Quite often I mention how important it is to have an agenda for every client interaction. The 5 Es are a great example. They are the groundwork for every client interaction, and after each meeting, I write down the notes relating to them. There is no script, but there is always a plan.
Energize yourself, your presentation, your materials, and because of that, your meeting. You don’t need cheerleader-level spunk, but it needs to be clear that you’re happy to meet with your client, and that you’re paying close attention to the conversation. Don’t ask your client to repeat themselves if you can possibly avoid it!
Encourage the client to share long and short term goals for themselves or their company (depending on which is the customer.) Goals are why people buy. They want a hole, not a drill. Make sure you know what their goals are, because it tells you what to sell them, and how.
Educate the client about how your product will meet their goals. If your product make beautiful holes quickly, talk about holes. Talk about product reliability in terms of “security in hole-making for years to come.” Answer questions about the product, but don’t drone on like an infomercial! The client cares about reaching their goal, and moving on to the next one.
Engage the customer on a human level by dropping the jargon as much as possible. Say “hassle” instead of “impediment,” or any other opportunity to humanize the conversation. Talk to people like they’re people. Jargon is necessary in most businesses some of the time. Humanity is necessary all of the time.
Empower your customer to reach their goals by supplying only the right products, always at the right price. If you over-sell, you will probably not earn repeat business. Your client will have an unrealistic impression of the cost and complexity of your solution. If you under-sell, your customer won’t reach their goal. And if you overcharge, they will find out at some point. Not only will repeat business be in jeopardy, your reputation may be as well.
There they are – the 5 Es. Use them, and watch your sales numbers grow!