As a business owner, you’ve got a lot to juggle. If you’re not using your time efficiently, you risk lost revenue opportunities and your company’s bottom line. As our friend April from Parks and Rec likes to say:
There’s not a single lie in that statement, April. However, one part of that sentence is what we’re focused on here: time is money! When leads don’t show up for their appointment times, they’re wasting your time and your money as well.
So, how can you improve show rates of scheduled sales appointments? If you want to reduce no-show rates, it’s essential that you:
Give Leads a Reason To Not Cancel Appointments
If you want a lead to attend a scheduled sales appointment, you must give them a reason to show up. Setting an agenda before the meeting allows you to show how your business is beneficial for their company’s long-term success.
After scheduling the sales meeting, you should send the lead an email with a brief outline regarding:
- The lead’s current pain points and challenges
- How you plan on relieving those problems
- What you plan to go over throughout the meeting
- Next steps after the initial sales meeting
As you set this plan of attack, remember to set aside some time for the lead to ask questions about your B2B product or service. This encourages the lead to be more comfortable with the meeting and makes it feel more like a conversation rather than a sales presentation.
Additionally, sending an agenda before the meeting gives the lead a chance to suggest more topics, allowing them to feel more in charge of the conversation. This also allows you to be more prepared for the meeting, increasing the likelihood of converting them from a lead into a loyal customer.
Send Automated Appointment Reminders
Automated appointment reminders are becoming increasingly popular, whether it be sales or a primary care appointment. Since many people have easy access to technology, these automated appointment reminders have significantly reduced no-show rates.
Automated reminders are ideal because not only do they remind the lead of the appointment, but they also save you and your sales team the extra step of manually sending the lead a reminder. Many companies use customer relationship management (CRM) platforms to send automatic reminders. A CRM platform allows you and your sales team to manage every sales and marketing process from a single system.
Automated appointment reminders can be sent by email, text message, or phone call. Additionally, there are appointment setting tools and technologies, like Calendly, to help you productively set sales appointments.
If you’re not sure what to say when confirming an appointment, consider the following example:
“REMINDER: Appointment With [YOUR NAME] From [YOUR BUSINESS] on [DATE] at [TIME].
Please contact us at [YOUR PHONE NUMBER] or [YOUR EMAIL] if you need to reschedule.”
However, if you want to go for a more personable approach, consider using this example:
“Hi, [LEAD NAME]! This is [YOUR NAME] over at [YOUR BUSINESS]. We’re looking forward to meeting with you tomorrow [DATE] at [TIME]. If something comes up and you need to reschedule, please contact us at [YOUR PHONE NUMBER] or [YOUR EMAIL]. Talk with you tomorrow!”
Reduce Waiting Time Between the Appointment Set Date and the Sales Meeting
When a lead agrees to a sales appointment after months of follow-up from your sales reps, the lead’s excitement for the meeting won’t last long. If you want to improve the show rates of your sales appointments, you need to schedule the meeting as soon as possible to keep the momentum alive.
Ideally, the rule of thumb is to schedule sales meetings two to three days after the appointment set date—or sooner if they’re looking for an immediate solution. However, as we know, work schedules can be hectic and two to three days out isn’t always feasible. If the lead isn’t available to meet in the next few days, schedule the meeting a week out. To keep no-show rates low, it’s vital that you never schedule an appointment more than two weeks out so you can keep the lead engaged and interested in your company.
Present the Lead With Additional Materials Before the Appointment
A lot can happen in a business between the day the appointment is set and the actual appointment date, which is why it’s essential that your sales reps keep sending the lead information in the meantime. As your sales reps send additional materials, they need to consider the wants, interests, and pain points of the lead.
For example, let’s say you’re an MSP who sets a sales appointment with a lead interested in cloud migration services. If they’re interested in these services specifically, you wouldn’t want to send them sell sheets or infographics about ongoing IT support, would you? This could encourage the lead to skip the meeting, since you couldn’t send them information relevant to their needs.
While there are a variety of sales enablement assets you can send leads, some marketing pieces may be more effective than others. Before the appointment, it may be most beneficial to email the lead a digital copy of your company brochure, sell sheets with more info about the product or service they’re interested in, and case studies of companies you’ve worked with similar to theirs. If they see the impact you’ve made on businesses like theirs, who’s to say you couldn’t do the same for them?
While implementing these tactics to improve show rates won’t guarantee zero no-shows, it’s a step in the right direction. Leads cancel or no-show sales appointments all the time—it’s inevitable. It’s also important to consider other obligations that may come up, such as family emergencies or crucial business matters that require their full attention.
When you get no-showed by a lead, don’t take it personally. Instead, consider these approaches:
- Follow up with the lead: Following up to make sure the lead is okay shows that you care about them and their well-being. It also shows that you were looking forward to meeting with them to discuss a potential partnership.
- Select a new date and time: When you follow up with a lead, select a new date and time to meet for the sales presentation so it’s no longer a no-show, but a rescheduled sales appointment. Therefore, it has no negative impact on your company’s number of no-shows.
- Filter them back into the pipeline: If you’re struggling to get in contact with the lead, putting them back in the sales pipeline may be your best option. If they’re a top-of-funnel lead anyways, it may be in your best interest to reach back out when they’re at the end of their sales cycle.
Luckily, email appointment setting professionals know exactly what to say to no-show clients. At Sapper Consulting, our email marketing experts are well-equipped to schedule sales appointments via email and follow up if they no-show a meeting.
If you need a hand scheduling high-quality sales appointments, contact the experts at Sapper Consulting!