So you’ve hopped aboard the rapidly proceeding MicroMarket train? More and more people are switching over to this self-service, 24-hour style of fresh food program that is threatening to make traditional vending machines in certain locations a thing of the past. Most OCS & Vending Operators understand the benefits and how it can be an asset to their bottom line, but the concept is fairly new and operators are faced with the challenge of getting in touch with an appropriate prospect base in order for the service to flourish. Just like any potentially lucrative business endeavor, you run the risk of epic failure if you drop the ball on marketing for your target market.
As a MicroMarket operator, there will be some requirements for the types of companies you will work with (as with any service). After all, you’re investing in licenses and installation, so you need to make sure you’re finding qualified businesses that are going to make the service profitable. You’ll require a certain staff size to assure that the market will be getting high traffic, and additionally a private employee-only break room for the equipment to be set up in. Within the initial introductory phone call, a lead generator can establish the company’s staff size and current vending situation along with other requirements, therefore eliminating those that do not qualify and zeroing in on the target group. This can often be accomplished through probing questions of the screener (receptionist). Deciding on who you want to work with is only half the battle, though. Once you’ve done so, an effective method of contacting them and pitching the product must be established.
In this day and age, interpersonal contact is becoming more and more convoluted by the wall of technology (or is it?) By making that contact and establishing a personal relationship with an in-person meeting, and in building rapport and trust, your prospective clients are likely to buy since this new endeavor will likely put you ‘first in’ for the time being! MicroMarkets are still in infancy stage, so if you can get in the door, you’ll have a solid opportunity to knock the prospect’s socks off. The ultimate objective of an introductory calling campaign is to set operators up for scheduled appointments with interested potential clients that have been pre-qualified as promising targets. Do not sell the service over the phone- seek to only get an appointment!
In order to land the appointment, some engaging questions must be asked. This will help get an idea of where your prospect stands currently so the message can be tailored for a successful outcome. A phone lead generation campaign utilizes some special scripting techniques during the introductory phone call to do just that. “What is your current vending situation?” is a great way to get started. Prompt the prospect to talk about how many machines they have and what’s in those machines. Utilizing open-ended questions allows a lead generator to attain the information they need, show they care about understanding the needs vs. just selling what’s on their agenda, and propel the conversation toward a favorable end. By giving prospects a chance to speak first, it not only avoids the dreaded scenario of bombarding them with information, but also opens up the conversation to address their specific needs and concerns. “Tell me about the kinds of items you have in your vending machine now.” If they reveal that traditional snacks and soda vending machines are their only source of food, chances are they wouldn’t mind having a wider variety and now you’ve got a golden pathway that will often lead to a crucial benefit statement of the MicroMarket; fresh food at no cost to the company. We all know that in this health-crazed society, everyone and their mother is on some sort of diet or health plan; While ‘healthy food’ in vending is often requested but not sold, MicroMarkets provide that higher level of quality that clients will desire. Comparing the food choices of MicroMarkets to those offered in vending machines will often appeal to the health-nut in your prospects, leading them to the notion that having fresh food available will make it that much easier to make guilt-free choices.
In addition to offering a fresh, wide variety of food, a leading benefit of the MicroMarket setup is its 24/7 accessibility. By inquiring “Do you have employees that work late or overnight shifts?” a lead generator can gently guide them toward a statement that is pretty difficult to argue with. Any business that has employees working off-hour shifts would likely admit that the food options are limited to snacks offered in a vending machine. While some do have sandwich or meal vending machines, products can’t be picked up and viewed, and the quality is often not good enough to compete with that of the MicroMarket selection. Understanding your prospects current circumstance by asking the right questions, first by phone, is the fastest and ideal method of gaining that coveted in-person appointment.
Once you have asked some good probing questions and presented benefit statements, now it’s time to close for the in-person appointment! “Do you have a calendar in front of you?” is a great leading question to nail the appointment. Of course, you can use the tried and true alternative choice close… “Which day is better for you next week, Tuesday or Thursday?” Or, fit the appointment around your availability, because after all, if you’re able to sell a Market right now as you read this issue, then you’ve got the goods!
The benefit of investing in a Micro-Market is not some guarded industry secret kept under lock and key; it’s becoming common knowledge to anyone paying attention in the OCS and vending world. The competition is becoming fierce as a result of more operators realizing just how successful it can be. Many vending companies are switching over or adding MicroMarkets to their repertoire of services, so acting sooner than later will give your business the competitive advantage. Being the first one in the door imprints your brand on clients’ minds and significantly increases the chances that they will choose your services over your competitors’. So you should honestly ask yourself, what are you waiting for? While you just did that, another operator was walking out the door of a successful sales appointment orchestrated by their tactful investment in a MicroMarket lead generation campaign. Go get ‘em!
For more information on how MarketReach can help you through your Micromarket lead generation efforts, call us today at 609-448-6364!