Updated: Sep 13, 2018
Known nationally as “America’s Corporate & Personal Coach,” Ken Taylor’s advice and services have helped companies like General Electric, General Motors, Chrysler, CitiBank, Wells Fargo and the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States.
The Marketing Management Group representative has gotten you the contact person to call and has informed the prospect that you will be calling. So, how are you going to handle the call? You have several options:
Tell the prospect all about your product and services.
Go for the close! Ask them to buy a vehicle from you!
Get a face to face appointment.
Option #1: You will get the “we are not interested,” or the “Send me some information and I will make sure my owner receives it.” In other words, don’t expect to hear back.
Option #2: Most likely you will get a hang up or a “we’re happy with our current supplier.” (The gatekeeper gets this call every day and is trained to respond with a “no thanks.”)
Option #3: Selling in the commercial vehicle world is a face to face game. If you can get in front of the prospect you will have the opportunity to build rapport and advance the relationship process. Clearly this is the best option! Unfortunately, most commercial sales consultants don’t know the process of gaining a face to face appointment and the best approach on the actual meeting. Let’s take an in-depth review of how to maximize your chances of success.
The Phone Call
One of the most important things you can do when you are making the return call after your MMG rep has uncovered the opportunity for you, is to understand how he or she was able to create the opportunity that has been given to you. What was the key reason the prospect agreed to take your call? You want to build on the MMG reps’ efforts and mirror what I call the “hot button” that made the prospects open to further discussion.
The prospect could have had several reasons to agree to take your call:
He/she is in the market for a vehicle.
He/she will be in the market in a specific time frame (6 months, a year, etc)
He/she has a specific issue with his or her current supplier.
He/she is open to looking at an alternative supplier.
He/she has detailed questions regarding your offer.
Whatever the reason you need to mirror their request or need to start the follow up telephone call with a goal of getting an appointment. EXAMPLE:
“Mr. Smith, I understand from the information that I received you are going to be in the market for a new vehicle in the next three months, is that correct?”
“Mr. Smith, I understand you have had some issues with your current supplier, is that correct?”
DO NOT START TALKING ABOUT YOUR DEALERSHIP, THE VEHICLE YOU WANT TO OFFER OR EVEN ABOUT YOUR GREAT SERVICE DEPARTMENT!”
The biggest mistake I encounter when working with dealerships is the “Tell Syndrome.” Everyone wants to talk about how the dealership service is outstanding, but in reality, you have not earned that right! You have three goals in the initial phone call:
Get the appointment!
Gather enough information that you have a full understanding of the prospects needs, wants and problems. Do this and you will be fully prepared for the actual face to face meeting.
Position yourself as the expert and the person who cares.
Next month, we'll take a deep dive into how to accomplish each of these important goals.
Images from Ken Taylor's recent visit with the MMG team in Washington, Mo.