For individuals in the sales industry, ensuring clients hear what you are saying (selling) is a critical component for success—but the proverbial sales pitch can feel like a 90-mph fastball as you rush through your presentation in the usual limited meeting time.
Yet, the art of selling might be more about the art of listening rather than speaking. Building a loyal customer is like building a relationship. It’s a two-way conversation of hearing what the client needs and providing solutions they can trust and use.
Populous, one of the world leaders in innovative architecture has mastered the art of listening by building a large-scale brainstorming event gathering clients from various sectors. These collaborations, called “Imagine That,” give attendees and the company a more comprehensive understanding of trends shaping their industry, while the meaningful design workshops will certainly be used to impact Populous’ approach to design in the future.
Don’t have the resources to gather clients for a big brainstorming session? Try one of these alternatives:
- At your next client meeting, try to start by engaging in a broader conversation about the goals, trends, and business challenges the client faces in the coming months.
- Can’t fly your team in? Introduce your company’s research experts through a short teleconference or on FaceTime or Google Hangout
- Send a quick note and share relevant research that your team recently published.
- Develop a short online survey clients can take. There are some simple online survey tools you can use to create and gather data.
- Join in on social media sites to post pictures of happy clients, new products, and show customers what your team is up to with photo essays.
- Check out online feedback and message boards. Joining IAVM gives Allied Members access to VenueNet, IAVM’s online community. VenueNet is a great place to get the industry pulse and suggest solutions to questions posted on discussion boards.
Listening can act as a powerful tool to encourage innovation. By listening to your client you may be the first person in your organization to realize it’s time for a change in products.
One of the best events to hear what venue managers are saying about the industry is VenueConnect, IAVM’s annual conference and trade show. This year’s event will be in Portland, Or., July 26-29. The conference brings in venue professionals from around the world and many are the decision makers for their venues.
Make sure your company reserves a trade show booth and signs up to get connected one-on-one with venue buyers through the association’s new hosted buyer program, IAVM DirectConnect, where venue’s tell us what they plan to buy and how much they plan to spend and you set up a series of short meetings during the conference to help them accomplish their buying needs!