7 Keys to Set the Appointment IMMEDIATELY with ANY Prospect in Sales


Do you know the most important metric that you can be tracking in sales to know that you’re on track
to hit your sales goal? Now, most people think it’s most important to be tracking sales numbers,
but that’s really not true. In fact, it couldn’t be
further from the truth. The most important
metric that we have found with all of our years of
research to be tracking is the number of appointments
you’re setting with prospects. Let me put that in another way. The most important metric to be tracking is the number of discovery meetings, or appointments you’re
setting with prospects. Your ability to set the
appointment is going to be critical to your success in sales, and simply put, if you set enough appointments
with solid prospects, you will hit your sales numbers, period. Now, of course there are a lot of things that you can be doing
during those meetings in order to make your sales efforts much more productive and effective, but if you are simply focused on setting enough appointments,
you will be successful. Yet so many people struggle to convert a conversation with a good prospect into a scheduled appointment. And this is a critical skill, this isn’t just a, it
would be nice to have. You must know this skill. In this video I’m going to show you the seven keys to set an appointment with any prospect in sales. Check it out. (letters clacking) Number one: don’t set an
appointment with anyone! Now, you’re probably saying
to yourself at this point, Mark, what the hell, (laughs)
you’ve literally just said, the title of this video is, how to set an appointment with anyone, and now you’re saying don’t
set an appointment with anyone. What gives? Okay, here’s the thing: great salespeople don’t have the goal of just setting an
appointment with anyone. The goal is to set an appointment
with the right person. I was just talking to a customer of mine who’s in my online
forum, and he was saying, I’m actually having a lot of
success setting appointments with the marketing people
at these companies, but then what I’m finding is that, once I meet with them, they then say, oh, well I really need to get the buy-in from the company owner
before I can move forward. And he said to me, well, what
could I be doing differently? And my immediate response is, you’re setting the appointment
with the wrong person. You want to set your appointment
with the right contact, the key decision-maker,
the person who has access to write a check or at least has budget to pay you for what you can do. So make sure, just as a first step, that the goal isn’t just
to set an appointment with anyone who has a pulse, but instead we want to be sure that
we’re setting appointments with people who at least from the outside seem like they will be qualified
to have a real conversation and ultimately make an effective decision to either move forward
or not move forward. So don’t try to get anyone,
get the right people. Number two: disqualify the
rabble during discovery. Now, this is really big, because again, so many times we get excited to just have a person with a pulse who
is willing to talk to us, who’s willing to sit down with us. And the key thing is, we can’t always know if someone is going to be fully qualified just through a phone call. What we want to do is
we want to at least do some partial discovery even
on that initial phone call to determine whether this person
is really the right person. And so we want to be
asking them some questions that are going to help us understand whether they’re the right person. And there are two ways to look at this. One is of course, we could understand through their title and all of that, but the other is the types of answers that they’re giving us. Are they really down into the weeds, or are they thinking bigger picture? Do they understand the cost of the challenges that they have? Do they have the right kinds
of challenges that you solve? If they don’t, then we want
to disqualify and move on, and if they do, then of course, we want to be setting that appointment. But either way, what we
wanna do is make sure that we understand really
early on in the sales process, is this person likely to be qualified, and thus we should set a meeting, or are they likely to not be a fit, or we already know that they’re not a fit, and thus we disqualify. One of the key distinctions between top-performing sales people and everyone else out there is the ability to disqualify the rabble and thus spend the majority of their time in front of truly qualified prospects. The other powerful knock-on effect of this is that you’re not going to
suddenly come off as needy, because you’re not trying
to just set the appointment with anyone, and that’s gonna be very obvious to the prospect. They’re going to be thinking, wow, this person feels like a professional, because they’re not just
doing anything they can to get into my office. Number three: be a doctor. Now, this is building
off of the previous idea that we just discussed. But I wanna go deeper,
because what so often happens from the perspective of the prospect is they’re meeting with a salesperson and they’re immediately feeling like the person in front of them will do or say anything
just to get the sale, and they’re putting on lots of pressure and they’re doing things
that just feel sales-y. And what we want to do is the
complete opposite of that. We want our prospects to
have the opposite experience of the typical buying experience. And the way we do that is
by behaving like a doctor. Not like a salesperson, but like a doctor. Lemme give you an example. If you go to a doctor, let’s say you go to an orthopedic surgeon
because your back hurts, and you say, hey doc, you
know, my back really hurts. Do you think that doctor’s
gonna come back to you immediately and say, well,
you’re in the right place, we have this incredible procedure called arthroscopic
surgery, it’s unbelievable! We’re going to chip away at the bad stuff, get you back ready and walking, within a week you’re walking, within six weeks you’re jogging it. So you ready to do it? Here, by the way, is the contract. (laughs) No! Of course not! That’s not how a doctor behaves. But that is how so many
salespeople often behave. Prospect comes to ’em,
mentions a challenge, and then the salesperson says,
well, we’ve got the solution, we are the best at this, and
we can do this, this, and this, so would you like to do it? Eek! It’s pretty gross, right? You almost need to take
a mental shower of that. Instead, what we wanna do
is behave like a doctor. So we want to really
diagnose the challenges that our prospects are bringing to us. So a prospect says yeah, you know, we really are having some
issues with our marketing. Instead of saying, well we can solve that, instead say, so tell me a little bit more. Help me understand what’s going on with your marketing right now. Get them engaged, be that doctor. Go more deeply. Number four: understand the upside. You know, one of the keys
to getting an appointment with a prospect is that they have to feel like there is going to be
value in meeting with you. Right, so put yourself for a minute in the shoes of your prospect. They’ve got a million things going, right? And the last thing they need is to spend 45 minutes or
an hour with a salesperson who is likely just going
to waste their time. So what we need to do is, during those initial prospecting calls, we need to help them see the value of potentially working with us, and thus get them to say, yeah, of course that would make
sense to get together. Let’s set a meeting. Right, we need to help them
see what that value is, and one of the key ways to do this is to help them understand the upside. And where a lot of people get this wrong is a lot of salespeople will talk about the ROI that a prospect would get by working with them. But what’s more important
than talking about the ROI is actually getting the
prospect to tell you the upside of fixing a particular problem. Understanding the upside. So let me give you an example. You take it in my world, right? I’m talking to a company
CEO, and they’re saying, yeah, you know, our sales
team really just isn’t firing on all cylinders. And so I ask a question
like, well, George, if you were able to get your sales people to be firing on all
cylinders like you mentioned, what do you think that would mean in additional revenue to the organization? And the CEO says, oh, well, I think that we could easily be doing an additional five
