Getting a visit is both an ATTITUDE and a SKILL. There’s a ‘SYSTEM’ to it.
Getting a visit is all about: PREDISPOSING … QUALIFIED PROSPECTS … to take your phone CALL … and ultimately VISIT with you. I’ve included action steps, strategies, and tips to help you make it happen.
We are professionals. We do not make COLD CALLS! We always PREDISPOSE the prospect/potential investor. We first predispose a potential investor to our phone call to set up the visit, and then we predispose to the visit/ presentation itself (and yes, we even predispose to the follow-up).
The word PREDISPOSE means to make someone inclined, in advance, to a specific action or attitude. You need to be literally (not figuratively) be predisposing potential investors to expect your contact and look forward to visiting with you about your amazing organization.
The goal of predisposition is simple: GET THE VISIT! It is NOT to ‘sell on the phone’!
A really strong predisposition e-mail or letter makes the follow-up phone call very assumptive/ presumptive!
“I’m following up on the note that you received from (Natural Partner) and I’d like to see if you might be available next Tuesday morning? Or would Wednesday afternoon be better?”
Consider having someone else set up the visit! I know this is somewhat sacrilegious to many people, but I’ve found it to be the single most effective way to get visits. This is especially important if you are full-time Development Officer/Major Gift Officer/Chief Development Officer with a portfolio. You should be making presentations, not setting up visits.
In the predisposition note, the sender/Natural Partner closes with these very important words: “I have asked Mary Smith from our development team to follow-up with you to set up a visit.”
A phone call from your CEO/President’s Assistant is one of the absolute best ways to get a visit.
The easiest way for the Campaign/Foundation Team of a well-respected hospital to
get a visit with their top prospects is to do a simple predisposition email from the CEO, and then ask her wickedly competent and talented assistant does a follow-up phone call to set the visit. The assistant already knows knows all of the CEO’s relationships, and has great existing interaction with both the prospects and their assistants (gatekeepers).