We’ve discussed how to gain a prospect’s attention early in a meeting. Now, we would like to dig a little deeper with some examples of how you might engage them in the first five minutes of a first meeting.
Share a unique meeting objective. Position yourself and your company by sharing compelling facts.
For example, your opening might sound like this:
What I’d like to do during our meeting today is to briefly make introductions, share an example of a recent customer success, and then learn a little bit more about you, your situation, and how we can help. Then, we can make a mutual decision as to whether or not it makes sense to proceed beyond today. Then, if so, what those next steps might be. How does that sound?
Don’t Just Sell
Here, your hope is for them to see you as honorable and sincere, and not just there to sell them something if there’s no fit.
After some brief introductions, you might share a few facts that will help the prospect draw some desired conclusions. For example, maybe you’ve worked with other clients in the same industry for the last fifteen years. This fact would help the prospect conclude that you have industry experience that can be useful to our conversations. If the prospect’s organization is a global company, you might let the prospect know that you’ve delivered services in fifty countries across six continents. Be relevant and help the prospect conclude that you can support them around the world.
It’s About Them, Not You
The point isn’t to go on and on about how good you are, but to lower any anxiety that the prospect may have about your experience or ability to support their organization.
Finally, you want to share a client success story. This shouldn’t be a long, boring implementation tale but rather, a brief, structured way of sharing an example of how your organization has helped someone else with a situation that the prospect will find relatable.
In the brief anecdote, you might describe how you’ve helped a similar target solve a business problem and related reasons that are relevant to the prospect. Tell them how you helped address it and what the tangible results were. Make no promise of similar results – only that you want to explore their situation, as relevant.
With these simple steps, you differentiate yourself by the way that you engage the prospect during the first five minutes in a sincere and efficient manner, and one that paves the way for further exploratory conversations.