million dollars in sales. Timeout: do you see what
just happened there? I asked a question that seemed like a pretty benign question, and I got the prospect to actually start to do their own math, to talk about the value that my solution
could potentially bring to them. Now, they’re not drawing a direct line where they’re saying,
well, if I bring Mark in, I will get another five million dollars. But what I am getting
him to think about is, okay, this problem really means something, so if I could solve this, and
Mark is a potential solution, then that could mean an
additional five million dollars in revenue. That is the upside value
of working with me, in that particular situation. And every single selling situation can do something like this. Maybe it’s not upside revenue, maybe it’s decreased costs, maybe it’s additional profitability. But every solution is
going to have an upside. What you want to do,
though, is get your prospect to articulate what the upside is to solving their challenges. If you do that, suddenly the value, the obvious value of working with you or at least of setting that meeting becomes incredibly apparent. And so you’re not gonna
be scraping and clawing for that, just give me
five minutes of your time. Instead, you can set a
meeting that’s an hour long, because geez, you’ve really
gotten their attention, and now they understand the
value of meeting with you. Number five: can I make a recommendation? Those simple words are so powerful when it comes to setting a meeting. Now, (laughs) I’m gonna be frank with you. I’m giving you some
real secret sauce here, but the phrase “Can I
make a recommendation?” is so incredibly powerful
when it comes time to transitioning into
scheduling that appointment. And here’s the reason why. Let’s say you’ve gone
through the conversation and you’ve gotten them
to articulate the upside and you’ve determined that this is someone that you definitely want to
be setting a meeting with, you then transition
into setting the meeting by starting with, “Can
I make a recommendation? “George, could I make a recommendation?” And what that’s naturally going to do is it’s gonna cause that to
say, of course, yes, right? And at the same time it’s
setting you up as the expert, because now you’ve made a recommendation, they’ve affirmatively
responded with “yes,” and so now they’re completely
open to that recommendation, and then you would say
something along the lines of, why don’t we schedule an appointment? We’d get together face to face, it’d take about 45 minutes, and we can dig into some of these
issues much more deeply, and I could share with
you some best practices on how we might go about
solving those challenges. Does that make sense? And naturally, they’re going to say, assuming you’ve done a
good job up til then, they’re going to say something
that sounds like “yes.” Now, if they don’t say yes, we’ll talk about that in a minute, how you’d respond to that. But by starting that transition
into setting an appointment with “Can I make a recommendation,” you’re going to have a
much higher likelihood of ultimately getting that
appointment by starting there, rather than doing something
cheesy and common like, hey, George, you know,
I’m gonna be in your area on Thursday and Monday,
would you have 10 minutes where I could get together with you and show you some ideas? Super sales-y and cheesy, right? Everyone’s doing that crap. Drop that. Instead say, “Can I
make a recommendation?” Number six: always
schedule a clear next step. This is so important for sales in general and it’s so important for
actually getting that appointment. I want you to make a
commitment to yourself that you are never going to allow any selling situation to
end with an unclear outcome. And what’s amazing is that
salespeople are doing this all the time. They’re on the phone with
a prospect, and it doesn’t, you know, it kind of ends
in wishy-washy place, and the prospect gives
them something like, hey, you know, why don’t
you call back in a month, and you say, oh, okay, sure, and then you know, it just ends
in this really weak outcome. Instead, cut that crap off. Instead, make sure that there
is always a clear next step, at any point in the sales process, but especially at the beginning. So you want there to be a
clear, scheduled next step where there is a counter-invite that goes out to the
prospect, and they accept it, even if it means, could you
give me a call back in a month, say something along the lines
of, you know what, George, I’d be happy to do that,
do you actually have your calendar in front of you where we could actually schedule something so that way we don’t have
all that back and forth and miss each other. And if they say no to that, then you know you’re in
trouble, but if they say yes, now you’ve at least got
something in the books. On the other hand, a
much stronger situation, of course, is, if you’re
getting together face to face, make sure that it is in the calendar and that there is a calendar invite that has gone out to them and that they have accepted
that calendar invite. We never wanna just be
dropping by someone’s office. We always want to have that
clear and scheduled next step. Number seven: have a contingency
for when they push back. This is so key, because so often we’re in a selling situation, and the prospect gets
a little bit squirrely, and they say, you know, this
was a great conversation, but the timing just isn’t right, you know? Could you call me back,
maybe in six months? And a lot of sales
people go into something that sounds like, oh, yeah, sure, happy to call you back in six months, you know, would it make sense to call you on a Monday or a Thursday, or whatever weak, weak
response that they have. Instead, I want you to
have a contingency in place for when they push back on
setting that appointment. Now again, leading up til
now, we have to be sure that we’re doing everything we can to really show the value
of getting together, but let’s say they do push back and they say, you know what,
I’m really busy this month, could we maybe get together next month, maybe shoot me an email in a month and we could set something up? Instead I want you to have a contingency that sounds something along the lines of, you know what George, I really
appreciate your saying this, but having done this for a long time, usually people tell me that because they just want
a nice way of saying they’re not really interested
in ever getting together. Is that what you see happening here? Now, that takes guts, but if you do that, what you’re going to
find is they’re gonna say something along the lines of either, yes, you know what, this just
doesn’t make sense right now, and then you can kind of put it to bed. On the other hand, they
may say, no no no, really, I’m busy, but I’d really
like to get together, but just this month doesn’t sound good. And then you can come back with, okay, you know what, that
sounds totally reasonable. How about we put something,
then, in the calendar for next month, and so we can just avoid that back and forth. We’ll get together then, but at least we’ll have it in the calendar so this doesn’t just fall off the radar. Does that sound reasonable? What you’re going to find is that a lot of people are
going to respond positively to that, simply because
you used that contingency. It takes guts, but if you do that, you’re going to get a
lot more appointments, and quite frankly, if someone’s
being wishy-washy with you on the phone about
scheduling an appointment, you don’t have much to lose, ’cause they either want
nothing to do with you or they do want something to do with you and they’re just busy, and
at least get that meeting on the books. So there are the seven
keys to set an appointment with any prospect in sales. I wanna hear from you:
which of these ideas did you find most useful? Be sure to share down below
in the comments section to get involved in the conversation. And if you enjoyed this video, then I have an awesome, free e-book on 25 tips to crush your sales goals. Just click right here, this
little image right here, to get it instantly. Seriously, just click right here. Also, if you got some value, please like this video below on YouTube, and be sure to subscribe to my channel by clicking my little face right there to get access to a new video
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33 comments

