Every Wednesday at noon, the team at MerchLab gets together for lunch in their conference room. They discuss a challenge that one of the distributors is having. As a group, they come together to help solve the challenge.
Harold, did you watch the Vikings game on Monday night?
Maybe Olivia and I watched the game, you know women watch football.
Sorry, did any of you watch that shitty game against the Packers?
I have Rodgers on my fantasy team, and he won me my week.
I didn’t watch the game, but I saw the stats. We do girls’ night while the boys watch Monday night football.
The Vikings are the same every year Max. About the 10th best team in the league. They always have talent and never have a solid o-line or d-line in the playoffs.
I hope my grandkids see them win a Super Bowl someday.
How about play in a Super Bowl someday?
Enough about the Vikings. Let’s talk about my meeting with Coherent Solutions. They have over 1,000 employees. We built their store a few years ago, and HR uses the store for talent acquisition, recruiting, and onboarding. Their events team uses the store for every event. They are a stable client.
What do they do?
They are a software development company.
I am not sure what that means, but I am sure they are smart.
My meeting with them went well. But now they want us to help them with their sales team. They asked me how our other clients use their automated e-commerce stores to boost sales. I told them I would meet with my team and think of some relevant use cases to share with them.
When it comes to sales, it is all about the funnel. At what point in the funnel is it best to give out swag?
That depends on the company and the client. Is it B2B or B2C?
I agree. It is case by case and depends on what the main goal is. I think too many companies are trying to accomplish too many things and don’t understand their funnel. It is obvious to say the goal is more sales, but that doesn’t help.
I am lost. Isn’t the goal to make the sale?
Sometimes. The goal could be to drive traffic to a website or get somebody to give you their email.
Or to get a meeting set up.
Or to get a follow-up meeting.
I see, so that is what you mean by a funnel. A lot of things need to happen before they pay you.
It could also be after they have paid you. To get them to pay you again. Or to get them to refer a friend to your company. Mary, do you know at what point in the funnel they need help?
I am not exactly sure, but it sounds like they were meeting with clients, and they thought the meetings went well, but then they were not getting them as clients.
Did you ask about their follow up plan after the meeting? A lot of salespeople work their ass off to get a meeting. Then they do well at the meeting. But they forget to follow up. Or they send an email a week later. Worse, they put that potential client on an email list that spams all prospective clients the same dumb email.
I was like that early on. I was so focused on getting meetings that my follow up was awful. I was “on to the next” the following day. I had more meetings and current clients to deal with that my follow up was poor. What is ironic is I worked so hard to get the meeting you would think I would have worked even harder to close them as a client.
If this is the case for the salespeople at Coherent Solutions, then they should implement a standard follow up procedure for all salespeople after potential client meetings.
They should use the meeting to learn more about the potential client. Do they have kids, what hobbies are they into, what is currently on their desk. Then after the meeting, they could go to the store and send them a gift.
I like that idea. They could set a reminder that two weeks after they sent the gift, they follow up with a phone call to see if the potential client received the gift. Two weeks gives the potential client time to reach out to the Coherent Solutions salesperson and say thank you. It also gives them time to talk to their team and report and feedback from the meeting.
They could be interested in Coherent Solutions services after the initial meeting but need to talk to the boss about the budget, or maybe they still have other competitors to vet. The follow-up phone call will let Coherent Solutions salespeople know where they stand.
I wouldn’t count on people thanking the Coherent Solutions people for their gift. People today have no understanding of civics. When somebody sends you a gift, you say thank you. I have been in this business for 40 years, and I am shocked when people do say thank you.
Thank you, this is excellent information. It should be simple for them to create a budget for a follow-up gift.
They can A/B test it. Send gifts to 100 potential customers and not send gifts to another 100 and see what the results are. Then they will know if the money is well spent.
Thank you! I love all of you.