How to Use Automation to Set Up Sales Meetings

This is the blog transcript of our video “How to Use Automation to Set Up Sales Meetings”. If you’d like to see more of our videos, you can subscribe to our YouTube channel here.

Ok so all this talk of automation is great…but I want meetings. How is all of this going to help me get sales meetings?

Hey everyone, I’m Ian Campbell, CEO of Mission Suite. Before we jump into today’s video, do me a favor and hit the subscribe button and ring the bell so that you’re notified whenever we post new videos.

Obviously I talk a lot about sales automation. 

A lot.

And it’s not surprising because it’s something that I really enjoy. If I’m being honest, I do like to geek out on it a little bit. And eventually, almost without fail, as I’m talking about the details of automation, people’s eyes inevitably glaze over.

It’s almost like I can hear their inner monologue saying “ok, get to the freakin point already. What is this actually going to do for me?”

And I get it. Most people don’t need to talk about automation just for the sake of automation. And they DEFINITELY don’t need to implement automation just for the sake of automation.

When most people implement some sort of sales automation system, they want to know how it’s actually going to benefit them.

I know, it’s weird right?

OK, maybe not.

So I thought I’d do a bit of a deep dive into how automation can actually help you book sales meetings with new prospects in today’s video.

So buckle up, and let’s dive in!

Follow Up from Networking Events

First thing’s first, we’ll talk about one of my favorite things – networking.

Much like automation, building a huge network isn’t something that most people do just because they want people to know who they are.

Obviously there are exceptions to that rule but, for the most part, it’s just not the way that it goes.

People build a network because it’s a way for them to get exposure for the products or services that they provide. And ultimately that awareness turns into sales meetings.

Hopefully.

But something that I’ve talked about over and over and over again is that just going to networking events or networking groups is probably not going to actually get you meetings. 

The meetings all come from the follow up that you do AFTER those events and groups.

So, with that in mind, how can automation help you book meetings from networking events? Well this part is actually pretty easy. 

If we start with the understanding that the best way you’re going to find sales meetings from the networking that you’re doing is from the follow up, then it stands to reason that the only way you’re going to get those meetings is if you actually send the email to follow up with someone that you met at an event instead of just setting their business card to the right of your laptop.

And, with an automated follow up system (like the one that is built into Mission Suite), you can simply add that person to your CRM and select a pre-built follow up method and let the follow up happen for you.

One of the most exciting things that I ever had happen when I first started doing this was when I got an email back from someone agreeing to a follow up meeting that I had no memory of emailing because the system actually did it for me.

It was so cool, and something that really changed my perspectives on all of this stuff.

Follow Up on Cold Prospecting

Canvassing, cold calling, or whatever person to person prospecting that you’re doing is similar to networking.

Not so much in the tactic itself, most people strongly prefer one to the other (typically networking is preferred to cold calling), but in the way that you have to follow up.

As an example, let’s take a look at canvassing. When you’re out canvassing, the job is to get into a door, find out who the decision maker is, and find out how you can get in touch with them. If you can meet them, it’s a bonus, but as long as you walk away with a specific name and their contact information, you got a win.

Similarly with cold calling (at least for the first call), you’re trying to find out who the decision maker is and a more direct method of reaching them without having to deal with an auto attendant or receptionist. Obviously you want to talk to someone here, but again, if you at least know who you need to reach and how you can do so, that’s a win for a first call.

So how do you get to the second call?

The top performing sales people that I know put together some sort of a multi-touch campaign to pursue and land a meeting with those targets. They also spend a lot of time targeting to make sure that they’re pursuing the right companies, but that’s a topic for another video.

Anyway, this multi-touch campaign that they execute on needs to be managed somehow because if you’re going to try to do it all in your head, you may as well just forget it and move on to the next person.

Managing the timing of these things in your head and trying to manually enter everything in your CRM is typically a recipe for disaster. We’re human and forgetful.

Using automation, however, you know that your emails are being sent out on time, you know that you’re being reminded when you need to make a phone call, and you can see the entire history when it’s happening.

