What Is a Sales Meeting?
Generally, a sales meeting refers to a gathering or forum scheduled by a company's sales department. Team members may discuss sales policies and procedures, incentives, or one of the company's products or services. Sales meetings are an important part of the sales process because they're designed to assist in the development of products and services while building relationships, identifying deficiencies and needs, and outlining the product's benefits.
- A sales meeting is a gathering or forum scheduled by a company's sales department.
- Participants generally include sales managers, other company personnel, sales teams, and/or clients.
- Sales meetings are often used to motivate staff, identify challenges, give updates, and provide new and existing clients with product knowledge.
How Sales Meetings Work
A sales meeting is a gathering scheduled by the company's sales managers or other executives. Parties involved in these meetings include members of the sales department, other key company personnel, developers, and manufacturers. The meeting may also be attended by new and/or existing clients.
Sales meetings are scheduled for a variety of reasons. The purpose of a sales meeting depends on the type of company. They may be used as a way to:
- Motivate staff, recognize top performers, and set department goals
- Discuss new products and services in development, and give product updates
- Identify challenges and problems in the department
- Overcome deficiencies in sales figures
- Develop strategies and improvements for new and existing products
- Provide new and existing clients with company and product knowledge and a presentation of the benefits offered by the company
For instance, financial institutions may schedule sales meetings involving personal financial planners to discuss retirement goals, build rapport, and explain how the investment products and fund management will meet the goals of the potential client. Tech companies may schedule sales meetings with their staff in order to provide demonstrations of new products and services so they are better able to sell them to the general public.
Sales meetings, or sales conferences, aren't always structured in a formal, presentation format. They may take place in informal settings such as one-on-one conversations or even conference calls. And thanks to the internet, sales meetings can also be held online through video conferencing sites like Zoom, Skype, or Webex—as long as participants have access to a computer or other device and a reliable internet connection.
Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual meetings were on the rise. A 2019 survey by Lifesize reported that 78% of companies surveyed relied on video calls for team meetings.
Sales managers and other department heads must weigh the benefits of hosting sales meetings, however, because they can be costly. Sales conferences should be held sparingly and only when necessary. Although they may, in theory, help the department, over-scheduling these meetings can often limit productivity—especially if they're held on a regular basis. That's because the more time team members spend in meetings, the less time they have to actually be on the job.
Scheduling too many sales meetings can be costly and lead to a loss in productivity.
Meetings held internally generally don't include clients and are often led by sales managers or executives who oversee the sales division of an organization. The meeting may feature updates on campaigns to pitch products and services to customers, the introduction of new marketing efforts, and other elements that may affect the sales process. For instance, the sales team may need to be brought up to speed on how to leverage software for connecting with and encouraging sales prospects to commit to a purchase.
Personnel from other departments might be included in sales meetings to add perspective on the products being sold. Nonsales staff may also join a sales representative when pitching a product to a potential client. For example, a salesperson may bring along a technical expert to help demonstrate to the customer how a product functions.
It is not uncommon for sales meetings within companies to highlight the top performers of the sales team, presenting them as examples to their peers. Sales managers may also use the time to discuss how the sales team approaches clients and the ways they try to persuade them to purchase the service or product. There may be new guidance on the language the sales team should use when discussing a potential sale with a prospect. Instructions on how often to contact sales prospects might also be outlined.