Why it’s better to have a face-to-face business meeting

Obviously, there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to the best method of liaising with prospective business clients, as it can vary depending on factors such as the industry, product or service being offered, and the individual preferences of the client. However, common effective methods include:

  • Face-to-face meetings: Meeting in person can help establish a personal and authentic connection, build trust, and provide an opportunity to showcase your product or service in more detail.
  • Phone calls: Phone calls can be an effective way to establish a personal connection and address any questions or concerns that the client may have.
  • Email: Email can be a convenient and efficient way to communicate with clients, but it can be less personal than other methods and may not provide the same level of engagement.
  • Social media: social media can be an effective way to connect with clients, particularly if you are targeting a younger demographic or if you are using social media for branding and building awareness.
  • Video calls: Video calls became very popular during the Covid pandemic and can be a good way to establish a personal connection, to exchange nonverbal cues and to show your product or service.

Ultimately, the best method will depend on the individual client’s preferences, their industry, and the stage of the sales process. It’s important to be responsive and flexible to their needs and to use the method that works best for them.

You will most likely rely on a range of the above methods to get to your goal.

Let’s look at face-to-face meetings more closely…

At Platform Events, our primary focus is putting Suppliers in front of Buyers that are working on active projects/supply chain and might be interested in their product or service. But what are the benefits of taking the time to meet prospects face to face?

Meeting a business prospect in person can have several benefits, including:

Building personal relationships: Meeting in person allows for a more personal and authentic connection to be made, which can help to build trust and establish a deeper level of understanding between the two parties.

  • Showcasing products or services: In-person meetings provide an opportunity to showcase and explain your product or service more effectively, and to answer any questions the prospect may have.
  • Observing nonverbal cues: Meeting in person allows for the observation of nonverbal cues such as body language and facial expressions, which can provide insight into the prospect’s level of interest or understanding of your product or service.
  • Addressing concerns or objections: In-person meetings provide an opportunity to address any concerns or objections the prospect may have, and to provide additional information or clarification.
  • Building lasting relationships: Meeting in person can help to build a more lasting relationship with the prospect, which can increase the likelihood of closing a deal and lead to future business opportunities.
  • Establishing authority and professionalism: Meeting in person can help establish you as an authority and professional in your field, which can help establish a strong reputation and build trust with potential clients.
  • Closing a deal: Meeting in person can increase the chances of closing a deal as it allows for a more personal and authentic connection, nonverbal cues can be observed, and objections or concerns can be addressed.

So how do you get the most out of your business meeting?

Having that all important face-to-face business meeting won’t win you that deal alone, there are several things you should consider before, during and after your meeting. To get the most out of your face-to-face meeting, you should consider the following:

  • Prepare: Before the meeting, research the prospect and their business to gain a better understanding of their needs and interests. Prepare a clear and concise agenda and gather any materials or information that will be needed.

    One of the great things about attending Platform Events is that you know your schedule, time frame and some information about the prospect you are meeting before you arrive.
  • Be on time: Arriving on time shows that you respect the prospect’s time and are serious about the meeting.

    When you attend a Platform Event, your schedule is provided for you, the meetings are concise so make the most of your time slot.
  • Start with a strong opening: Begin the meeting with a strong opening that captures the prospect’s attention and establishes the purpose of the meeting.

    With a busy event of 20-minute meetings, it’s important to keep your message strong, beneficial, to the point and memorable.
  • Listen actively: Listen actively to the prospect and ask open-ended questions to understand their needs and concerns.

    OK, this is sales rule 101 but keep it in mind during your face-to-face meetings however they are structured.
  • Address objections: Anticipate and address any potential objections the prospect may have.

    Don’t forget you are sitting opposite your prospect, this gives you the best opportunity to address and objections there might be and answer questions fully, it is often much easier to explain things in person than on an email or over the phone.
  • Provide solutions: Provide solutions to the prospect’s needs and explain how your product or service can help them achieve their goals.

    The buyers attend Platform Events because they are actively working on projects and looking to source new suppliers; especially those with innovative ideas, products & services.
  • Be professional and leave a good impression: Be professional throughout the meeting and leave a good impression by being well-prepared, respectful, and attentive to the prospect’s needs.

    Your scheduled meetings at Platform events are just the first step and the attending buyers will be holding meetings with many other suppliers, make sure your meeting is memorable for the right reasons.
  • Take notes: Take notes during the meeting to help you remember key points and to use for follow-up.

    Make the most of the printed directory all attendees of Platform Events receive for you notes, utilise the information that is already provided for you. Give yourself enough information to follow up on properly.
  • Follow up: After the meeting, follow up with the prospect to provide any additional information they may need and to schedule a next meeting if necessary.

    To many, this goes without saying but it is sometimes still missed by some. The face-to-face meeting was the early part of your business relationship, good and effective follow up is essential to close that deal.
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What is the best way to follow up a business meeting?

The best way to follow up after a business meeting depends on the specific circumstances of the meeting, but here are some general tips that can be helpful:

  • Send a thank you note: Send a thank you note to the prospect within 24 hours of the meeting to express your appreciation for their time and to reiterate your interest in working with them.
  • Follow up on any action items: Follow up on any action items or next steps that were agreed upon during the meeting.
  • Send additional information: Send any additional information or materials that were requested during the meeting.
  • Schedule a next meeting: If you haven’t already done so at your first meeting, schedule a next meeting if necessary, and confirm the details in writing.
  • Keep in touch: Keep in touch with the prospect on a regular basis, whether through email, phone, or another form of communication.
  • Personalise your follow up: Personalise your follow-up to the prospect and their specific needs, rather than using a generic template or message.
  • Be timely: Follow up in a timely manner, don’t wait too long to reach out after the meeting.
  • Be persistent but not pushy: Be persistent in your follow-up efforts, but also be mindful not to come across as pushy or overbearing.
  • Use the right channel: Use the right channel for follow-up, whether it’s email, phone, or another form of communication, depending on the prospect’s preference. Make sure you ask them at your face-to-face meeting about their preferred method of contact.
  • Keep track: Keep track of all the follow-up actions and communication with the prospect, it will help you to keep track of the progress and the status of the deal.

At Platform Events, we understand the importance of face-to-face meetings and the benefits to both Buyers and Suppliers in building business relationships. That’s why our events are focused solely on providing a platform for Buyers to meet relevant Suppliers.

We plan, organise and host 4 Industry specific meeting and networking Event Platforms a year where we expertly match relevant Suppliers to meet the pre-specified project and supply chain needs of active Buyers!

Find out more about our events:

Facilities Management & Estates Platform
Architecture & Design Platform
Catering Platform
Projects & Development Platform