7 Crucial Tips for Appointment Setting
One of the crucial parts of business development is appointment setting. In almost any type of business, no sales are likely to take place if there is no initiative from the sales side to talk directly to the prospect.
It calls for a lot of patience and also effort just to come into contact with your prospects as identifying new accounts and fixing appointments with them is one of the toughest jobs of a seller. If by chance someone answers the phone, this is the one and only opportunity which on no account would you like to miss.
To maximize your chances of highest number of appointment settings, try following the below-mentioned tips:
Try reaching the business leaders during off hours
Talking to the right person at the senior level helps to speed up the sales process. But before approaching them, you have to understand that business leaders do not punch in during the regular office hours of 9 to 5. Try reaching them before 8 in the morning or during lunch hours or even late in the evening. You can even try sending emails at these hours. This strategy when adopted definitely helps to get a proper response from the prospect.
Make the most of multimedia to open the channel of communication
Communication does not necessarily imply only phone calls and sales speech. It goes much beyond that. It is very tough is to get a prospect on call and that too at the earliest as many of prospects are busier most of the time. It requires at least a dozen calls to be made to make a prospect respond to you. Ensuring that no stone is left unturned by approaching the prospect many a time is very important. For this, using the different tools of multimedia such as emails, voice mails or sending a hand written note always helps. You might end up making a break -through but whether you will do it at the first attempt is a million dollar question.
Take a cue from the marketing’s lead
Try contacting those prospects who had interaction with your company’s brand in one way or the other. By doing so, you strike a greater chance of setting appointments with them. The list of such prospects can be obtained from website downloaders, website visitors or even from the list of event attendees.
Try getting referrals
Referrals are like hitting jackpot. Obtaining a second line of link based on your existing network is the best way to leverage referrals. The trust your prospect feels for the referral gets directly passed on to you. This becomes the biggest advantage for you as the prospects feel more comfortable talking to you. This also provides you with a better opportunity to speak to your prospect at a greater length and convert him due to the pre-existing faith he has in you. The right way to get referrals is by contacting the executive assistants of top level executives of companies. They act as the key source in providing the information you require along with guiding in the right direction. You never know, they might even provide you with a referral.
Be specific when fixing a meeting
The biggest mistake made by many sales representatives is being specific when fixing a meeting. They do it only when the prospects enquire about the purpose of the call. Instead of asking when would you like to have the meeting? Ask, I have time on so and so date at this time, can we meet? By being specific, you end up sending the right kind of signal as no one has time these days. Also, majority of prospects appreciate this kind of approach nowadays.
Talk less and adopt active listening
One of the qualities that distinguish quality appointment setters from the rest is their willingness to listen. With a well-drafted script in hand, one can only do a better job of cold calling but cannot compete with the power of active listening. By active listening we mean, moulding the words you utter including your behaviour in the direction of what you hear.
Never forget customer is the king
Always remember that the customer is king and your job as an appointment setter is only to help the consumer. If you start believing this, your customer too will follow suit. Prospects are shrewd enough to gauge the purpose of your call and if they get a feeling that you are not being genuine, they will resist every attempt of yours to fix a meeting. Hence, the first few moments of a call is very crucial to gain the trust of a consumer. This can be done by exhibiting a service oriented approach while making the call.
Last but not the least, you have to think about the long term impact your call is likely to make in the minds of the prospect. Rather than focussing on how the scheduled meeting took place, focus on the quality of conversation between you and your consumer. Try to make the ever-lasting impact on your consumer that will make him come back to you again whenever he feels a need. This is the secret to appointment setting.
Fixing appointments with prospects is not only hard work but also requires persistence. But armed with the above tips, you can qualify for better opportunities.