This morning I ran a FREE Sales Training Workshop focussed on helping people get more sales appointments. These were the ten action points discussed, though of course we went into them in far more detail than below of course. I'll be running this workshop again, likely in 2017 but feel free to contact us if you want any clarity on the content below. We like talking about sales......
Remember also that all ten points are redundant if you do not make TIME to do the calling. Top 20% performers have allocated time to generate their next and future customers. The other 80% are ‘gunnas’ and ‘I’ll get round to it’, ‘I’m too busy right now’ type folk…. Ask yourself which category you want to be in.
Sexy data – keep your data TIDY as well as up to date. Every contact in your database should have a NEXT ACTION allocated to it. If they don’t, you don’t have a database, just a list…
Sales Message – your sales message should be true to your company, your core values and focussed around what builds relationships. Not QUICK WINS.
Introduction – use your surname and clearly state it and the company name. Address the relevance of your call to that particular company (location, sector, need etc) this is what separates a business call from a speculative telesales call. State that you are looking to send further information at this stage and ask ‘WHO would be the BEST PERSON to send it to?’ the capitals are for emphasis of the importance of those words… Not meant for you to shout at the person on the other end of the phone.
Introductory Information – this should be brief. Rather than inundating the receiver with information thank them for their time or identify the colleague who asked you to send this information to them, identify the relevance as you did on the introduction and identify that you are going to call them to learn more about their business. You can include a weblink and/or PDF so that they are able to easily find more information should they wish but keep the body of the email to a minimum.
The Bridge – This is the most difficult part of any telesales call. Generating a conversation when you have zero rapport. When you perform your follow up call, reference the email sent but do not ask if they have seen it/had time to read it. This will almost certainly kill the call. Instead tell them you’re looking to learn more about them or their business and ask them an open and relevant question to get them talking.
Questions – have a list of relevant open & fact finding questions as part of your script. This will increase the amount the customer talks and increase your chance of getting an appointment. You can also ask another question to prevent any lulls in conversation.
Benefits (not features!) – introduce your company’s USPs as relevant to your customer – i.e. tell them things about you based on what they told you about them. I usually term this making 100 different pitches versus making the same pitch 100 times. (I’m also off to come up with an example that doesn’t reference a CD player. Realised how dated that sounded for the first time this morning…. I’m getting old…)
Asking for the appointment – make sure you ASK for an appointment directly off the back of introducing a relevant benefit to the client. It is at that point that a further conversation is the logical next step. Remember to ask WHEN is a good time for an appointment. If they don’t go for an appointment then WHEN is a good time for you to next contact them.
Confirming the appointment – a clear email to confirm the date, time and location of the meeting can be sent directly after the conversation and let them know they can contact you if they need to CHANGE the time etc. Try to avoid calling the day before as this often ends up in last minute cancellations. If the customer has asked you to do that then of course do but as process, avoid.
Presumptive closing – things won’t move forward unless you are confident and expecting them to do so. The customer can say no at any time, it’s not our job to encourage that with uncertainty. You get what you focus on so if you call expecting and fearing rejection, guess what’s coming your way. If I told you that you had to call 100 people to find 1 who would give you £1m, you wouldn’t give a flying monkeys how much the other 99 insulted you so why is it any different when trying to build your business??