Thanks for keeping it real Marc, no one quite puts the common sense, emotion, and passion behind the science of sales like you do.

Marc, I tried to register with LimeLeads but they won't accept my Gmail email address which is the only one that I use.

Hey Marc, just want to say thank you for the tips on this video, I have been getting a lot of push back at the point of setting an appointment, the contingency plan makes rational sense and I have incorporated it in my script.

One question, would you say it's normal for a prospect not to accept a meeting off the first? Any suggestions will be most welcomed.

Great information, Mark!! That last talking point does take Guts; and like you said at that point-"What do you have to lose?"

Thanks Marc, these points are cool and clear. The really help take sells to a whole nother level. Thank you for sharing the secret sauce!

You must have posture inside your mind, before it will display in the physical realm. Its one thing among many others i got from this video.

I love the " can I make a recommendation?" Also the part where you tell them let's just get the appointment on the calendar for next month so we wont do this whole back and forth thing and falls through the cracks

Sir please can you guide me how to get appointment for free products on cold calling most people rejected the offer

You provide REAL VALUE. Thanks for sharing your knowledge Marc. I appreciate it. This will help my team tenfold 🔥

Great video as always Marc. Do you have any tips on what you do at the appointment? After you set the appointment, I know the goal is to qualify them, but it would be great if you have a video like this where you explain the main goal of the appointment. Thank you.

I will be using some of these in my interview tomorrow morning!

I loved the “be a doctor” approach.

Thanks for the tips.

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