Being interrupted by a phone call from an annoying salesperson is one of the worst feelings for a business person. You feel like your time and mental state are being wasted, but it’s not all bad news! If you’re on the other end of that call, there are some ways to make yourself seem less “pesky” to kickstart more productive conversations with prospects. All you need is a strong opening – and we are here to help you!
The opening of a sales call is the gateway to the rest of your conversation. By mastering how you open, and by making sure that it intrigues your prospect and gets them listening further, then not only will they be more likely to stay on longer but also are much more likely to buy from you.
Your opening should –
- Start warm, friendly, and professional
- Hook them with an intriguing idea or question
- Get the prospect into a receptive frame of mind
- Encourage engagement with the call (because engagement reduces the likelihood of them stopping the conversation)
- Make it easy for them to make a positive decision
Smooth talking can only get you so far. You need to use your words wisely, and in a way that will make the person on the other end of the line want to talk with you for as long as possible. Here are 10 effective openers:
You’re not the first stranger to call them. But if you greet your prospect with their name, they’ll pause long enough to know that this isn’t just noise and may even find themselves considering what else might be said. This familiarity often creates a sense of respect as well – we are hard-wired to respond when our names are called out in conversation after all! A greeting like “Hi Joe” can lead to another question or two about how he’s been doing lately before moving on from there.
The thing to remember is that some people may be taken aback by a warm greeting, so try not to waste time after the opening, to get to your point.
Inform About Your Research About Their Company
Humans are inherently social creatures, and the prospect of a phone call from an unknown caller can be enough to make them hang up. If you want your pitch for goods or services received in polite reception by listeners on the other end of your phone line, personalize it! This will show that not only have you taken time to research who they are as individuals but also demonstrates genuine interest without coming across as too pushy about trying to sell something right away.
Connect Through a Mutual Connection
If you have a mutual connection with the person, make sure to bring it up. They’ll be curious about why your contact who had spoken to them before thought they might need what you’re selling.
Provide a Company Reference
If you’re trying to get in front of a prospect, the best way is through their colleague. If they are someone who has had contact with your company before, this will show them that you know what’s going on and have been keeping up-to-date while being able to focus the discussion on something relevant for them without coming off as overbearing or too aggressive.
Use LinkedIn Profile Information
You can find valuable things to bring up from a prospect’s LinkedIn profile. Referencing their LinkedIn page and company goals proves you’re interested in discussing something of value to them rather than just pushing your products and services, but it’s important not to forget that there is always another side to the story.
Mention a Competitor
To make your introduction more engaging, you should name-drop a competitor. This will intrigue your prospects and may even get their attention if they have never heard of either company before. You must pose the question in an engaging tone so as not to be seen as rude or pushy for asking about what could become one of our future partners’ rivals!
Bring Up Pain Points
The prospect is likely aware of their opponents’ struggles, but they’re curious about what those problems are. Your company could be the first to teach them how it feels not just to have these issues solved for themselves – which would make your product a no-brainer purchase!
Do Engage In Small Talks
Small talk is a great way to get people used to talking with you and build rapport. The best thing about small talk, though, is that it’s always absolutely 100% authentic – after all, how can anyone fake knowing what someone else likes? That being said: respect your prospect’s time! Too much meandering will leave them wondering the purpose of the call.
Bring Up Topics From Their Marketing Materials
You can create a relationship with the prospect by reading up on his company’s marketing materials. This will show that you are invested in them and your recommendations for the client will be more pertinent, and helpful. Being interested in what they post on social media or read online, opens up new opportunities to discuss results achieved from products used before as well as discussing current pain points of theirs currently under consideration.
Lose The Tactics Completely
Sometimes the best way to snag a prospect is by abandoning your playbook and catching them off guard. Catch their attention with something unexpected like announcing this as a sales call, which will make you stick out from other typical tactics they’re used to hearing. The rapport-building that follows will earn you some time for what’s important: making an offer on whatever service or product it is that we have here today!
Change Your Script
Many sales scripts position the rep as a helper. Drop it! Instead, ask whether they can help you! This appeals to their ego and/or sense of altruism, increasing the likelihood that they will respond positively. These openings highlight their business before mentioning what product or service you represent. Simply calling up and listing your company’s wares is a sure-fire way to get them slamming down the phone on you in rage.
The purpose of a connect call should always be to convince the prospect that you are professional, credible, and knowledgeable. When you do this best practice during your conversation with them they will give at least some consideration to talking further about their needs before ending the phone call – which is the surest way for its ends in success.
To have a better understanding of how to make a successful sales call, get in touch with our team of experts today!