Published on January 31, 2014
Controlling a Sales Call 1
The ability to control a call and guide it in a positive direction is a key skill for a sales professional. Clear and effective communication is essential to ensure that opportunities are not lost. 2
Have a plan for the call. ◦ Have the right attitude. Having a positive attitude makes a difference, and your prospect can hear it. Have an introduction. ◦ Introduce yourself, the company and why you are calling. 3
Get their attention. ◦ Try to create excitement in 15 seconds or less, in one breath, without a pause. ◦ Add energy to your call by standing up and make sure you have a smile in your voice. ◦ Create a pressure-free, open atmosphere. 4
Build Rapport ◦ People are most comfortable dealing with (and buying from) other people who are like them. ◦ Be likeable and mirror the prospect. Match their volume, speed and tone of voice. Use phrases that you hear them use as well. 5
Use their name. ◦ When greeting a prospect, use their first name. ◦ Always use your full name. ◦ Use their name at least 3x during the call. Christopher 6
Make a connection. ◦ Use visually descriptive words. ◦ Create trust by discussing their issues and not yours. ◦ Speak naturally and strive to be helpful. ◦ Be patient, open minded and listen. 7
Know their needs. ◦ Know their goals and desires. Make the impact clear. ◦ Make the business case. ◦ Show the benefits and value. ◦ Use descriptive words to paint a picture. 8
Balance the conversation. ◦ Listen & Speak ◦ Ask questions Open Closed Probing ◦ Make recommendations 9
Generate short, finite answers (yes / no) Do not encourage discussion Limit what participant says Gain a final answer, conclusion or confirmation Examples: ◦ Is it X…? ◦ Have you ever…? 10
Generate descriptive answers Encourage discussion and participation Promote sharing of experiences and knowledge Examples: ◦ How can you…? ◦ What are some ways…? ◦ Why would you want to…? 11
A probing question is an open-ended follow up question intended to elicit a thoughtful answer. Allows for a deeper dive into the subject. Examples: ◦ What did you mean by xxx? ◦ Why do you think this is the case? ◦ What would have to change in order for…? 12
Wrapping up the call. ◦ Summarize what was said. ◦ Obtain a commitment. Recommend an exact date and time for a follow up either by email or by phone. Creating a deadline is a powerful tactic. Allow the prospect to have the last word. 13
Follow Up. ◦ If you set up a follow up call, send an email reminder (invite) immediately. ◦ This email should confirm the date and time of the appointment. ◦ Build a follow up opening statement. Remind the client why they agreed to the follow up call. 14
Persistent Polite Professional Not a PEST! 15
Lie, pretend or exaggerate. Knock the competition. Make a pitch to a non-decision maker. State features of the product without the benefit. End a call without asking for the sale. Talk politics, religion or tell jokes. 16
Eat, drink or chew gum while speaking on the phone. Socialize on a sales call. “Wing it” on a sales call. End a call without knowing the next step. 17
Controlling a Sales Call 19
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