This is part 1 of a 6-part series that breaks down the crucial components of sales meetings. I’ll introduce the components of an effective discovery meeting structure and why it works.
I have watched many sales reps come and go and ascend up the ranks from SDR (Sales Development Rep) to AE (Account Executive). Surprisingly it’s very easy for me to see who will struggle to deliver revenue and who will succeed.
I can listen to one meeting or call and determine whether we’re in trouble or ops are in good hands and have a good shot at closing.
What is this magic “sign?”
After 12 years in sales and hundreds of meetings and ops, I can say confidently this is my secret sauce for claiming the top spot on the leaderboard at multiple companies. However, it continues to amaze me how many sales reps have no structure to their meetings and are often “winging it” on almost every sales call.
Recommended read: 9 Expert Tips For A Successful Sales Call
What is Meeting Control?
Meeting control can sound like something fairly broad but actually, it’s rather tactical and specific.
Meetings have a natural anatomy and if you adhere to this on EVERY call you can significantly increase your chances of closing a deal.
When teaching this concept/process, I like to typically first focus on a first meeting and practice, practice, practice so that my team nails it. It lays the correct foundation that makes expanding the learning easy. This structure also makes the 2nd, 3rd and 4th meetings a cakewalk.
In my mind, small tactical changes can have huge long-term impacts on revenue.
So let’s break it down.
Recommended read: How To Close A Deal When Your Prospect Has Gone Dark
Your Discovery Meeting Structure
ALL meetings consist of 5 major components:
1) Rapport building
2) Meeting opening
3) Questioning (discovery or deeper level questions)
4) Demo/presentation/discussion of what you are selling
5) Meeting closing
All components have a very deliberate and important purpose. Control. When your prospect feels like you’re in control then they do not feel like they have to take control.
What Makes This Discovery Meeting Structure Airtight?
Having this meeting structure and control sends the following messages to your prospects:
1) You know what you’re doing.
2) They can feel comfortable letting you lead the discussion.
3) They can relax and listen to your message.
4) They don’t have to worry that you will embarrass them in front of their colleagues they might bring into future meetings.
5) It gives them an understanding of how all other meetings will be conducted.
When a prospect jumps in at the very beginning and tries to take control it’s because they do not want to look bad in front of their other colleagues or they’re not confident you have control.
Building a relationship with your prospect to then alleviate that anxiety puts you in a very strong position to lead the meeting and the deal cycle.
People are sheep (and that’s not an insult it’s the reality). They would much rather have someone else take the reigns than have to do it themselves.
This is the reason why folks would much rather take Uber than drive or sit back in a limo. It’s also why luxury travel companies are able to charge so much! They take care of it for their guests, so they do not have to be in control but can rather enjoy their surroundings.
It’s also why there are far more individual contributors than managers. Adhering to a process is the first step to establishing control and helping your prospects relax and learn.
In the posts that follow as part of this series, we’ll discuss how to drastically level up your deal control and ultimately your win rate.
Also published on Medium.