Many sales consultants advise professional managed services providers to warm up their prospect’s in the first sales meeting. Of course, this means you’re trying to break the ice between you and the prospect while building rapport. The big question though is how much time should you dedicate to warming up the prospect in your marketing meetings? Some of the experts will tell you that you should use the entire first meeting to build rapport with your prospect. Others may feel that using 15 minutes of your time is the correct balance in your IT marketing process. Is it possible to actually use too much rapport building to the point that you turn off your potential customer?
Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing and in the case of rapport building this certainly holds true. I bring this up because of a rare opportunity I had a few years ago to follow up on a computer consultants that had gone off one of the sales leads we had delivered. This was very unique situation because this prospect had let me know that his father had recently passed away. However, he was still willing to meet with the IT services provider we recommended to find out more about their company and services.
The issue we are discussing only reared it’s head when I just happened to follow up a few weeks later on that prospect to see how it turned out. The reason I was so anxious to follow up is because he had such a high lever of interest in their model and seemed like he was going to sign up if the price was right. Well to my horror I discovered that he had a very negative reaction to the marketing meeting we had set up. The contact related that the two computer business owners had spent the entire meeting ‘warming him up’ and talking about his father’s death. Needless to say this is an example of too much warm up killing a great IT sales lead.
John Black is the Marketing Director at MSP Telemarketing and has over 10 years experience marketing for IT providers and VAR marketing to help them get more IT leads that turn into IT sales.