Selling to groups and committees can result in landing an ideal client when done right! On the other hand, most salespeople were never trained on any approaches, techniques or processes to effectively sell to groups and committees. As a result they simply arrive and start talking – just like the rest of the vendors.
The group or committee is frequently referred to as a “Selection Committee” having the responsibility to choose between several potential vendors. To the Selection Committee, the selection process can be laborious and seem like a Death March at times as the Fashion Show of vendors evolves into a boring line of salespeople who sound like they’re reading from a book and the decks of slides and narrations turn into an endless drone. The Sandler trained professional knows how to capitalize on the opportunity and the selling weaknesses of his competitors. Here is just one of about twenty-five Sandler approaches that we train on that will help you outsell the competition:
You probably have never met any, but perhaps one person on the selection committee prior to your first meeting with the group. You want to make a great first impression - right! Wouldn’t it make sense to introduce yourself on the telephone ahead of time and wouldn’t it ‘be terrible’ if in the process of introducing yourself you asked them what they were hoping to learn during the meeting and they actually told you their “pain”! Yes! The point here is to make what we call in Sandler, a Pre-Approach call.
Here’s what it sounds like when you call:
You: “Hello Mr. Moneybags, this is Curtis Closer, with Money Manufacturing (because we’re Sandler Trained by Greg Nanigian and Associates) Industries. I’m looking forward to meeting you next week at the meeting. Am I catching you at a good time?”
Prospect: “Why yes Curtis and you can call me Maurice (the manipulator).”
You: “Thanks Maurice. Let me share with you why I’m calling, okay?”
Maurice: “Go ahead.”
You: “I thought that given the limited amount of time we have next week, I might call you and find out what you were hoping to get out of the meeting so I could better prepare myself.”
Me: “That was hard wasn’t it?”
Hardly anyone is making Pre-Approach calls! If you do, you’ll separate yourself from everyone else who is selling to selection committees, establish some bonding and rapport even before you arrive, you’ll find out what their interest is, needs are, problems are and, if you’re effective enough, you’ll find out what their deep-seated emotional needs are or what we in Sandler Training call “Pain”.
Make Pre-Approach calls to all members of the Selection Committee. Get the permission of the person who is your main contact first. Simply tell him or her that you’d like to better prepare yourself for the meeting by talking to the group members and finding out what they’re hoping to learn and get out of the meeting.
Contact me at 781-848-0993 or email@example.com if I can help you in any way.
Greg Nanigian is CEO of Greg Nanigian and Associates, affiliate Sandler Training. Over the past 26 years, we've helped thousands of sales professionals and organizations optimize their selling strategies, increase profits and create lasting relationships with their customers.