Getting that second prospect meeting is about strategy, tenacity, and persistence.
Too often agencies don’t do a good job of digging around during first meetings for opportunity areas or pain points that they can capitalize on.
And too often agencies either don’t have the talents, the time, or the desire to stay with prospects and nurture them down the line.
Not doing this is nearly a sure recipe for lost opportunities to win new business.
We encourage our clients to go into initial meetings with good smart questions, listen to the prospect’s answers, and probe for issues or concerns they might have.
We also encourage clients to use examples of the work they’ve done for other clients to show the prospect how they’ve dealt with similar situations the prospect might be dealing with.
And we discourage our clients from just sharing the work in isolation, and instead, as they hear a prospect’s answers to the questions they’ve asked, suggest to the prospect that “we’ve dealt with something similar with one of our clients too” and use that as the entry point for sharing.
So instead of just telling the prospect how great the agency is, the prospect can see for themselves how smart our agency clients are based on the questions asked and the solutions they’ve delivered for other clients.
Yelling and telling and selling
We tell our agency clients to let the prospect “check the boxes” and conclude for themselves that their agency possesses the value they need, versus just “yelling and telling and selling” the prospect about their agency’s superiority.
They get that from every other agency out there.
The goal for any first meeting should be a second meeting where the agency can begin to paint the paths forward of where they can take a prospect’s business.
The Proven Power of That Second Prospect Meeting
Moving prospects to a second meeting not only will give agencies an opportunity to learn more about the prospect’s business but it will better cement a relationship and better an agency’s chance of closing business.
Back in Q3, 2020 I ran a correlation analysis looking at the # of 1st meetings and the # of 2nd meetings relative to the number of wins our clients achieved to see if there was any stronger connection between 1st meetings and wins versus 2nd meetings and wins.
While the importance of first and second meetings kind of rode side-by-side through most of 2019, it appears (maybe because of COVID or maybe just getting tougher out there), the number of second meetings set has become significantly more important in helping clients get more wins.
Mark is a 30-year veteran of the consumer packaged goods, advertising, and marketing service industry. Mark started his career at DDB Needham in Chicago prior to earning his MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Business School at Northwestern where he majored in Marketing and Economics. Prior to starting RSW/US in 2005, Mark was General Manager for AcuPOLL, a global research consultancy. Sneider worked in Marketing for S.C. Johnson and KAO Brands. Sneider has been invited to speak at numerous Agency events and network conferences domestically and internationally including the 4A’s, Magnet, NAMA, TAAN, and MCAN. Sneider has been featured in prominent industry publications including Adweek, Media Post, e-Marketer, and Forbes. When not working (which often seems like not often), Mark likes to run miles, go to church, and just chill with a hard copy issue of Fast Company.