In this episode of Inbound Sales Journey, Ryan and Gray discuss the ideal amount of time to spend with a prospect, and what to do to avoid wasting time with bad ones.This is a question agency owners frequently ask to decide to see where they stack up and see if they are spending the time they shouldn’t be.
Here are the main takeaways:
Lead the Prospect
Prospects take comfort in being lead. They enjoy working with agencies that have a clear plan for them. They are looking for an agency to guide them to what they need to do.
The first step to making sure you aren’t spending too much time with a prospect is to have a process established. You want to know what questions you’re asking, what you need from the client, what your qualifications are, and more.
At GuavaBox, we sell a GamePlan first. This helps us get paid to determine a strategy and make sure we’re working with serious clients as well. If they aren’t interested in a discovery project with us, we know they’re not a good fit.
A good prospect will feel comfortable knowing you’re aware of strategy. Rather than the client telling you what they need, show them that you focus on strategy and will develop a plan for them.
Every agency client needs a plan. Having a strategy piece built into your sales process will simplify the entire engagement.
The “Yeah, But…” Test
The worst, but most common thing we hear from agency sales reps that desperately want to make a sale is “yeah, but…". Even if the client is a poor fit and there are red flags, an eager sales person will try and justify continuing to pursue a prospect.
If you find yourself saying "yeah, but..." you need to reevaluate the situation and remember what happened the other times you found yourself saying "yeah, but..."
Spend your time with qualified fits and not ones that you think only maybe could work with your agency. You can easily find yourself wasting hours of time convincing a bad fit that will cancel or not sign up. Pay attention to this test, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time and stress.
There is little variation with your good prospects, so don’t waste time with those who don’t fit that mold.
Clarify with the Prospect
You want to follow-up with a prospect and make it clear that you understood what they were saying, and they understood what you were saying.
On the phone, prospects may feel pressured and say or agree to things that they don’t intend to. You want to make sure that you get a proper gauge of where the prospect actually is, so you don’t waste your time as well. You can have these follow-up templated emails filled in with your notes and a call.
Make sure you have a solid understanding of where they are before taking what they’re saying as a commitment to move ahead.
Miscommunication or misunderstandings can quickly eat up time with prospects.
At the end of the day, your prospecting process needs to work for your agency. You can’t take everything you hear as law. Be willing to spend extra time with good prospects. If it takes longer than your process typically is but they are a good fit, spend the time and be flexible.