Until last week I was a Tupperware party virgin. My life has never revolved in circles where a Tupperware party was de rigeur. With some excitement, I went to my friend’s house, cashed up, and ready to buy. Fast-forward three long hours later, I returned home empty handed.
What happened? Here I was, an eager prospect, ready to say yes to any sales offer. I actively participated in the Tupperware party system, with its well-designed patter and process, all designed to funnel the guests to buy.
I went home, and thumbed the catalogue wondering why those plastic containers would never grace my home. And then it came to me, I wasn’t feeling the love.
I started to wonder, how often have I, or my clients, had a willing and cashed up prospect, only for them to walk away with no sale. As I cast my mind back over many mentoring sessions with my clients, I realised it happened more often than we liked to admit.
For whatever reason, we managed to turn a hot prospect into a cold, disappointed ‘might have been’. No one feels good when that happens. And without clients our business will not grow.
As I sipped my tea, I reflected on the long evening that had been. A room filled with vivacious, interesting women, a lovely hostess and home, and the Tupperware lady and her wares. All the right components for success.
But there was one missing ingredient. Engagement.
Take a moment to think about how you interact with your prospects – how engaged are you with them, their needs, and what they desire as an outcome of interacting with your service or product?
I thank the Tupperware Lady, who was trying hard, as she gave me the chance to observe how she could have shifted her behaviour to make more sales. If you feel that your hot prospects are slipping away, try out some of the strategies below:
1. A warm opening
Whether you ‘meet’ your prospects on the phone, face to face or even on your website, are you giving them the warmest greeting possible. Do you take the time to pause, smile, and really acknowledge them, or is it more of a fleeting hello, how are you, before you get on with the task at hand?
Engagement starts at the second of contact…it will set the scene for the rest of the interaction.
2. How can you help?
Clearly if I was at the Tupperware party I wanted to buy plastic containers…but it’s not quite that simple. I wanted to have a new system to organize my pantry to be more efficient. If she had engaged me in a conversation about what I was interested in, as opposed to getting on with her patter, then she would have known to make a big deal of the products for kitchen organisation. Instead, I got a great lecture on a slicer…yawn…..
Assuming you know what your prospects want will make them feel as if they are part of a sales process you have. You want to reach in, and really find out what they want. In that way, you can craft the ideal solution for them.
3. Wanting the best for me
When we are passionate about what we do and what we sell, we know the difference it will make for our customers. We know that it will solve the problems they outlined.
I felt that The Tupperware Lady was not concerned about the outcome for me, of buying her products. I have a real need to have a better organized kitchen to save me time and hassle, but she thought I wanted containers. When I left empty handed, there was nothing said. There was no conversation about what would I do about my kitchen clutter, or what other solutions may be. I felt disengaged, and apathetic about Tupperware.
This experience has made me up my game when I talk with new prospects about the possibility of working together. Doing this, has also reinvigorated my passion to do the work I do, as even in those early interactions, the engagement is high. And yes, that does lead to higher sales.
I would love you to experiment with increasing your engagement. Let me know how you get on below.