What to do after meeting with a prospect
You have just left a prospect meeting, you thought things went well, you used your professional demeanour and friendly nature to push the value that your service offers. But what is the next steps?
The first thing to do – and it kind of goes without saying – is to absorb your meeting notes, you need to digest everything you collect on the q and a sheet to appreciate the challenges they face both operationally and commercially within their business, and identify where you can bridge the gap by helping them better leverage tech.
Ideally you want to schedule a time to walk the prospect through the proposal, particularly if it’s a complex one, there’s multiple layers involved with a project as well as selling them your managed service, so you’ll ideally want to make time either face to face – or perhaps through Teams or Zoom -to walk them through the proposal so they can understand all of the intricacies of everything you put in front of them. We appreciate that’s not always possible; some want to take away the proposal, or maybe your pitching them to a middle manager that needs to take them to the c-suite before you can progress that opportunity, but ideally you will want an opportunity to talk them through everything you are proposing just to make sure they fully understood it.
But, if that isn’t going to be possible, make sure it can be easily digested and that the proposal really is as idiot proof as it can be so they can understand what you are proposing – and importantly, why.
Tailoring your proposal
To tailor your proposal you’ll want to take your standard template that talks about you and your business and personalise it to make sure that firstly; it talks about them and their needs, within the process you will want to highlight their operational, commercial, and compliance challenges, what are the gaps you spot right now that their incumbent are struggling to help them with? Or, perhaps the problems they are having using technology to help them at all? Highlight those areas for improvement where you are able to deliver solutions that can improve their business, operational efficiency, and ultimately their profitability. You want to spell those things out within the proposal, walking through the challenges and issue you spotted with the gap analysis, where there is opportunity for improvement, and how you are going to deliver on that – what are you going to put in place and how are you going to help them with those challenges?
Lastly, as we have explored before, make sure that you have structured your pricing model in a way that they will understand, either break it down into component parts so they can compare like for like with what they have now, or perhaps even consider mirroring the pricing structure from their incumbent to make it as easy as possible to compare your proposition with the one they have now. You might be more expensive, that might be intentional, you might include more of a service, this must be evident and clear in your proposal so they can see the value, otherwise they may skip over everything and miss the value you’re offering.
Beyond sharing the proposal with the prospect you will want to be sure to follow up, whether meeting face to face or online, or perhaps you need to email the proposal and give them a few days, be sure to set a follow up at least – unless its pre-arranged – within around 3-7 days depending on the prospect. After you have met with them and talked through the proposal, you want to be sure to welcome any of those initial questions or miss understandings, particularity if they think there is anything missing or anything they couldn’t quite digest from your proposal – you need to catch them early to make sure they understood everything you presented.
Having an ongoing sequence of follow up touch points will help you keep ahead of your peers and make you seem hungry for their business, some prospects like to feel you want to do business with them. It’s so easy to get distracted by everything else in the business, fire off a proposal and forget to follow up hoping they come back to you, but remember, in progressive, proactive, sales and marketing activity you will have to chase and pursue prospects far more than ever before with referral opportunities that you have relied upon on in the past. So, be sure to use a structured system of touch points that will prompt you and remind you, and even automate some of those steps to send out follow-up emails or schedule calls in your calendar to reach out and touch base with those prospects periodically once every few days, certainly in the initial weeks while you need to keep on the tail of those prospects to try and close that deal.
Thank you for reading, we hope you found this information useful – if you are an MSP and you’re looking to grow we’d love to help, please get in touch with our expert team and see how we can help you.