Wanna master the art of WINNING a BIG-SHOT customer in the first meeting ?… read out this entire post carefully… ( this technique is followed by nearly all the TOP Salesmen in the world )
First lets define a few fictional characters ( for the ease of understanding )
* He is your Target Customer ( lets call him BEN ) . BEN runs a Software Products company. He has automation products for Hospitals, Schools, Hotels etc. He has 30 developers in office and 20 sales people on field :
This is YOU ( yeah… an aggressive Entrepreneur ) :
and for example your product is FreshIM– a LiveChat Mobile app for Enterprise ( ie. A Whatsapp like app for all employees inside a company to communicate and share files effectively )
Now, how can you impress BEN and close a sale on the first meet ?
Ingredients required for this recipe :
– 1 Month of time ( Maybe more if your target customer is a real BIG SHOT )
– 3 Friends ( Lets call them Jack, Blake, Jane )
– A nice huge car sticker for your Brand .
– $100 in cash .
– Its always good to choose your first customer before even planning on your startup idea . Like how an eagle sets its eyes on the prey – your mission from day 1, will be to get that customer hooked to your startup .
– When choosing that first customer, choose the one who is worth the shot. Can be a tough nut to crack – but make sure he has deep pockets so you can milk him for long, for the awesome product or service you are gonna provide .
– Make sure that first customer you are fixing your eyes on, really needs the solution you have. In this way, all you need to work on is – just making him believe that yours is the best solution he can get . Believe me, even if your competitor are Apple or Microsoft …. you can always showcase an angle of your product that no-one else in the world addresses ( it can even be as simple as the fact, that your office is reachable on road for him -or- he can directly speak to the CEO of the company, if there is any issue etc. )
ok Lets START !
Week 1 :
Aim : To get to know every minute detail about BEN ( the target customer ).
– Make a detailed study about BEN . Take time to understand who he is, what his regular watering hole is, What news paper he reads, His Facebook ID, LinkedIn ID, Twitter ID, Email ID, Home address, Office address.
– It dosent hurt to get to know what his favorite drink is.
– Somehow get to know his mobile number .
– Get to know the time he leaves to office and the time he reaches office / leaves office etc.
Note : Sometimes it may require 10 hours per day in the first week to get all these details . Spend the time without fuss – as it is gonna get you a customer who is gonna regularly pay you month on month a few hundred $$ . And yes – he is gonna be the gateway to all his high profile contacts ( who are all again gonna pay you serious cheddar every month )
– Meanwhile you try to make atleast 3 friends from BEN’s online network in LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter ( I prefer Facebook … all you need to do is send them a Friend request by introducing yourself . If you send out 10 … 2 may accept ) . Start to engage in regular online conversations with these 2 people . Like their updates. Find a chance to chat with them if possible etc.
– On the weekend try to attend some event they attend ( maybe a hackathon, conference, Meetup etc. ) Get yourself introduced and tell them about your product. Get their contact number. Dont forget to ask what they do. If they are into business – give them some leads ( at-least pretend that you are willing to help ) .
Note : Business is all about obligation. If you are able to do some kind of help for any one of BEN’s friend’s – he will be obligated to do you something in return ( which you can take advantage of )
Important : You are not even showing your face to BEN in Week 1 . All the above happens in a very subtle manner .
Week 2 :
Aim : Make BEN hear about your brand at-least 7 times .
– Via. the above information collecting activity, you for sure know what time BEN comes to office and leaves office. Now is the time for your friends Jack & Blake to play . When BEN is waiting for the Elevator… Jack and Blake stand beside him and have a casual conversation ( they also enter the elevator and get out along with him – the conversation going on all the while ) . Here is what they say :
Jack : Finally the manager has approved to make things easy . SMS’ing & mailing back and forth on the field was a real pain. Now we have this internal messaging system setup. Things are really smooth.
Blake : What !? they have gone for Microsoft Lync ? Man thats a costly decision man – didnt know that !
Jack : Microsoft Lync ? No way …that is damn costly dude – each license costs $250 ! and it does not work on Android & Iphones man. We have gone with this company called FRESH IM . It seems new – but it works like a charm. Am able to get information, then and there from the tech team. Has really helped me close more sales last week .
Blake : Oh cool . Does it have all the features of Whatsapp ?
Jack : Yeah it has. See here ( pulls out his Nexus and opens the app ) .
Blake : ohkay …. So now you can share upcoming product screen shots as well instantly . We can show stuff in realtime to potential customers. Sweet ! Where is this company present ?
Jack : Dunno man. Heard it is present in this city only. Those guys came in person and gave a coaching on how to use it last week .
Blake : FRESH IM huh …. hhhmmm ok good . Been on a leave for a week …good to know our Boss is using latest tech apps to make our life easy
– Join the FACEBOOK groups in which BEN is present. Since you know his interest, you can easily figure out which group he follows and in which he is most active. Ask Jane to put a question in the group, ” Need suggestions on a good and economical LIVE CHAT app to use for employees within my office. Basically for communicating official stuff, For onsite guys to get instant updates on questions etc. ”
Let there be a reply for the question- suggesting FRESH IM ( explaining in a nutshell the features and the killer price ). Make Jane like it – this will reach BEN ….
