Last week, I had the pleasure to conduct a sales training with 14 very talented event sales managers in Singapore. The workshop was part of the Masterclass Series that Lighthouse Independent Media stages.
Events, trade shows and conferences are different animals to sell. With a wide range of stakeholders (visitors, exhibitors, the organizers, their shareholders, press, bloggers, sponsors, online- vs. offline audiences etc.) and their varying motives, standard sales trainings often fail to meet the requirements of sales staff for events.
Subsequently, the learning objectives of the workshops in Singapore were
- Understand the customer journey for expo and sponsoring sales and how to generate and nurture leads along the way
- Learn how to use content marketing and the buyer persona concept to boost sales
- Train how to argue benefits rather than features
- Draw inspiration from leading events and find creative approaches to sponsorship and advertising offers
- Learn and apply the most important questioning techniques, how to handle objections and how to close a deal
The participants worked on five different fictitious event scenarios, ranging from a Rock-Pop-festival, a content marketing conference, trade shows all the way to a sports event.
It was fun to work together on the scenarios, and fascinating as well because the crowd consisted of pretty diverse characters with various backgrounds and experiences. It was exciting to see that the two ladies that claimed to be non-sports-people, did a fantastic job at devising a sales campaign, clear value proposition and attractive sponsorshop packages for their event! And they turned out to be great sales people, too!
By means of role plays, the participants trained
- how to lead a successful sales conversation
- how to find out about the needs of your potential customers
- how to argue benefits rather than features of their events
- how to handle the most common objections and
- how to close the deal.
After the training, the participants stated that particularly the Buyer Persona approach (characterizing the typical potential customer in detail) helped them to put themselves in the shoes of their target customers. They also appreciated the insight into the different types of customer benefits (functional, commercial and emotional) and which ones to use in different sales situations.
Lighthouse Media’s Senior Event Producer, Hairol Salim, made me very proud by summing up his feedback on the workshop:
“Michael was in Singapore recently to conduct the Sales Power for your Trade Shows/ Exhibitions MasterClass Series workshop. While I was initially uncertain about his coaching style, I was pleasantly delighted when I managed to experience firsthand what a professional and great trainer he is!
His use of interesting examples and exciting breakout sessions turned around what could have been another ordinary class into a lively, immersive experience for the trainees. I witnessed how happy the attendees were throughout his workshop! This does not discount the fact that he carries with him a wealth of knowledge and experience that the attendees found very relevant and useful.
His calm and composed manner also put both organizers and attendees at ease, making him a great person to work with. I highly recommend Michael for any of your future collaborations.”