Cut Sales Meetings Down By One Third BUT Increase Conversions

Sales meetings are too long. They're battles where you wear down the prospect too many times. It takes time. Right? Wrong. The reason that sales meetings run long is you have to price condition the prospect... and then sell him. If you're selling things the public doesn't buy regularly - such as pianos, roofs or dental work -- they don't know how much they cost. And though they may be thinking they cost a lot, more times than not they’re not even in the ball park. Here are five ways to price condition your prospects before you ever see them. Educate them, then meet with them. It affords a better conversation and sales environment.

1. Know Your Ideal Client: If you sell something that's fairly pricy and that people don't buy very often, they may not have a frame of reference for how much they should expect to pay. This is true for vacations, dental work, hearing aids, sales training, a new roof, higher-end electronics, jewelry, office furniture and so forth. If a prospect doesn't know how much something should cost, they'll probably UNDER-ESTIMATE how much it is in their mind. Then when you show up to sell them, you've got to cover a lot of territory to close that gap. This leads to maddeningly long sales cycles, multiple-call closes (instead of 1- or 2-call closes), longer-than-necessary sales meetings, and phantom objections (they're reluctant to admit how expensive it is).

2. Pre-Positioning Package: The best strategy to avoid this frustration is to start building a case for the value of your product before you ever sit down with the prospect. How? Send him a pre-positioning package (PPP) that is professionally produced and delivered quickly. Printed reports and DVDs work best. In it, you can lay out all the key points you'd make at the sales appointment to win him over to your price. But here's the extra bonus: Because it is in writing versus spewing from a salesperson's mouth, it has more credibility, believability, AND authority. Your argument gains authority if it’s printed.

3. Confirmation Calls: Sending the PPP isn't enough. When you call to confirm the sales appointment you want to make sure the prospect has read it. Let him know what information he will find in it. Direct him to specific page numbers that are the most relevant. Explain why it's important for him to read it before the salesperson gets to his house. Present yourself as his advocate, and inform him that the "Information Kit" will educate him on the best questions to ask his salesperson or any salesperson in the industry for that matter.

4. During The Meeting: Don't forget about the PPP during the sales presentation. The written word will give you much more power in a face-to-face setting. Salespeople have been known to "fudge" the truth. You can't fudge what's in writing. If the prospect hasn't read it yet (some people won't read), you can walk them through it. If they have, you can color their interpretation in your favor. When you get to pricing, they'll understand that a cheaper (whatever it is you sell) would be an inferior and undesirable product.

5. Enable Price Shopping: If you can't close the deal at the appointment, then by all means let the prospect shop the competition with your marketing tool (the pre-positioning package), as their guide. They already know that you may cost more than the competitors, but now they’re loaded with the information they need to see and realize that your competitor's low prices also mean low quality, low service, low reliability and so forth. If you have innovated your company and have something to be proud of, you should never be afraid to let an educated prospect shop around. Ultimately, they'll come back.