Are you continually looking for new business from new prospects or do you secure regular repeat profitable business, referrals and testimonials from your existing clients?
Do you spend more than 50% of your time in a meeting trying to sell, talking about yourself, product or service? Maybe win a small order or provide a quick fix and never hear from the person again?
Building relationships is all about trust confidence and rapport; we all know that, yet few of us really invest the time to build meaningful relationships with prospects and clients. Individuals and organisations have changing needs as they grow and develop and their market changes. Stuff happens, your client is subject to pressures; remember, your relationship is at two levels the ‘project’ and the personal
A good relationship:
– creates opportunities for follow on work
– provides recommendations
– enhances your (business) reputation
– provides protection against competition
Different things will make each of your clients happy, each one seeks to acquire benefits relating to them as an individual and their organisation.
It is important to understand at which point they are happy to engage with technology and at which point they want to engage with you F2F or by telephone.
Think about the different types of buyer and how to deal with them, adjust your behaviour accordingly.
Identify the key drivers and triggers.
Don’t ‘clock watch’
Take the time to find out what your client really wants? Ask yourself if you really understand the triggers when you meet a potential referrer or prospect.
Let the ‘buyer’ talk and listen. Talk about his/her situation focus on them not ‘the sale’
Set aside time for the relationship to grow and flourish, build that trust.
Relationships are of course two-way; the client has responsibilities.
- Manage expectations
- Listen carefully
- Manage your time
- Educate clients
- Deal with problems
- Be attentive.
- Define requirement
- Monitor progress
- Meet commitments.
Always remember to:
− show concern for buyer needs
− ask open questions and listen attentively
− think about your service and how it provides a solution to identified needs
− be friendly and help reach a solution without being pushy
− set objectives for each meeting
− ask yourself if you achieved those objectives
Your long-term relationship is more important than any short-term gain, don’t put repeat business at risk.
Follow up, follow up, follow up
Listen, share, manage and evaluate the client experience.