– Give a FREE trial of your product to one of BENs friend’s ( who is technically now your friend as well – since last week ) . Request him to Share his opinion about the product on his wall ( which will reach BEN for sure )
– Put a post about the product in your wall ( Target the message to address BEN’s business model ) Eg :
” Running a Software Products company ? Help your on field sales people to get more sales !
LiveChat Mobile app by FRESH IM – a smart way to connect Sales staff & Tech staff ”
Pay $5 to Facebook and promote it to your Freinds & Friends-Friends list . Ask your new mutual friend to like the post and comment on it . If done, it will 100% be read by BEN on his wall !
– Ask Jane to call BEN like a sales girl from some mobile company ( Eg : Samsung ) . Ask her to promote a new upcoming smart phone model . She should include the words ” Sir, moreover this incredible mobile phone comes with the happening FRESH IM enterprise communication app integrated … It eases the communication between everyone in your team . They can share files on-the-go using this awesome app ….”
– There are many software DEALs & COUPON sites in the WEB . Put a deal of 20% off you product in one of those . Ask you friend Blake to send out a beautiful marketing mail to BEN’s official and personal ID, show casing the deal page on the site . Let the subject be ” Running a PRODUCT company ? This offer is for YOU ! ” …. and speak about a different feature in your product Eg : FRESH IM increases FUN at work . Get’s your employees share Birthday celebration pics on Social Media thus increasing your brand awareness via. your employees !
Note : We make BEN hear about your brand name atleast 7 times, because it is a science that any brand name needs to be heard of 7 times before one recognizes a brand by seeing it ( The reason TV ADs are sold in units of 7 packs to brands ) .
So this entire week, re-inforces the Brand name FRESH IM repeatedly to BEN . By now he will have a feel that there is something called as FRESH IM and it is loved by Many, It is something that is for people in his line of Business and that It increases sales & It is cool .
Important : Even now, you wont show your face to BEN ! All the above happens in a very subtle manner .
Week 3 :
Aim : Make BEN see visuals about your brand at-least 3 times .
– Reach the Paper boy who supplies News Paper to BEN’s house everyday . Pay him money to have your AD brochure inserted into the paper . Make the Brochure colorful and specifically addressed to increase the sales for Software product companies. Insert the Ad brochure 3 times this week, on alternate days ( So he sees it atleast once )
– Get your friend Jake to paste your BRAND sticker at the back of his car ( Nice & Huge ) . He drives the car in front of BEN’s car. He stops it at the signal in front of BEN’s car ( Do it subtly – so you don’t annoy him ) . He will for sure notice it.
– Ask Jane to call him – Now as a person from FRESH IM ( dont worry he wont recognize her voice from the previous call ) .She should ask BEN for 10 mins of his time for a person from FRESH IM to come and meet him in person ( an appointment basically ) . For sure there is a 99% possibility he will give an appointment.
Note : BEN will give an appointment for the following reasons :
1) He thinks in his mind that FRESH IM is something really big. He is just curious to know what it is all about.
2) Via. the repeated exposure in the past 2 weeks , he has a subtle idea that FRESH IM is something for his business ( as it helps in increasing sales )
3) Or simply for the reason “What the hell is this ? Ive been noticing too much of it ! ”
Important : You are not even showing your face to him in Week 3 ! All the above happens in a very subtle manner .
Week 4 :
You know what BEN’s favorite drink is already. Get a nice packed bottle of it and carry it in your bag to meet BEN
Dress to impress. Walk with confidence into his office. Carry your card. Open the door – be damn polite with a pleasant smile. Ask his permission to be seated. Look into his eyes and say ” Sir, its a pleasure meeting you. Ive heard a lot about your company and products . Am the CEO of FRESH IM ” … and hand over your card ….
Explain him all the salient features of your product ( make it a point for him to understand how your product will directly or in-directly help him make more money ).
Dont sell yet – Give him a FREE trial for his entire company to use your product for the first month . Build a friendly rapport. When about to leave – finish it with style, say ” Mr.Ben, I like offering gifts to people I meet. So I thought of grabbing this bottle of scotch for you on the way” …and hand over the bottle to him – shake hands firmly and leave saying ” Looking forward towards a WIN-WIN relationship Sir ”
Consider him your lifelong customer !
Top 3 perks in the above approach :
– Once BEN becomes your customer, you guys start hanging out and he becomes your gateway to all other of his friends circle ie. More customers via. his recommendation .
– You learn a very important lesson ie. everything you see in this world is not what it looks like & has not happened at that moment . It all happens via. intelligent HOME WORK at the back ground .
– The best part is, When people talk about you saying, ” This guy is gifted. He knows the magic of winning a customer at the first meeting” … you have your own smile of wisdom on your face
and yes, If you enjoyed reading this – please SHARE generously !