Coffee Meetings and Beyond: 3 Ways to Close Your Sale When You Can’t Do Lunch
- Kristi Hines
- 3 Min Read
Are you having trouble setting up a sales meeting with a prospective customer? It’s not always easy to organize a lunch with a client, so you may need to shake things up. Surprise your prospective clients with these three out of the box sales meeting ideas.
1. Coffee Meetings
Coffee, or rather the caffeine in coffee, has many benefits for both the brain and the body. It boosts your mental energy and wakes you up. It increases your ability to focus. Hence, coffee meetings can be perfect for a sales pitch. Your potential customers will be alert and ready to consume your information.
According to US News & World Report, the number of Americans who drink coffee is on the rise, so coffee meetings are a perfect alternative. And, they don’t require the time commitment of lunch meetings. Best of all, coffee meetings can happen anytime during the day. You can meet before, during, or after work, or any time when you think someone might need that extra bolt of energy. A coffee meeting is always convenient, and easier to pencil into your client’s schedule. If they’re going to be drinking coffee anyway, why not listen to a sales pitch at the same time?
Whether you propose coffee meetings at a cafe nearby, bring coffee to them, or serve them the at your own office, you will be more likely to get a positive response. If catering your coffee meetings, be sure to pair the coffee with an appropriate snack based on the time of day. You can try bagels in the morning, fruit in the afternoon, or cookies in the evening.
2. Breakfast Meetings
You know the old adage that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. While Popular Science says the jury is still out, one thing is for sure. If you can meet a prospective customer for breakfast, you will likely be the first meeting of the day. There is no inbox, no distractions, and no tasks for the day yet. Suggest a breakfast meeting for your prospective customer to get ahead of things at a convenient time.
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The two easiest ways you can get a sales appointment on the calendar in the morning is to cater a breakfast meeting at your office or at your prospective customer’s, depending on their schedule. There are lots of great breakfast ideas, or it can be as simple as bringing in bagels and juice, breakfast sandwiches, or a healthy fruit selection.
In addition to catching your prospective customer’s attention before the rest of the work day overwhelms them, you will be offering a great start to the day. Why wouldn’t they be enthusiastic to hear your pitch?
3. Happy Hour Meetings
In the evening hours, your potential clients are looking forward to heading home to their families. So dinner isn’t always an option. If you can’t grab lunch, capitalize on that in-between time: happy hour.
Depending on your prospective customer, what you are selling, and what liquor laws are in your state (yes, you may need a license), you may choose to make it an in-house alcohol included or alcohol-free event. The goal isn’t to get a drunken yes to your pitch, but rather to offer your ideas and solutions in a more casual atmosphere.
While you could go to the local pub, talking with the sports crowd in the background isn’t going to be an ideal situation to focus on your message. Catering your own happy hour event, if possible, is quintessential. This allows you to control the type of alcohol served (if any) and offer a lineup of appetizer items in an environment free from too many casual distractions. Plus, people are less likely to get a little tipsy in an office compared to a bar, making it a better place to conduct a productive sales meeting.
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