In the first "class" on the Art of Selling (see immediately preceding post) we "talked" about getting and conducting the first appointment, the "tell me" interview. It's called that because the job of the seller in that meeting is to LISTEN to, and LEARN everything about what the client knows about his business and his perceptions of the opportunities for growth. The objective of the meeting is an agreement between the parties as to what "problem" the sales representative will try to solve at which point he will re-visit and propose his solution (or to be crass, sell).
Next step: That day, or the very next, send a brief letter, email if you like, expressing appreciation, reconfirming your assignment on behalf of the client and your eagerness to have a promising solution when you visit next (insert appointment time and date).
The Work: Use your first meeting notes as bullet points to be researched.
a. What's the market size for his product or service?
b. What are the geographic considerations (where is the market that he can
c. What is the profile of his consumer?
5. Household size
6. More? (Think)
d. Who are his competitors?
e. Is this a high or low margin business?
f. What is the brand position of your client and those of his competitors?
g. What share of the market does he control?
h. What are the product and price differences between him and his competitors?
i. What is the lifetime value of a new customer?
j. What can he afford per new customer acquisition?
K. More? (Think more).
A. The executive summary: Re-state the agreed upon problems/opportunities
identified in the first meeting
B. Next, summarize your findings from your "work" and conclude this section
connecting the salient findings to the solution objective.
C. Next, present the specifics of your proposal.
1. Here's what to do.
2. Here's the suggested consumer messaging
3. Here are case histories supporting this approach and their favorable
4. Here are my projections for new sales, the
cost of sales and the profit margins resulting from this program
Shut up! And get ready to HEAR and Respond to questions and objections.
Love Your Work and Work Tirelessly
Communicate Honestly and Fearlessly
Serve, Don't Sell
Remember: This "course" is to be good; great is a whole other course.