Date: On Demand (access any time)
Investment: $285 per person
(Discounts for multiple participants)
INCLUDES: One-on-One Telephone Coaching
The truth of the matter is that appointment setting and lead generation are two extremely important activities for any salesperson. Even if you are fabulous at closing the sale or at giving presentations, none of that will matter if you have no one to pitch to.
Building and maintaining this sales pipeline is often a constant challenge for most salespeople, since most salespeople love the thrill of the chase and hate the chore of setting up appointments and generating leads.
It is imperative to understand that as a salesperson this activity alone can set you apart from the rest. Since most salespeople do not spend time setting up appointments, making this activity a part of your weekly to do list will give you an edge over your counterparts.
Most of us find it easier to schedule a follow up activity with a prospect we have already met with than to schedule an appointment with someone we have never spoken with before. Don’t worry, like with most things that seem uncomfortable it gets easier the more you do it. Once you pick up that phone and schedule the first 10 or 12 appointments, the rest will be a breeze.
If you think about an appointment as the first step towards closing the sale, it will be easier for you to motivate and encourage yourself to do what needs to be done.
In this podcast we will talk about:
- How to make appointment setting a weekly discipline
- How much time to spend blocking appointments
- When is the best time to call a prospective customer
- How to write a catchy email or card to catch your customer’s attention
- When to meet your best prospects and when to meet your not so important ones.
1.Make appointment setting a weekly discipline
When you prepare your weekly do to list. Remember to spend some time writing down: how much time do you want to spend this week on setting appointments, how many appointments do you want to schedule this week, and which days are you going to do this on?
Don’t wait to run out of prospects to call to set up appointments, make appointment setting a weekly discipline and you will always have a steady pipeline of prospects to meet with.
This will ensure that you don’t spend the last few days of the month stressed out and struggling to meet your sales targets, instead you will have the entire month to focus on achieving and exceeding your sales goals.
2. Set appointments in one hour blocks
Don’t keep appointment setting for ‘whenever you have a few minutes’. Schedule it on your to-do list as a major activity for the day. It’s best to spend time in one hour blocks setting appointments.
There are a few reasons for this – an hour gives you time to find your feet and get comfortable calling strangers, or you may need to call some prospects back and this normally fits into a one hour time frame. Spending just one or two hours a day – one to two times a week, fixing appointments can generate enough prospects for the week ahead.
3. Understand the best time to call a prospective customer on the telephone
The best day to call people is on a Thursday, the worst day is on a Friday and the rest of the days are somewhere in between these two. When calling your prospect the best hours are early morning between 8 and 9 am and late afternoon between 4 and 5 pm. The worst time to call is right after lunch. You are 164% more likely to be able to schedule an appointment with a customer if you call during 8 and 9 than if you call between 1 and 2 pm. Based on this research the best day for you to set appointments is for 2 hours on Thursday and maybe 2 hours on any other day which is a lighter day for you in terms of meetings and presentations.
4. What to do if your prospect is busy?
If your prospect is busy, try writing a catchy e-mail or sending a card (with something special inside). The telephone is not the only way to set up an appointment with a customer. A short catchy email with telling the prospect a bit about your product and asking them to get in touch with you is a great way to reach out to customers who are too busy to connect with you on the phone.
Another great way to reach out to prospects is to send a short handwritten note asking them to get in touch with you. You can even spend some time designing your own catchy card or postcard which you can then send out to prospects. The key here is to write something personalised and not generic which will make your customers call you back.
5. When to meet prospects?
Meet your best prospects in the late morning, and you less important prospects in the late afternoon. The best time to meet your prospects is when you are still fresh and have woken up a bit during the later half of the morning.
Late morning works for both you and your prospects because it gives both of you time to clear some work out of the way. Your prospects are not worried about their to-do lists or meetings that they need to attend and can give you their full attention. Since this is before lunch they are also wide awake and energetic and in the best frame of mind to make a buying decision.
Schedule to meet with your BEST prospects at this time.
Late afternoon is when your energy levels may be dropping and your prospects will also be tired and waiting to head home. This is a good time to schedule meetings with your less important prospects or the one’s that may or may not close. This way you give your best self to your prospects with whom you have the best chance of closing with and your not so best self to prospects who are uncertain at best.