BEP 206 – Trade Show English 3: Meeting with a Prospect

This is the third lesson in our Business English Pod series on doing business at a trade show.

Trade shows are great opportunities for finding potential customers. And if you’ve got the right attitude and communication skills, you should be able to make some sales.

Now, if you’ve managed to make a connection with a strong lead and the person comes back for a second appointment, what do you do next? How do you know you’ve got a real buyer in front of you and not just someone fishing around for information? You can’t just let a prospect browse your catalog and ask you questions. You need to take charge and find out exactly what and who you’re dealing with.

Questioning skills are key. And this is what we’ll focus on today. We’ll start by looking at how to ask open-ended questions. Then we’ll get into asking about needs, buying authority, budgets, and timelines. If you can do this right, you’ll be in a great position to actually make a sale.

We’ll join Jenny, who works for a packaging company called D-Pack. She’s sitting down with a potential customer named Andrew who has returned for a chat about D-Pack’s products. Jenny is going to ask a lot of questions to assess what Andrew needs and how D-Pack can help.

Listening Questions

1. What does Andrew say his company’s needs?
2. Why does Jenny ask Andrew if he’s a purchasing manager?
3. When does Andrew’s company need the work done?

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