How to be successful in face-to-face sales meetings

Handing a prospect a stress ball can be an effective technique for relaxing them enough to hear your message.

By Wendy Dessler

If you’re going to be successful in a sales meeting, you’re going to need to be strategic. Don’t be underhanded, don’t be sneaky—but do consider human nature. Have you ever heard of archetypes? A circle is an archetype of a sphere, and a square is an archetype of a cube—if you will. This is an imperfect analogy, but it is communicative.

When it comes to branding, your brand needs to be archetypal to your business, but this isn’t quite enough. You want your marketing techniques to additionally have an archetypal quality that recommends working with your business. There’s a quality to such techniques that requires a strategic approach.

Consider oblique marketing techniques that facilitate subconscious knowledge of your business archetypally, like handing out free branded stress balls. If you’re interested in how they’re made, you can see it here; according to the video: “…stress balls may look like toys at first glance, but you’ve got to remember at the end of the day they’re actually powerful marketing tools.”

Powerful stress balls

Why are they so powerful? Well, subconsciously, when you give clients and potential clients a stress ball, you’re telling them that your products or services will help relieve their stress. Every time they squeeze that little plush figurine, animal, fruit, or what-have-you, their reduced stress is silhouetted in the brand you’ve put on that little comforting agent.

If they have a stressful enough position, and squeeze the stress ball enough, eventually they begin to associate diminished stress with your business, which powerfully communicates your value to them in an organic, natural, non-obtrusive and pleasant way.

The value of humor

It’s the same kind of thing as associating humor with an ad campaign. Have you seen a Geico commercial lately? They started in with comedy years ago and have doubled, tripled, and quadrupled their efforts in this regard ever since. When commercials have entertainment value in addition to information, they’re more fun to watch.

People want to have fun, and now they associate Geico with comedy. As a result, the organization increases its effectiveness and can offset some of the negative associations that naturally come with an insurance company. Incorporating fun into marketing conferences is a good strategy, and Geico proves it.

Think about it: if you’re filing an insurance claim, it’s likely not with smiles and giggles. But tangentially, Geico’s marketing campaign may actually diminish the process of service provision through elimination of negative emotional response. This is true in the realm of claims, and in the realm of sales—it’s an all-encompassing positive.

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You want to apply techniques like this to sales meetings that take place in a face-to-face way. With SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, a successful campaign requires properly predicting what your target market will be searching for. With a face-to-face meeting, you want to make the same kinds of predictions.

For example, if you’re bulling your way into a sales meeting while your target buyer is in the middle of his or her regular work day, then you can assume they won’t be paying attention to you or your sales pitch as much as they could if they weren’t busy with a thousand other things.

The problem is, a fine dinner may not always be possible for a prospect. So what you may do is facilitate a more reasoned sales meeting by providing some good or service that makes the work day easier.

Imagine shipping a box of complimentary stress balls with your logo to a potential client’s office. If you provide a service that would diminish the hassle of lower-level employees, they may lay the groundwork for you that leads to a face-to-face meeting specifically silhouetting the products or services your business provides.

Know your client

When you’re in the meeting you should know your client well enough to directly, succinctly, and accurately sell the value of your company to them. If they’re managing a warehouse and you’re selling IoT (Internet of Things) services, you might point to some machines and quote some numbers that indicate the likelihood of cost reduction.

Remember: honesty is king. You want to be straightforward, you want to be open, and you want to be reliable. Honesty communicates value. So have such character in face- to-ace meetings, and you’ll have an expanded likelihood of success.

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Wendy Dessler is a super-connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.


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