Making Appointments That Stick!

Peady’s Selling Engagement sponsored by IRD Prospector

Welcome to this week’s post on sales and selling success.

A meeting with the decision maker is a key stage of the sales process. You can’t sell anything, anything at all until you make an appointment and either meet face to face or over the phone with the right person, the person who can say “yes”!

Until the meeting takes place the sales process stalls.

Many salespeople can’t make appointments that stick!

Comments such as: 
“The decision maker isn’t available”
“They won’t return my calls””
“He didn’t show up at the meeting”
 “She’s too busy” 
“I can’t get an appointment”

All are examples of poor appointment setting techniques and are excuses, not reasons.

If all you have to discuss with a potential customer (or client) is your product or service it will be extremely difficult to secure appointments and make them stick. And if your current appointment setting process involves phrases such as “saving money”; “dropping off some information” or “a quick catch-up” you too will have the same difficulty.

Truth is, the most common salesperson mistake is trying to sell your product during the initial call.

How do you get an appointment?

Making appointments that actually stick requires you to find a really compelling reason for the decision maker to meet or talk with you. The compelling reason needs to be all about them and their business, not you and your product or service. The WIIFM factor is huge!

But what is a compelling reason? How do you engage?

Ask them questions about their business, how do they feel about increased sales or more website traffic? Is an increase in the number of phone calls they receive important? How about their salespeople do they want more leads? How about their current customers, do they need brand reinforcement?

Until you do your research on the potential customer and find their compelling reason the appointment setting process will be painful and mostly ineffective. 

Setting appointments takes hard work and persistence. You’re still going to hear no’s but if you follow these tips, you’ll increase your odds of getting through and securing a meeting.

Until next week, good appointment setting!

About the author 

Stephen Pead is a media industry veteran of 30 years with significant experience in direct sales, sales management and general management. He is based in Sydney and specialises in helping SME’s market their businesses more effectively and providing training for salespeople and sales managers.

He can be contacted at [email protected]