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In-Person Meeting?

Discussion in 'General Business' started by alinasandor, Sep 14, 2014.

  1. #1
    I usually do all of my meetings through Skype, email or IM. I have a client that is insisting on an in-person meeting. I am located outside of Dallas and to commute into the city, have a meeting and travel back home would take several hours. As we know, time is money and I don't have near enough time. Would charging a fee for an in-person meeting be out of the question? I'd like to avoid a fee, but I am just so busy and being out of the office would cost me a lot of money. Thoughts?
    SEMrush
     
    alinasandor, Sep 14, 2014 IP
    SEMrush
  2. O-D-T

    O-D-T Member

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    #2
    Is it a common client that you have no problem to replace with many others that are waiting in a queue? If so, charge a fee or even refuse.
    Is it a client that you wanted to get for many months, a potential golden client for long-term relationship that you simply can not afford to lose, even if the deal is hardly done yet? If so, you'd better take the risk and visit the client.
     
    O-D-T, Sep 15, 2014 IP
    sarahk and alinasandor like this.
  3. BeachMaster

    BeachMaster Member

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    #3
    So true O-D-T. Who is this Client? Do you know the Customer Lifetime Value of this client? What's this client worth. If it's Tom Hanks looking into doing business wtih you than that trip may not be a huge cost. JK, but If it's the average joe that will likely not contribute to make your business better off than I would stick to your boundaries and remind him that your incharge. Especially if your going to be a happier person for not taking that long trip. If the client doesn't like that than perhaps they wouldn't be worth doing business with anyway.

    Also what I've learned from clients. The more you ask from them the more they appreciate you and the more you will be able to rely on them. I would consider asking that client to make the trip to you, not you to them. Be da boss. Unless of coarse your meeting with some super important dude, like Tom Hanks...
     
    BeachMaster, Sep 15, 2014 IP
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  4. alinasandor

    alinasandor Well-Known Member

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    #4
    Great advice, guys!
     
    alinasandor, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  5. jrbiz

    jrbiz Acclaimed Member

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    #5
    There is another option that I have my salespeople consider when they are asked for a physical meeting that is questionable in value.

    You can tell the prospect that both you and he are very busy people and you rarely attend physical meetings because of the time requirements for travel. However, if the prospect is very serious about a project and is leaning towards selecting you, you will make the time and effort to meet with him/her. The issue is that the request by the prospect warrants this follow up qualification; s/he is asking for more commitment and should not be upset by being asked for the same in response.

    Such an approach establishes a friendly and reasonable precedent for business to be done between the two of you.
     
    jrbiz, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  6. alinasandor

    alinasandor Well-Known Member

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    #6
    I think at this point I will agree to meet him if he is ready to go ahead with the project and the meeting is to determine exactly what kind of content he wants on his site. I won't go to interview for the chance to work with him.
     
    alinasandor, Sep 15, 2014 IP
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  7. web3k

    web3k Member

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    #7
    Can you meet half-way? If you explain to the customer that it is quite a distance to travel, perhaps they'll be reasonable enough to meet you in the middle.

    We wouldn't charge for a face-to-face meeting, unless it was on a consulting basis, but it sounds like this is more of a sales / meet and greet orientated meeting.

    Of course, this also depends on what you think the business is worth that you could potentially win from this meeting - are you confident of converting the opportunity? Does it more than cover your costs?
     
    web3k, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  8. Chaseh2

    Chaseh2 Greenhorn

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    #8
    Hi Alina,

    I've been in this situation a few times before. I don't charge fee's for meeting in person, and am annoyed whenever someone tries to charge me a fee for nothing other then a meeting. I assume that you will have the chance to sell this person your services, correct? From that perspective, it's not fair to charge someone for a sales pitch. However if your giving advice or strategy it's different.

    Try explaining (nicely) that you will be going out of your way to meet him, and that you would like his firm commitment that he is serious, or will do business with you provided you can meet his requirements. If they agree to this, you've pretty much closed them already so the chances of the trip paying off are high.
     
    Chaseh2, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  9. alinasandor

    alinasandor Well-Known Member

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    #9
    Like I said before in my update, I'm not going to charge him, but I would like him to be sure he is committed to the project. At this point he isn't and changed his budget from $3,000 to $400.
     
    alinasandor, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  10. Chaseh2

    Chaseh2 Greenhorn

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    #10
    Don't meet him then Alina. He's obviously a time-waster.
     
    Chaseh2, Sep 15, 2014 IP
  11. seoxpertz

    seoxpertz Greenhorn

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    #11
    Don't meet him, utilize your time somewhere else.
     
    seoxpertz, Sep 15, 2014 IP