To Fix a Lack of Customer Meetings You Just Need To Make a Few Tiny Changes

by | 9 Oct 23

OK, this is for all my fellow salespeople and CSMs! I want to talk about something important today. I know many of you are dealing with dry pipelines or struggling to meet those tough upsell and cross-sell targets. It can be frustrating.

But here’s what I want to tell you: it’s time to change how you see yourself in this situation. If you keep identifying as someone stuck in a rut, it’s going to be tough to turn things around. Trust me, I’ve been there too.

So, it would be great if the whole company changed overnight to fix these issues. But let’s face it, that’s easier said than done. So, instead of waiting for change to happen, why not take matters into your own hands?

It’s time to step up and become the driving force for change. Believe me, it’s not just about benefiting yourself, but also your customers. When you make a positive impact on their lives, you become a superstar salesperson or a superhero CSM.

But how do you do it? Well, it’s all about changing your self-identity and setting goals that align with who you want to be. Once you have that goal in mind, it’s time to work out the steps to get there.
Sounds intriguing? Hopefully! Ha! Because in this blog, I’m going to share practical strategies to help you make that transformation.

So, grab a cup of coffee, settle in, and get ready for some game-changing insights. It’s time to make a genuine difference in the way education vendors approach their sales activities with schools, MATs, colleges, universities, and adult learning providers.

Table of Contents

Use these links to jump straight to the part of the article that interests you most.

> A Quick-ish Story
> Change Your Mindset (It’s Easier Than You Think)
> How To Implement The Change
> My Timetable For Getting More Meetings

A Quick-ish Story

Let me share a story with you, one that many of my former colleagues will remember. Back when I ran an EdTech business from 2005 to 2019, we experienced some serious growth after about four years. That meant we needed to revamp our recruiting process and bring in new talent – fast.

Now, this story isn’t about our recruitment process itself. It’s about my communication habits with our new team members during their onboarding. As a co-founder of a small, rapidly growing business, I wore many hats – bookkeeping, product development, sales demos, and training sessions all fell under my responsibilities.

Picture this: our talented new recruits were in the office, eager for guidance and help to excel in their roles. They would call me on my mobile phone for advice. But here’s the catch – more often than not, I couldn’t answer their calls. Why? Well, I’d either be in conversation with a headteacher or assessment coordinator, or I’d be delivering a training session to teachers.

And here’s where the mistake happened. I didn’t call them back. I delayed their progress in settling into their roles and providing exceptional service to our customers. But the worst part? I started identifying as the person who never picked up their phone. It became a running joke in the office, something we laughed about and bonded over.

But one day, something clicked. I realised how big of a mistake I was making. I was letting down my team and our customers. Those office jokes were merely masking the problem. I knew I had to change, and quickly. Nobody else could do it for me – it was up to me to make that change.

I needed to shift my identity when it came to answering calls. I had to change my habits, starting with changing my internal perception of who I was. Simply saying, “I’ll start picking up calls” wasn’t enough. I needed to truly believe that I would call people back and provide the support and guidance they deserved.

So, every day, I told myself, “I am the person who ALWAYS calls people back.” I couldn’t promise to pick up every single call – that wouldn’t be realistic. But I could commit to always returning those calls. And slowly but surely, that belief became a part of who I was.

After about a week, it became natural for me to call people back. When I finished a session in a school, I would check my missed calls, get in my car, hook my phone to my hands-free (back then, it wasn’t automatic!), and call back every single person who had reached out to me. Without fail, I provided the help and advice they needed.

And you know what? Today, nobody even mentions that I used to struggle with answering calls. That identity is long gone. The jokes have faded away. It’s just not who I am anymore. I’ve transformed my habits and become the person who always comes through for others.

And this applies to you too. If you are that salesperson or CSM who is struggling to get the meetings you need to hit your new business and/or up-sell and cross-sell targets, you need to work out how to change your mindset and take control of the problem. That’s what we’ll cover next.

Change Your Mindset (It’s Easier Than You Think!)

Buckle up because I’ve got a game-changing tip for you. We all know that being in this role can feel like a wild rollercoaster ride. It’s like being responsible for the entire revenue generation engine of your business. Talk about pressure!

But fear not, because I’ve got a trick up my sleeve that can help you navigate this crazy ride. It’s all about changing how you see yourself in your role and making those small tweaks that have a huge impact. And guess what? I’ve got the perfect book recommendation to help you on this journey: “Atomic Habits” by James Clear.