Again, getting meetings is all about follow up. Isn’t it just easier to automate it?

Hey, let me know your thoughts on using sales automation down in the comments. Do you use it all the time, do you think it’s too impersonal, is this the first time you’re considering it?

I want to know what you’re thinking and, while you’re there, go ahead and give this video a quick thumbs up to let me know you’re getting some good ideas out of it.

Follow Up on Referrals

Awesome, someone passed you a referral. Now what?

Sure, you responded to the email introduction asking for an intro meeting or phone call. But what if they never get back to you?

Obviously we pursue referrals so aggressively because they’re low hanging fruit, right? When someone makes that intro, that person is significantly more likely to say yes to the meeting. But people get busy, and sometimes they never do end up getting back to you.

Are you just going to let that opportunity slip away?

As much as I’m sure you’d love to say that you’d never do that I’m guessing that, if you’re honest with yourself, that’s probably not the case. I’m betting that you’ve dropped the ball on more referrals than you care to remember because, just like them, you get busy too.

How do I know? Well, if I’m being honest, there are STILL times that I drop the ball on following up on referrals that people send me. It happens a lot less often now, though, because I have an automated system to manage the follow up for me.

Of course, I still have to remember to add people into that automated system, but once they’re in there, I can be confident that they were followed up with. And that helps that referral partner know that they can refer to me in the future without worrying about me flaking on the people they sent my way.

Keep in Touch with Referral Partners

This is another topic that I admittedly have the tendency to jump up and down on because it’s SO important if you want to grow your business using referrals.

Referral partners don’t become “partners” until you build a partnerSHIP. The only way to build that partnership is to consistently meet with that person so that you can get to know them, get to like them, and get to trust them so that you can ultimately refer them business.

And they have to do the same thing! They need to know you, like you, and ultimately trust you in order to send you referrals. That means that you have to show up consistently and then follow through when you say that you want to continue to get together with them.

The problem is that it’s so easy to talk yourself out of sending off that reconnection email asking them to get together again. In my experience, it always feels like “well I just saw them a couple weeks ago” and it becomes really easy to skip the task reminder you set for yourself.

I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again. Running into someone in line for the bar at the last networking happy hour does NOT count as relationship building!

You need to connect and talk about wins and losses and get caught up with one another and discuss specifically how you can help each other. Maybe you can even show up to your meeting with them with some specific names that they could introduce you to.

But that only happens if you remember to keep in touch with them and invite them to coffee, lunch, a drink, etc.

With a good automation system (like the one built into Mission Suite), you can set those folks up to automatically get an email once every few months (or however often you want to meet with them) inviting them to coffee (or whatever you’d like to do).

It’s amazing how much more frequently you’ll end up meeting with people who either know someone who needs what you’re selling.

Follow Up from Inbound Leads

And finally, the holy grail of marketing based lead generation, inbound leads.

There’s nothing like getting a lead coming in from your website or a landing page who’s clearly expressed interest in what you’re selling.

But the longer you wait to respond to those leads, the less likely you’re actually going to get a meeting, let alone any business, from them. I think the average time for a response is something like 6 minutes, and if you can respond that quickly, your chances of getting business from that lead increase exponentially.

Do you think you’ll really be available to respond to every inbound lead within 6 minutes? 

Unless that’s literally your only job, it seems pretty doubtful, so it’s worth setting up some sort of automated personalized response with some sort of next step.

Something like a more extensive intake form, a meeting request, or a link to your booking calendar to set up an appointment with you work incredibly well.

Of course, you can also create a multi-touch and multi-channel campaign with this kind of lead, making your odds of making a sale that much higher.

Your Turn

So if you want to learn more about how you can create some of these automated systems so that you can get more sales meetings from the effort that you’re already putting into your prospecting, drop down to the description and check out the link to register for a Mission Suite demo. 

Hey I hope you got something out of this video. And if you did, go ahead and give it a thumbs up and maybe a share so that others can see it too. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our channel and ring the bell so that you’re notified whenever we post new videos and while you’re at it, check out these videos too!

We’ll see you next time around!

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