The prospect process
In an executive Women's Breakfast program our firm hosted today featuring "The Chief Door Opener," Caryn Kopp, she reminded us all that when you are in a situation where you have the opportunity to meet a business owner for the first time, you need to beware of the Three Ps. These are: pre-think, prepare and practice. What Kopp means is that you need to pre-think by considering the company and the owner's potential needs, and then prepare possible questions that will be asked. At the same time you need to be ready with possible responses to any question so that you are well positioned to overcome objections. If you can make an educated guess regarding the road blocks that may be thrown your way, you can have your comeback ready.
For example, if a business owner says he or she is too busy to talk, or requests further information before meeting you (to buy time without committing), there are ways around those comments that can help you get a meeting scheduled. She suggests saying,"I am happy to send you our firm borchure, but it is not specifically tailored to your company's issues. How about I drop that off next Thursday at 10:00 and we can discuss how we can apply what we do to your unique circumstance."
This deflects the discussion and forces the prospect to focus on looking at the calendar to arrange a meeting for next Thursday and at the same time helps get passed the approach that says, 'I'll wait until I receive your materials before we can talk." This tactic reduces the time it takes to actually get in front of a business owner and does so in a painless and professional way.
So consider all the objections that might be raised, and prepare for them - practice your remarks and be ready for anything!
Sally Glick, CMO, Principal, Marketer of the Year in 2003 and AAM Hall of Famer in 2007, will lead a lively discussion of the constantly expanding roles of marketing and the professional marketers that drive this initiative in accounting firms of all sizes.