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Getting the Appointment By Tom Richard


What are you doing now to try and set up an appointment with your prospect? Calling? Is that all? Guess what? Every other salesperson is doing the same thing. They’re trying to get the appointment that could be YOURS!

So, what are you going to do about it?

Stand out!

If you want the prospect to believe that you and your company are different, then you must prove it to them from the beginning! Your initial contact with them should show that you are creative, that you are persistent, and that your business is the better choice for them.

Calling your prospects is only one of the many resources you have for establishing contact with them and setting up the appointment.

Not only are you limiting yourself to one option, you’re also using the method that may leave the worst impression on your prospect. When you call, you are assuming that you are important enough for your prospect to stop whatever they are doing at that moment and talk to you so that you can try to sell them something.

How inconvenient and annoying is that? VERY.

So let’s use our imagination, shall we? Let’s think of some creative ways to get in front of your prospects and grab their attention. There are many obvious modes right in front of you, like snail mail, e-mail and faxes.

This doesn’t mean you should stop calling your prospects. It means that you should stop relying on this method to gain that appointment. Using a variety of mediums (like those mentioned above), and learning to match them with the right message, will get you through to your prospect and capture their attention.

Got guts?

Have the courage to try something fun and new with your prospects. Too scared? Think about it this way: if your boring method isn’t working with them now, don’t you think it’s time to try something new? You might as well have some fun with it, anyway.

Your level of comfort and unique style will help determine how risky you will allow yourself to be. If you’re not ready to take the full plunge, there are still ultra-safe solutions that bring remarkable results.

For example, create a customized document with creative business ideas and solutions that your client can use to become more productive or more profitable.

Sound strange?

Take a step back and look at the idea objectively. Your prospect will only buy from you if you can prove that your product and company will make them more productive and more profitable. So that should be the primary purpose of your contact.

A result-based document like this will be sure to stand out among the many brochures your prospect gets from other salespeople. It will be read. Even if your ideas stink, your prospect will notice and remember your name because your approach was different from others.

Important: Never send your client a brochure about your company. Nobody wants to read about how great you think you are. Prospects want to read about themselves and how they can improve to gain better results. They will consider you when you show them how you can fit into that equation.

(Don’t send brochures? Well, what else can I do? For more ideas, send a blank e-mail to appointment@tomrichard.com.)

Keep standing!

Some prospects, in an effort to be polite, may simply try to wait you out. They will ignore your voicemails and e-mails, and wait for you to get bored and go away.

You must have the longevity to remain pleasantly persistent with your prospects, or you may lose the appointment and the sale!

Being pleasantly persistent means that you are NEVER annoying or pushy (pleasant) and that you apparently will NEVER go away (persistent). When faced with this type of person, your prospect has only one logical option left, and that is to finally meet with you.

Make it personal

If you want to have pleasant contact with your prospect, you must establish a relationship that is personal. A call from a salesperson is a nuisance, but a call from a friend is always a pleasure.

Send your prospects personalized e-mails, or handwritten notes to set the tone for the transaction. Regardless of your company, your product, and the nature of your situation, you can still find ways to make your contact with your clients as personal as possible. Your effort to contact them in this manner will show them how important their business is to you. This sets the tone for your relationship, and this relationship sets the tone for the sale.

Focus, focus, focus

It’s too easy for prospects to wait out inexperienced and overzealous salespeople! The only thing separating you from your competition is your ability to decide that you are going to win. You will get the appointment with the prospect because you have the creativity to stand out and the determination to remain persistent!

Throughout this entire process, keep a clear objective in mind. See your transaction as a series of goals. Sure, you may want that appointment, but first you must work on getting your prospect to pick up the phone and call you, or finally take your call.

When you represent your good ideas creatively, personally, and persistently, you will not only get the appointment, you will get the SALE!
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Tom Richard is the author of a weekly ezine titled, Sales Muscle, as well as the book Smart Sales People Don’t Advertise: 10 Ways To Outsmart Your Competition With Guerilla Marketing. To view his works please visit http://www.tomrichard.com