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A motto has caught on around our office, and we are seeing it spread to our MSP clients as well. The motto is “B.A.M.F.A.M.” which stands for “book a meeting from a meeting.”

The best salespeople we work with, internally and externally, follow this motto religiously. When we work with our own clients, we often see a rapid shift in their closing rates once they adopt it and make it a cornerstone of their sales processes.

The core idea here is that you should always ask for the next meeting before ending a meeting. If you do not ask for the next appointment until after the meeting concludes, you may lose the prospect’s interest or may fall victim to the unfortunate realities of logistics. As inconsequential as it may sound, playing email tag with a prospect to book a time to talk can drain the momentum from the sale and kill the opportunity.

Most salespeople can recall more than a few prospects who seemed enthusiastic during the one-on-one conversation, but then fell off after the meeting. B.A.M.F.A.M. makes that much less likely to happen. That idea is intuitive for most of us in sales, but from our work with salespeople, we estimate that 25 percent of salespeople do not ask for the next meeting during an active appointment. Why?

Here is what we have learned:

  1. A poor impression of a meeting can cripple confidence. When you don’t feel like the meeting went well, you might be too embarrassed to push for the next appointment. In practice, however, prospects often do not have the experience in your industry to know that a meeting could have been better, so you should ask anyway.
  2. Rejection is scary. Asking for the next meeting in person means that your prospect could say no to your face, and that might be uncomfortable. While hearing a no is never easy, you are better off getting the no early than having to chase a prospect for weeks (and perhaps never reaching a clear conclusion).
  3. You lose steam. An extended sales meeting can be mentally taxing. By the end of a long appointment, you might not have the motivation to follow your own best practices. Though it can be hard sometimes, you should adjust your process so that you can finish an appointment just as strong as you start.
  4. Over-confidence clouds your judgment. Just as a difficult sale can drain you, a good sale can make you feel as though you don’t need to ask for the next meeting. Even in these cases, pushing for B.A.M.F.A.M. is still the best way to move the sale forward.

We have found that integrating B.A.M.F.A.M. into your sales culture helps to make the practice habit. When your team members are reminding each other to B.A.M.F.A.M., your salespeople are more likely to pull the trigger during their appointments. As we have coached clients through this process, we have even had a few share with us that they write B.A.M.F.A.M. on their sales agenda as a reminder to themselves before and during the meeting.

Unless you don’t want to move forward with the prospect, you should always B.A.M.F.A.M. Get your teams B.A.M.F.A.M. rates up from 25 to 90 percent, and you will see a significant difference in your business.

by Brad Stoller