Phone Selling Tips
Making a Connection
These days, everyone is in a hurry and many people don’t have the time or the patience to entertain sales calls. How, then, do you connect with potential customers and transform that “potential” into a done deal? Here are a few ways to start every call strong:
● Open with a friendly comment or pleasant topic. Great weather, weekend plans, and even just a sincere inquiry about how the person’s week is going are solid contenders that get the call going in a positive direction.
● Be confident. The best salespeople are naturally confident, so this one should be a no-brainer. People respond much more readily to someone who seems to know what they’re talking about. This means that every member of a sales team should be an expert who is fully able to provide additional information when requested and answer any questions that might arise during the call.
● Be natural. Connecting with a potential customer requires that they like you. If a salesperson sounds like they’re reading straight from a script, or like they’re putting on a phony friendly front, then they’re going to miss the mark. Many successful salespeople swear by sitting up straight or even standing when they’re on calls, saying that this helps them speak more naturally and authoritatively.
● Listen to (and learn from) your calls. It can be very helpful to replay recordings of past sales calls to see what worked, what didn’t, and what can be improved upon.
Things to Avoid
Any list of do’s worth its salt is accompanied by an equally important list of don’ts. Here are a few things you should advise your sales team to avoid when they’re selling by phone:
● “Um, uh, er.” These verbal fillers lessen the impact of what you’re saying and can make you seem uncertain and timid. Work on weeding verbal tics out of your sales approach, replacing them with short pauses to collect your thoughts when you feel one coming on.
● Talking too fast. The tendency to speed up your words increases when you’re feeling nervous, so if the phone makes you start to speed-talk, make it a point to slow things down – way down. Speaking 20% slower than you ordinarily would will make your words clearer and lend confidence to your tone.
● Thinking your luck will change. A salesperson who has hit a dry spell may be tempted to think that they’re due for some success. That may not be true, however, and could lead to complacency and lack of growth. Often a series of strike-outs means it’s time to take a closer look at sales techniques and approaches and make some changes. It’s important to keep honing your skills and seeking to improve along the way.
Strengthen Your Sales Team
Keeping your team primed and ready for any type of sale – on the phone, in person, or in any other scenario – is the most effective way to optimize every encounter with a potential customer. Develop a plan for continuing sales training to ensure that every sales associate in your organization is achieving top-tier performance and measurable results!