There are a few things you need to do and consider to prepare for your first face to face meeting:
- Vet and capture what you want to accomplish during the meeting.
- Anticipate potential concerns from the client.
- Check and recheck to make sure you are completely prepared.
- During the call/meeting, listen more than you talk.
- Bring applicable support staff with you.
- Use and respect the prospects’ format.
- Always follow through with your to-do’s.
- Ask for what you need and seal the deal.
- Take the angle to simplify your prospects’ life.
- Find ways to boost your credibility.
- Build and nurture relationships following the meeting.
- Remember what you have learned from being told “no” in the past. Remember what didn’t work so you know how to anticipate the various paths the conversation can go.
These are all important things to do both before and during your presentation. With confidence behind your company and product you will close the deal. The next step of the process is negotiation. This can seem a little intimidating but with a few tips and tricks, this can all become natural to you.
Here are some tips to help you negotiate successfully:
- Build a pricing strategy and stick with it. Don’t fall into the trap of discounting to get the business.
- Prioritize what you plan to offer. This should include what really matters to you and what you are willing to accommodate.
- Don’t give in too quickly.
- Negotiate with a person, not a “company”. Don’t let their answer be that “they would like to, but can’t”.
- Don’t sell yourself short.
- Mitigate your pricing. If you go too low you won’t be able to raise it back up. And you need to make a profit.
- Don’t sacrifice quality for the deal.
- Remember–Your services should always count as costs.
- Boost margins with add-ons.
- Handle request for proposals with the utmost care.
These are the ways you make sure that both parties are getting the best possible returns from the partnership. Once you start meeting or working together, it’s important to continue to build your relationship so that that the prospect’s representative becomes an ally for you and your company.
Let’s define this point-of-contact:
We like to call this person a champion. They are an end-user voice for your company and can bring a stronger, brighter future to your company. Here are the characteristics of a great champion:
- They are respected by supervisors.
- They are socially networked.
- They think in the best interests of their company’s long-term vision.
- They are able to quickly navigate through the company to get things done.
- They are willing to give credit to another person.
- They share the same business philosophy, values and vision as you.
Now, that you know how to negotiate for what is best for both parties and build on relationships, we’re going to talk about how to use your new client’s position to the best of your benefit.
If you need help with any aspects of the negotiation process, try our GUIDED TOUR to get access to a wealth of great tools and resources to help you be successful.