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Startup Selling: Talking Sales with Scott Sambucci

Over the past twenty years, I’ve led three Silicon Valley startups to their first customers and revenue, and sold everything from financial data, enterprise software, and vaporware to cabinet doors, amusement park daily programs, and “would you like fries with that…?” My customers have included the largest financial institutions in the world, top US Universities, cabinet door makers and people that eat at Applebees and go to amusement parks... I’ve learned a lot, and made a few, ahem, well… a lot, of mistakes. Here in The Sales Podcast with Scott Sambucci, I share the lessons learned from my past two decades of selling. In each episode, I discuss a specific topic in selling and sales strategy like how to find new prospective customers, how to manage leads, how to run an effective sales meeting, uncovering customer needs, and developing pricing strategies. Episodes are a mix of guest interviews, observations from the field, and sales techniques that I’m using every single day. And people that care about such things, I’ve written two books, been a TEDx Speaker, been featured on CNBC, The Financial Times and NPR. Oh… I’m also a husband, a dad, and a three-time Ironman triathlete. Build your sales process so that you can have the company you imagine. The Sales Podcast with Scott Sambucci will help you get there.
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Sep 30, 2015

Startup Selling: Talking Sales with Scott Sambucci

SalesCast #3: Preparing for Your First Meeting with a New Prospect

This SalesCast is brought to you by, well, SalesQualia. Improve Sales Performance with:

  1. Self-learning resources, including books on Amazon.com and self-paced online courses.
  2. Workshops & Training, hosted at venues across Silicon Valley and the US.
  3. 1:1 Coaching & Consulting for company founders and sales professionals that want a personalized plan.

In this episode, Scott and Robert discuss different methods to prepare for your first call/meeting with a prospective client and the ways in which you can help keep the momentum moving forward before the meeting takes place.  Some key areas discussed are:

  • The hazards of getting a meeting on the books and not engaging with the prospect before hand.
  • A checklist of actions to complete before the big meeting and how to utilize the prospect’s assistant.
  • What to do when you aren’t able to get the prospect on the phone ahead of time and how to leave voice mails and emails that are more likely to get a response.
  • How to script out how you would like the meeting to go and creating opportunities for conversation and questions.
  • The importance of doing proper research on all attendees for the meeting and how contacting them ahead of time can create more champions for your product.

We hope you enjoy the podcast and would greatly appreciate feedback!  Any suggestions on future topics you would like to hear covered and/or podcast guests you’d like to hear would be great!  Enjoy!

Podcast Notes

1:30 – Setting up a meeting and the hazards of not engaging during the time leading up to it.

5:30 – Spending weeks of preparation for a meeting with the top exec, only to find out that they don’t know why they are in the meeting (and how to avoid this!).

7:50 – What to do when you don’t have access to a top-level exec before the meeting.

9:00 – Creating a pre-meeting checklist.

10:00 – The importance of short calls before the meeting to help set expectations.

12:00 – How to use your pre-meeting preparation to bring additional buyers into the meeting.

13:45 – What to do when you can’t get the prospect on the phone ahead of the meeting.

15:00 – Techniques for leaving voice mails and emails that improve your response rate.

19:00 – Final preparation going into the big meeting.

20:00 – How to use LinkedIn for pre-meeting research to help you build better relationships faster.

22:00 – How to script out the meeting ahead of time and building in opportunities for questions and conversation.

23:30 – Making sure you allow yourself to find out every meeting participant’s needs so they can be including in the meeting.

25:00 – How to make you meeting not a demo, but a conversation with your product as the backdrop.

26:30 – How to use your meeting preparation to get other people at the prospect company involved and to prevent participants from walking in blind to the meeting.

31:00 – Number one piece of advice for preparing for the big meeting.

33:20 – How pre-calls with different meeting attendees can help you make them look better and the advantages this brings to the sale.

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