Google your prospect before your first call and win more deals!

Admit it. You Google your friends, your dates, even that annoying guy who wouldn’t leave you alone at the last association meeting. But what about your prospects?

If you’re not taking 5-10 minutes to run a quick online search before every meeting, you need to start doing so pronto!

It’s the single best way to quickly gather the kind of information you need to approach the sale with confidence. Googling will give you more information about a company than even their website. It clues you in on what’s being said by and about them, specific areas of interest and even hot button issues to avoid at all costs.

Think about it. If you didn’t know that BusinessWeek recently ran a scathing article about mismanagement that led to the closure of 10 national offices and the loss of hundreds of jobs, you could quite easily blow the deal by praising their rapid growth and global impact.

But don’t stop at the company. Google the person you’ll be meeting with, too.  You can find a ton of information that will help you establish rapport and refine your pitch. Perhaps you belong to the same organization, or you discover that he’s an avid fisherman who has won several tournaments. Or maybe she shares her work philosophies in a profile published in last month’s trade magazine.  Just think about what you can do with that knowledge!

It’s also a good idea to idea to Google yourself and your company on occasion to see what’s being said.  If your prospect is doing business in this century, the chances are pretty high that they’ve Googled you!