How I use Calendly to easily organize sales trips

The least desireable part of business travel is the logistics of setting up appointments with clients when I’m in their town. I hate the various back-and-forth emails just to set up a simple one-hour meeting. And I don’t have the luxury of an assistant who can do these things for me.

Enter Calendly…

I’ve been using Calendly, an awesome app that let’s others set up appointments with you, for a few months, but I’ve never used it to arrange in-person meetings on sales trips. Until now.

Next month, I’m traveling to New York to meet with existing and potential clients. Here’s how I used Calendly to efficiently set up appointments with people:

1. Create a new event with all the basics.

Set an event name, duration you’d like to meet your clients, instructions, and add an event link that’s easy to send via email.

2. Set “all times are in”

This is a small little setting that’s easy to miss. Since I’m heading to New York, I set this event type to Eastern Time.

3. Set the From — To

For each week day you’ll be there, I set the start and end time rather wide open. If a client wants to grab happy hour instead of lunch or coffee, I’m open!

4. Set the date constraints of your trip

I’ll be in New York March 7 and 8, so I limit this event type to those dates.

5. Add Questions

While I’m running around NYC, I want the person’s address so I know where to meet them, and their phone number in case something happens and I need to reschedule.

6. Set “More Availability Options”

Turn on “Secret” so this event type doesn’t show up on your profile page. Also, set a buffer before AND after so you’ll have enough time to travel from place to place.

7. Save the event

You’ll all finished configuring Calendly. Now, head to your calendar.

8. Make sure your calendar is up-to-date

Is your flight and other obligations already on your calendar. Make sure you block time before your flight to get to the airport.

9. Preview the days in Calendly

Open the event link and compare it to your schedule. Make sure your availability shows up correctly.

10. Email those people you want to schedule time with

I used something like this:

Subject: Aaron in NYC March 7–8
Hi Mary,
I’ll be in New York March 7–8. I’d love to come by your office or buy you coffee to say hi, get some feedback and see if there’s anything we can do for you in the future.
Are you available? You can schedule time with me here: https://calendly.com/aaronbailey/aaron-in-new-york/03-07-2016
If a phone call works better for you, feel free to schedule one here: https://calendly.com/aaronbailey/30min/
I look forward to connecting,
Aaron

You’ll notice that I prepend the date of my visit to the custom link, so the recipient is taken directly to those dates I’m in town. Recipients can either schedule an in-person meeting with me while I’m in town, or if they’re unavailable, I’ve given them the option of scheduling a phone call any time with me. It’s always good to connect!

Here’s what it looks like on the recipients side:

11. Sit back and let Calendly do all the work for you

The above takes about 15–30 minutes, depending on how many emails you send out. But once it’s set up, everyone can schedule time with you without your involvement and the appointments go right on your calendar, freeing you to focus on things that actually matter.


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