • 1.     Get down to business right away.
  • 2.     Reference any referrals up front and state your referrals name.
  • 3.     Show you’ve done your homework and prepared for the meeting.
  • 4.     Mention a recent newsworthy event related to your prospects industry or business.
  • 5.     Can you share a strong value proposition?
  • 6.     Share a fresh perspective.
  • 7.     Eliminate any self-serving language.
  • 8.     Sound like a trusted partner.
  • 9.     Use a series of scripts for voice mails.

One you get the appointment, prepare, send and follow up with a pre-meeting agenda.

When you confirm your meeting via phone say, “In preparation for this meeting, I’ve sent you a pre-meeting agenda. Is there anything you’d like to add to the agenda or questions you have that we can prepare for in advance?” 

This demonstrates that the meeting time will be used efficiently and will be focused on the prospects situation.


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