Negotiating is one of the most important skills that an event manager should possess. Negotiation is not just simply talking to another party. It’s actually a strategic move used by one party to get the other party/parties to reach an agreement or resolve an issue. Can you see now why it’s so important in event management? Events are dynamic. Planners deal with different kinds of people and not everyone may be on the same page every time. Negotiation is important to resolve issues and make your event smooth sailing. Most importantly, it’s important in dealing with your customers. You have to use your negotiation skills to turn your leads into sales. This is one of your metrics for a successful event. The reason why you hold an event is ultimately to increase your company’s sales and revenue. That’s the bottom line. So, how do you do this? We’ve got some pointers for you.
You should be clear on your goals and objectives. Study your customer’s characteristics, interests, and needs. Determine a plan on how you can translate your leads into sales. Do your research and prepare. Anticipate questions and rebuttals. How will you answer them? Expect the other party to assert demands. How will you maintain your ground? Up to which point can you compromise that’ll still make it a win-win situation?
Now that you already know what to say, engage with your client. Engagement is crucial in every phase of event management. Moreso after the event when you’ve got to convert them into sales. Personalise your approach when you reach out to them. Some customers may have questions that you need to address after the event. Some may have already asked for a meeting with you. Check your event notes regarding your guests and take it from there for a smooth follow through.
When you’re already in a conversation with your prospective customers, you should take the lead in deciding where your discussion leads to. Know the right questions to ask that’ll lead to what you want to happen: for them to buy your product. But this doesn’t mean that you’ll do all the talking. No. Give your customers the opportunity to talk and voice out their concerns. Listen to them and respond to their interests. Make your future customers feel that you genuinely value them.
It’s essential that you get your prospective customers to make a commitment to buy your product. Your conversation should end with a definite call to action and that’s to make a purchase. There should be an agreement between both of you to move forward with the sale. Summarize the important points that you’ve discussed to be clear that you’re on the same page. Confirm their commitment to buy and advise them of the next steps on how to proceed with the purchase.
Wrapping It Up
You need to negotiate effectively to translate your leads into sales. To do this, you’ve to plan for your next move, engage your prospective customer, facilitate the conversation, and get their commitment to buy. And that’s how you convert your attendees into customers!