4 Reasons Why Your Client is on the Fence and How to Convert the Sale
Alas, you have caught the eye of a planner, crafted a winning proposal, sorted through the details, but they just can’t seem to commit. Why?
At VenueBook, we’re the conduit between venue managers and planners. We consider ourselves the experts on reading the minds of planners. We also witness a lot of venue manager mistakes! Luckily, we're here to help you avoid slip-ups and convert your indecisive bookers.
1. The Client "isn't ready" or non-responsive
Create a sense of time urgency (without being pushy). Maybe the event is months away or maybe it is fast approaching. Either way, make the client aware of the demand of your spaces and ask if they are still interested. For example, explain that your late fall Thursday and Fridays are rapidly filling up with holiday party bookings and you do not want them to miss out.
2. The Client is Window-Shopping
It’s quite possible that the booker is doing their research and looking into other venues. In this case, all you can do is send a follow-up email explaining why your venue can meet their needs, be available for questions, and most importantly, answer promptly! The booker is comparing you to all of the managers he or she is in contact with - what will set you apart is fast responses; we are talking under 2 hours. They will eliminate your venue as a contender if your communications are scattered and delayed! Staying alert can pay off and earn you the booking.
3. The Client is Hesitant because the Proposal Exceeds Their Initial Budget.
Help the client understand that you get what you pay for; emphasize your attention to detail, unparalleled professionalism, and successful past events. If the client in confidence in your ability to provide a one of a kind service, not just a great space, the extra money could be justified.
Additionally, you can suggest great alternatives that cost less, but still give that exquisite experience - think reserved table in a larger space vs that private room or sliders vs lamb chops or beer/wine vs full open bar. Remember to be creative and don’t expect the client to double their budget. Most clients will only go about 20% over budget, so sending them outlandish proposals will surely sending them running in the other direction.
4. They Are Representing Someone Else
There could be a number of roadblocks when working with the representative of a company. Maybe the rep or assistant wasn’t given enough info or maybe they were sent just to gather options. Understand that the person you're in contact with might not have the decision making power. The best path forward is to ask a lot of questions so you can try to understand what this person’s boss wants and make sure to provide those answers, such as concise information around amenities with a clear total cost -- at the end of the day this the figure that their boss wants.
Waiting for others to make a decision is frustrating, but it’s the nature of this business. I’m sure you’ve found a common theme here: respond quickly, anticipate questions before they are asked, and wait! If you are tired of chasing unqualified leads, consider using our ExpressBool tool which allows planners to price out a first draft of the proposal using your own event information. This educates them and allows you to start the conversation on email 5, saving everyone a lot of time.
Topics: For Venue Managers