Everything I read, every conversation I have with sellers; the same issue arises. “How do we get customers to respond, how do we get meetings with customers?”
I’ve been reflecting on this issue for some time. I’ve finally come up with the solution. It’s a slam dunk guarantee–ignore the gimmicks and tricks all the experts and guru’s offer. I’m offering this up freely.
Drum roll please…….
Yes, the tension is building, I know some of you have leapt forward in this article to get the answer.
OK, here it is:
We will be able to get the majority of customers to respond and meet with us, if we do this one thing:
For every meeting we pay them $1000 for the meeting. Don’t try to do the “cheap alternative,” pay the customer a flat $1000 for the meeting. Don’t screw around with Starbuck’s cards or any similar offer, go for the $1000!
That’s it, pay our customers for their time.
Some companies might have problems with paying their people for meetings. There are a variety of solutions to this. We can pay it to the company rather than individuals. If you think of it, this can be an important source of revenue for companies, imagine what they can earn from all the sellers that want to meet with their people.
Alternatively, donate it to their favorite charity. We can help do something good (not to mention our CFOs can take the charitable deduction.).
With the exception of some of the highest level executives, $1000 more than covers the time they invest in the meeting.
Now, I know you are thinking, “How can we possibly afford this?” Some of you might be thinking, “Well we can bury that in the pricing, after all the cost of selling is part of our pricing, so this is an additional cost of selling.” (As you will see later, this will actually be unnecessary.)
But as you reflect, while the customers might appreciate the massive income they would generate from meeting with sales people, there’s a much greater impact with this strategy.
We, sellers, would have to make every meeting count!
We couldn’t afford spending $1K for each customer meeting, if we aren’t producing tremendous results with each meeting.
What would this mean?
Well, we would have to be reaching out to the right customers–not just anyone on a list, but we would have to make sure we are contacting the organizations and people that are more likely to have an interest in our solutions.
We’d also have to be very knowledgeable about them, organizationally and individually. We’d have to do our research, we’d have to have a deep understanding of what they are facing and how we might be able to help them. We wouldn’t want to waste our $1K on meetings with the wrong people, so we would narrow our focus to our ICP.
To make the meeting count, we would have to be prepared to talk about what the customer wants to talk about. Again, if we can’t engage the customer, if we can’t capture their attention, we would be wasting our $1K.
We would do this not just for our prospecting calls, but for every meeting through the customer decision. To be able to justify this spending, we have to make every meeting count. We wouldn’t waste our time or the customers on things that don’t move us forward. We would design meetings that accomplish more–resulting in fewer meetings needed to help the customer reach a decision. That shortens our selling cycle and uses the customer time much more effectively.
We would find ourselves chasing much fewer opportunities–but the right ones. Our win rates will skyrocket. This increase in productivity would probably offset the cost of the $1K per meeting.
Our customers would be much happier and much more engaged, not just because they are getting the $1K, but because we are using their time so much better. We aren’t wasting their time, we will actually be creating value far beyond the $1K.
The customer will probably be equipped to make a better quality decision. The only alternatives they would be considering are those that are, also, investing $1K in each meeting. So they wouldn’t waste their time on meetings that don’t help them make better decisions.
That’s it, that’s the magic solution, for each meeting with your customer, pay them or their companies or their favorite charities $1K for the meeting. Your results and your ability to connect with customers in a meaningful way will skyrocket.
I know some of you are thinking, maybe we should do this with our prospecting, what if we paid each customer $100 to open our emails, or $250 for a conversation. These are possible extensions, but let’s keep it simple. Focus on getting high impact meetings that produce results for the customer and you. Stick to the $1K per meeting.