Dreamforce is always a great conference and TimeTrade enjoys participating each year. That’s partly because of the great venue and wonderful sessions that are offered, but its mostly because Dreamforce is the perfect opportunity to talk to customers, find out what their pain points are, and have open and honest discussions about how to solve them. It’s one of the many reasons we enjoy being a Salesforce partner and why we willingly embrace the Ohana movement.
Speaking of pain points, think of the last time you went to see your doctor or dentist. I recall exactly my experience as I was leaving my physician’s office and had to schedule a follow-up. The receptionist had my information in front of her and she simply asked, “When would you like to come back and see us?”
It caused me to pause for a moment, because she had just turned the tables on my traditional experience. Instead of saying something to the effect of, “We have Thursday at 4, Friday at 2 and Monday at 9 available…which one of those times works for you?” she was engaging me as a valued customer and patient, and confirmed that I was the one that she was most interested in accommodating.
How often does this happen in your professional life? When you are engaging with sales, marketing, support or customer success professionals, are you offered the opportunity to choose when you’d like to meet? Or are you asked to choose from 3 times offered, generally selected because these are the best times for the other person to meet? There’s a big difference, and while it may seem small, it really means everything.
In my discussion yesterday titled, “Be a Scheduling Hero: Accelerating Sales Cycles with TimeTrade,” I encouraged the audience to “flip the script” on how they engage with prospects in their pipeline. I suggested that the audience use our Scheduler product and allow their prospects to book a time most convenient for them because it does two important things:
- It allows the customer to choose a time that works best for them, which shows that you value their time. Doing so also increases attendance, and we’ve seen instances where our customers report a 40% increase in attendance rates. (No more no shows!)
- It also eliminates entirely the back and forth associated with manual meeting scheduling and with many other automated meeting tools. Offer up 3 meeting times and I have to choose 1 of 3? It’s not likely that scenario is going to work all the time…or even most of the time, depending how busy your prospects are.
When I visited our booth after my presentation, I was pleased to hear several people mention how they liked the idea of “flipping the script” on scheduling meetings. We’re all for that as we’ve seen the resulting sales outcomes for our customers. (For example, a 300% increase in rep “at bats.”) As I was walking away, I was even more pleased when watching one of our own sales people engaging with a prospective buyer. As he was scheduling a follow-up meeting I heard him say, “I’ll send you an invitation. You pick the date and time that works for you, and I’ll be there.”
That’s how you flip the script and put your customers first.