Trust me, this book is a goldmine of tools and strategies for making those tiny changes that can completely transform your identity. And let me tell you, it’s not just applicable to salespeople and CSMs – it’s a universal truth!

Picture this: you’re a salesperson working for a company with a struggling pipeline. Or maybe you’re a CSM with lofty upsell and cross-sell targets, but customer meetings are few and far between. Sound familiar? I bet it’s frustrating as heck. But here’s the exciting part – you have the power to turn things around.

I know it might sound like one of those cheesy motivational quotes, but hear me out. “Atomic Habits” will teach you how to shift your mindset from feeling like a victim of circumstances to becoming an unstoppable problem-solver. You’re not just another employee in the system – you have the ability to make a genuine difference.

Remember my story earlier? It’s all about re-imagining how you see yourself in your role. Once you embrace the idea that you hold the key to transformation, everything changes. Suddenly, you become the protagonist in your own success story.

How To Implement The Change

Take a moment to ask yourself: what do you want to be known for? I’m not talking about how others perceive you, but how you perceive yourself. Do you want to be the type of person who just accepts the situation, or do you want to be the one who takes action?

If you’re leaning towards the latter, I’ve got a secret to share with you. It’s all about finding time to learn. So, if your pipeline is looking a bit unhealthy, there’s likely one core issue at play – a lack of customer meetings.

Well, guess what? That’s the thing you need to change. It’s time to find that small tweak in your weekly habits that will help you secure those extra meetings. You’ve got to rewire your approach to getting those meetings.

Start by immersing yourself in books, podcasts and training sessions that can enhance your knowledge. Trust me, you’ll pick up some valuable tips and tricks along the way. But here’s the catch – don’t just stop there. You need to actually make time to put what you’ve learned into practice.

It’s not enough to acquire knowledge; you’ve got to take action. So, set realistic goals for yourself – ones that you can achieve on a daily or weekly basis. Maybe it’s contacting a certain number of potential customers each day or fine-tuning your questioning techniques to understand the problem a customer is facing.

The key is to break it down into manageable small weekly tasks and book those tasks into your calendar.

My Timetable For Getting More Meetings

Our Social Selling Training and Coaching programme equips you with all the skills, techniques, and resources you need to get a whopping 10+ extra meetings per week. Amazing! This programme has worked wonders for other salespeople and CSMs in the education sector and beyond.

Now, here’s the best part – I’m about to give you a sneak peek into the timetable of small changes you’ll learn about. Get ready to be amazed. Just like the “Atomic Habits” book talks about, making these tiny adjustments can have a monumental impact.

This is my schedule which yields at least 10 more meetings each week, and something like this would be my advice to you:

  • Monday – Spend an hour writing a blog and take about 5 minutes to schedule your LinkedIn posts for the entire week. Make your blog the inspiration for your posts.
  • Tuesday – Dedicate 30 minutes to connecting with prospects and customers on LinkedIn. And don’t forget to spend just 5 minutes scheduling your weekly Tweets, all inspired by Monday’s blog.
  • Wednesday – Carve out 30 minutes to connect with more prospects and customers on LinkedIn. Keep building those connections!
  • Thursday – Set aside 30 minutes to send meeting requests to approximately 100 people. You have to make those connections count.
  • Friday – Spend just 10 minutes messaging people you met the previous week, asking for referrals. It’s a small action that can return big results.

And there you have it – a total of 2 hours and 50 minutes spread across the week. These small daily changes are the key. Trust me, they hold immense value and can lead to a complete transformation. I went from zero meetings per week to a whopping 10+ just by implementing these changes. But wait, there’s more!

Our programme provides you with a treasure trove of tactics and resources to help you navigate this new approach. We give tried and tested techniques that answer crucial questions like: Who should you connect with? What’s the best way to send a connection request? And who do you ask for a meeting on a Thursday, and how do you ask? These are just a taste of the valuable insights you’ll gain.

But here’s the most important part – once you have this knowledge, putting it into action and making those small changes to your daily habits will lead to a massive difference. Say goodbye to that unhealthy pipeline and hello to a flood of customer meetings. It’s time to celebrate because guess what? You’ve made the change!

You’ve embraced the power of these small adjustments and transformed your sales or CSM role. Phenomenal job!

Social Selling Training & Coaching

Do you need more meetings with prospects and customers? Are you frustrated with the lack of sales leads and customer meetings?

Learn how to get between 10+ extra meetings, per week, per person.