You walk away from your meeting believing you nailed the presentation. All the signals were there, you were CERTAIN you just left the meeting from your newest client. In the following days, you send them all the requested documents, button up the most beautiful proposal, and ship it off. You call, email, text and all is you hear back is crickets. Yup, ghosted. That hopeful new client of yours is no longer responding to your calls or emails. You sit at your desk perplexed, how could they’ve been so interested and ignoring you today?
Nutshell of what happened, the prospect got distracted. Anything could’ve happened in the moments after you left the room, a major client issue, a drop in anticipated sales, a catastrophic event that changed their ability to have any of the additional funds to afford your services. On the flip side, nothing may have happened whatsoever. The allure of your service lost it’s shimmer. So what do you do, just walk away? It’s what most of us do, because that is the least painful way to avoid the rejection.
This is what I call the “Pause Factor”. It’s simply the period of time between the meeting and when the real opportunity presents itself. As I tell my kids, dry your eyes and turn up the heat. If you work the pause factor, you will come out victorious in the close.
So how is it done?
Start by doing your homework before the initial meeting. Educate yourself as much as possible on your prospective client’s technology, business model and/or product portfolio. Then enter your first engagement as a deep dive on their needs by asking informed questions out of the gate. Ask for information on their current state and their long- and short-term goals. Ensure you understand their Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), their biggest marketplace challenges, their unique value proposition, and the competitive landscape. Drill down into specifics, such as:
- Have they attempted to implement change in the past?
- If so, what were the results?
- What are the risks if change/growth plans are not successfully implemented?
Once you’ve established a robust baseline understanding, document it. Put it in your CRM, excel sheet, Trello board, or notebook. You need to remember all the intimate details to survive the pause factor. When they go quiet is the moment to use all the information you uncovered during your introductory meeting:
- Reflect your understanding of their needs.
- Show your unique ability to provide a solution.
- Deliver value-added content.
Value is the driving message. The more value you can present, when they do not have a purchase order for you, the greater the bond you establish with them. Persistence and consistency is the key. Use social selling techniques, and never, ever go away. Your genuine likability and the attention to their needs will have you coming out victorious.
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