We’re kicking off our inbound coverage with a presentation from INBOUND regular, Kim Orlesky. As VP of sales for ConvergentIS, Orlesky has plenty of experience and happily shared a wealth of information with INBOUND attendees this morning. From the disadvantages of cold calling as your first point of contact to the importance of knowing the difference between asynchronous (unscheduled contact—emails) and synchronous (same place, same time—scheduled meetings) connections with clients.

In the context of virtual quick selling (including large transactions), Orlesky shared 5 of her sales techniques:

  1. If you want to connect, connect

While simple in concept, Orlesky doesn’t want her listeners to overcomplicate the process of getting connected. Take advantage of tools like social media and reach out to customers to prove you have a specific interest in assisting them.

2. When in doubt, book the meeting

If someone is willing to book a meeting with you, that expresses that they are interested in your product/service and are willing to take out the valuable time in their day. Orlesky recommends that you ask for a 15-minute meeting, book a 25-minute meeting, and use only 20 minutes of their time. Get information on what specific issue your customer needs to be solved. Use this information for later meetings. This will help you tailor your meetings to specific customers.

3. What is today? What will be tomorrow?

Orlesky recommends that you never directly ask a client what their issues are. If they knew their issue, they would’ve solved it themselves. Instead, focus on pinpointing exactly where the business is today. Then, contrast that with where they want to be in the future. Find out where they would like to be in 6 months.

4. Get the meeting. Get the meeting. Get the meeting.

If you follow the 20-minute meeting rule, at minute 18 you should only ask for a reconnection. Making large sales will require multiple meetings and you don’t want to lose the momentum you’ve built. Don’t let the meeting end before you schedule a follow-up meeting.

5. This vs. That

Use the contrast you discovered in earlier meetings to showcase the specifics of how you can benefit your customer. Use real examples of where their business is currently and provide data that shows you have what it takes to take them where they need to be. Orlesky begins her meetings with 3 slides that showcase where the customer’s business is now, where it will be in the future, and how much progress can be made towards that goal in X amount of time (6 months, for example). She stresses the importance of contrast being used in your demos. Without the context of seeing themselves in your example, you are lacking a key element of making your sale.

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