When presenting to a prospect, how many times have you not really known much about his business or not really known what you’re going to say or what road you’re going to take the prospect down?
This is a huge error salespeople make far too often.
I know because I’ve been there. I used to wing it. Winging it is not the way to go. Basically, you are saying to the customer that you are a clueless fool because you didn’t prepare well enough. Preparation is the key to success.
Preparation is the exact opposite of winging it. Winging your presentation is a fast track to failure. It shows the client that he is not important enough for you to prepare properly for the meeting. You need to invest enough time to prepare for each sales call you make and each presentation you give.
You can use checklists, worksheets, or whatever you need to be able to present to that prospect in a way that shows you already know some of the issues and challenges he has.
Then you can go into the meeting and help solve the prospect’s problems. Even if it’s an exploratory meeting, you can perform a lot of research up front to learn more about the company.
You can conduct research by interviewing employees or checking out websites. Search engines, such as Google, are great because they will provide you with plenty of potentially beneficial websites. You can do a lot of preparation up front and gather information that’s going to prove to the customer you’re knowledgeable and well-prepared.
You’ll have the customers saying, “You know what? This guy does care about me, and he wants my business. Let’s sit down, talk to him, and figure things out. Let’s see if he can solve my problems.” That’s the perception you want to leave with the client.
By John Barney