If you want to sell your space effectively you need to be prompt, persistent and professional – particularly in a competitive market.
It also pays to be responsive – leading digital marketing software company Hubspot recently researched 2200 companies and found that those who tried to leads within an hour were nearly 7 times likelier to have meaningful conversations with decision makers than those who waited.
So how can you make yourself your buyers’ No 1 choice for events?
1. Respond to prospects quickly
The faster you respond to a prospect’s first enquiry, the better the conversion rate.
If you can’t get them by phone, create a library of standard email responses for the most common questions you will be asked. Invest time in crafting responses that are professional, effective and have strong calls to action.
Fire these out straightaway and note follow up tasks to close in on that initial consultation. As the adage goes – Always Be Closing.
2. Qualify prospects correctly
Another adage is: you only get one chance to make a first impression. Take care of the little details – it’s not good to commit to a client call or meeting without properly consulting your calendar first. Make sure you are available.
By the same token, in your initial call you need to make sure the prospect is the right fit. There is no benefit to either party wasting time if the prospect does not have the budget. Be upfront but also….
It’s not all about you. Be client-centric – make a point of speaking less than the prospect and note any selling points that you can use to your advantage.
If the conversation dries up or the prospect is reticent – try using open-ended questions to keep the dialogue moving.
4. Be confident
Like we said earlier: always be closing. Be bold and go for the close – believe that you have the best venue for your client. Be explicit about when you need their contract signing off and the deposit due. Without being desperate make it clear that you want to work with them.
5. Don’t take your eye off the ball
Once you have got the signed contract don’t forget to keep focused on your client – always make sure that you treat them with the same level of enthusiasm as when you were trying to win their business. Your care and attention may result in repeat bookings.
How integrated technology can help you
Sales is a contact sport. Using venue management software and CRM solutions together can help you engage your prospects and clients in a number of ways:
1. Enquiry handling
You need a system for getting back to prospects fast. A good venue management software system will enable you to capture all prospects details quickly as well as enabling sales staff to set follow up tasks.
2. Creating effective proposals
Integration with CRM solutions such as Dynamics enables venues to send effective, eye-catching and professional emails straight from their Office desktop. Integration with Outlook ensures that no client communication is lost and eliminates any paper chase or duplication of effort.
3. Lead nurturing
We get it – plans change. You want a cost-effective “set it and forget it” way of keeping clients engaged in the interim period after they make a decision. An effective CRM system will send out campaigns and follow up emails on your behalf. It will even remind you to contact re-engaged leads – a great time saver and ice-breaker.
4. Fostering professionalism
Keeping all your client data in a CRM with an integrated venue management software means any member of the team can quickly respond to your prospects’ questions with a full client history at their fingertips. The can also query the booking diary without wasting their prospects’ time by launching another application – it’s all in one place!
5. Repeat business
With a full audit trail of previously booked events, you can easily create targeted marketing campaigns and account manage your existing lucrative clients. Use the tools you need to generate repeat business.
Technology is no replacement for the human touch or having the right attitude, but it can be a great tool to increase conversions and repeat business.
A robust CRM coupled with a venue management software solution can help you keep your prospects engaged while ensuring that they are followed up at exactly the right time in the sales cycle.