Meeting one-on-one with farmer customers is important and an effective selling strategy. Scouting a customer’s field that is using your products is a valuable opportunity that you should take advantage of for retaining your customer and for future sales. The following are important dos and don’ts when meeting with farmer customers and prospects:
- Never have poor in-person etiquette. Do not chew gum, eat, mumble or not speak clearly. Any of these things can hurt your chances of making a sale. Looking at your cell phone while meeting is another don’t. Treat your clients or prospects with respect.
- Don’t jump to conclusions and never be negative. Just because a customer has possibly rejected either a meeting or product purchase does not necessarily mean the door is shut.
- Never discuss anything inappropriate. It’s okay to socialize with your client, but keep it professional. Avoid over sharing and never ask intrusive questions that may make the customer feel uncomfortable.
- Don’t claim to know something you don’t. There’s nothing wrong with saying you do not have an answer but will get one as soon as possible.
- Do not be defensive. Sometimes when it comes to pricing you may feel the need to defend it. Simply remind your customer of its value and benefits. Practice different approaches to overcome a price concern/objection
- Don’t get too comfortable. You should never stop prospecting even if you are happy about your client base.
- Never wing it. A failure to plan is a plan to fail.
- Be prepared. Have a plan for the conversation, know what you want to accomplish before you meet.
- Ask questions and always listen. Try to ask questions that will make your client stop and think, but also take the time to stop and listen to the client.
- Bring value. Focus on the difference your retail location and products can make. Tie this back to the value for your customers’ farm business.
- Focus on solutions. What can you do to help a client or prospect fix a problem they have?
- Be honest. Communicate honestly about any issues and offer options that are available.
- Always follow up. Contact your client shortly after your meeting to stay on the prospects mind.
- Put in the time. Do some research before you call a potential customer. Take notes and keep detailed files to help you stay up to date on their operation. Send a quick text throughout the season to check in.