I met with the director of marketing late November last year who was a referral of someone that I know. The individual was very interested and pleased with what I had to offer to him, and said that he was going to bring it to the board for approval. Since then, I have followed up with him a couple times (one time he reached out to me first), but he keeps saying that the executives are in the middle of approving the project and its funding (they are a $100 million dollar company). The last time I spoke with him was 2 months ago, which is when he told me that. Should I follow up with him again since it has been 2 months since we last spoke? I don't want to be a nag, but would like to close the deal, as it is quite large, but don't know quite what to do in this situation. Is there anything I could do to speed up the closing process?
I have been in this very situation a lot of times. You may need to move on. When selling you need to verify the person has budget when they are a prospect, early in the process. Your well beyond that point. If they don't have budget, you need to move up to the guy who does, altering the value proposition to get them moving. Alternately, you need to downscale your offering so this one guy can approve it and you can get to work. 99% chance he is really blowing you off. Go for the throat and ask him "what needs to be true" to get going now, as in what can be modified in the offering. Get him to say "go to hell" or "I need to push this harder". In my worst (turned in to best) experience, the guy we were selling to had budget for $30k - dragged us out forever, we pushed up to his boss and closed a deal at $2m (paid up front). Give me a call, I can probably answer this better in a 15-20 min call.
Copy this email I use it a lot when chasing up leads which have gone cold.
Apart from that, I would say that you clearly don't have a strong enough sales prospecting process. A good salesman will never, never let a discussion like this become 2 months old before chasing up.
Get in touch if you'd like help to set up the key sales process activities to help you with managing your funnel. I'd estimate a 30-45 minute call.
PS here's another email which I used after the Christmas holidays to chase up stalled prospects http://creativeagencysecrets.com/re-starting-sales-conversations-after-the-holidays/
I have experience in landing big clients over a long period of time in two of my businesses and I have recently written a few blog posts on the subject. The answer is two fold - sales are dead, build a value-added relationship with the person. Secondly, "what you appreciate, appreciates."
Once you've built a better relationship with them you can also find out all the decisions that need to be made by others to approve the offer. This exercise is called "Account Mapping" and involves detailing the entire process for completing the sale and then establishing them as a happy customer.
Here are the two blog posts I was talking about:
Make it a great day!
My initial thought is you need to get some social time with him. If he already knows and likes and trusts your expertise then you need to have that relationship with him on a personal level. Does he golf? do you golf? Does he do charity work somewhere, go volunteer there. People again buy from people they know and trust. I will often go out with business people and not mention one word about business they know what's going on, you just have to build a personal relationship, we always help our friends.