A solid and complete visit strategy has three parts:
- Predisposition (before).
Predisposition is what you do before the visit to set the context for the visit.
- The Visit (often including the ask).
Strategy about the visit focuses on how you will navigate the flow of the conversation toward your goals.
- Follow-up (after).
Most commitments are generated through timely and persistent follow-up.
So, the context of a visit is set before you visit with the prospect using predisposition and the outcome is cemented after the visit using follow-up.
Think about how much focus and energy you devote to each part of the strategy. For most of us, it looks something like this:
Compare that to this image, which spends more total energy on the prospect strategy by putting more energy into predisposition and follow-up:
It’s natural to focus our attention on the visit, since it’s where the emotional connection happens – we gear up for that and then exhale after the visit. The visual above helps us to be deliberate in our focus. Most of us need to be investing a lot more energy into predisposition and follow-up.
For each top-prospect-strategy ask yourself, “What else can we be doing in predisposition and follow-up?”
- How can we use our champions (more) before or after the visit to create excitement? Or to validate our project? Perhaps it’s a simple phone call placed as part of the follow-up strategy: “Thank you for taking time to meet with Nick. I’m invested in this project and just wanted to share how important it is to me and offer to answer any questions you might have. Thanks for your consideration!”
- Can we send something else, before or after the visit? Perhaps we make a care package containing copies of testimonial letters from those impacted by our work. What if we sent a package to arrive 24 hours before our visit?
- Get them to campus! This can be literal or it can be useful as a metaphor. Get them to see your impact as part of the predisposition and/or follow-up strategy!