Even the most experienced salespeople may have trouble generating new leads. Sales calls, especially cold calling, might be difficult for anyone in the industry, even those who’ve been doing it for years. Making successful calls that attract new customers and persuade old ones to come back is a talent that must be honed through planning, perseverance, and, most importantly, the ability to learn from mistakes.
Here are 15 tips to help you make better sales calls:
1. Do your research
Before making a sales call, it is essential to do your research and understand the needs of your potential customers. This means researching the products or services you are selling and those of your competitors to tailor better your pitch to meet the specific needs of your target audience.
Here’s how to conduct proper research.
- Look for industry publications, trade magazines, or online forums where your potential customers may be discussing their needs.
- Reach out to existing clients and ask them what they like and don’t enjoy about their current suppliers.
- Check social media sites like Twitter and Facebook to learn more about the people you call.
- Talk to your sales team or colleagues who have experience selling to the same clients, and ask them for any insights they may have.
2. Be prepared
To make successful sales calls, you must be well-prepared ahead of time. This implies establishing a script or list of talking points during the call to ensure that you cover all of your vital energies and don’t get sidetracked.
Here are a few tips for being prepared:
- Write down the key points you want to cover on a piece of paper or in a digital document.
- Practice your pitch with a colleague or friend beforehand.
- Make sure you have all of the necessary information about your products or services to answer any questions that come up.
- Have a list of potential objections ready, and think about how you will respond to them.
3. Make sure you have the right mindset
It is also essential to have the right mindset going into a sales call. This means being confident in yourself and your ability to sell, and the quality of your products or services.
Some tips for building the right mindset include:
- Visualise success before the call, and imagine yourself making a good impression on potential customers.
- Positive affirmations like “I can do this” or “I am prepared and ready to sell.”
- Practice breathing exercises or meditation to calm your nerves.
- Take a few moments to relax and clear your mind before making the call.
4. Start with a friendly introduction
Starting with a friendly and professional introduction is crucial when you contact a potential customer. This sets the tone for the rest of the conversation and can help put the customer at ease.
Here are a few tips for making a successful introduction:
- Be polite and friendly, but also confident and professional.
- Avoid phrases like “Hi there” or “How’s it going?” that can make you sound unprofessional or insincere.
- Instead, use “Good morning” or “I hope this is a good time to talk.”
- Get straight to the point, and let the customer know who you are and why you are calling.
5. Build rapport
After you have made your introduction, it is essential to try and build rapport with the potential customer. This might be accomplished by finding areas of agreement, such as similar interests or a similar history.
Here are some pointers for establishing rapport:
- Ask questions about the customer’s work or personal life, and find common ground where possible.
- Try to be friendly and put the customer at ease without seeming too familiar or pushy.
- Use small talk and humour to help relax the customer and break the ice.
- Be genuine and sincere, and try to see things from the customer’s perspective.
6. Tailor your pitch to the customer
Once you have built a good rapport with your potential customer, it is time to start making your pitch. This means highlighting the benefits of your products or services to resonate with the customer and address their specific needs and concerns.
- Pay close attention to what the customer is saying, and try to pick up on any pain points or problems they may face.
- Use this information to tailor your pitch and show how your products or services can help solve their issues.
- Be concise and to the point, engage with the customer, and take their feedback into account.
- Remember that not all customers are the same, so it may be necessary to adjust or try a different approach depending on who you speak with.
7. Have a clear goal in mind
Before you make a sales call, it’s critical to have a specific aim. Do you want to create a new sale? Get feedback from your consumers? Make a follow-up appointment? Whatever your goal is, having it clearly defined will assist you in staying focused while on the phone and increasing your chances of success.
Here are some pointers for making a crystal clear objective before heading out on a sales call:
- Defining what you hope to achieve from the ring and breaking this down into specific steps or milestones.
- Do your research in advance to know who you will be speaking with and have an idea of their needs and concerns.
- Preparing a list of talking points or key messages that you can use to highlight the benefits of your products or services.
- Anticipating any questions or objections the customer might have and coming up with responses or solutions in advance.
- Be prepared to make adjustments or try a different approach if things don’t go according to plan.
8. Know your product
The best salespeople are experts in their products, so make sure you have a great understanding of yours before making a call. Familiarise yourself with your product’s technical specifications and benefits and its target market. This will help you communicate what makes your offering unique and why customers should buy it more effectively.
Here are some helpful hints for understanding your product inside and out:
- Read through the product documentation and any available marketing materials.
- Attend training sessions or webinars, and ask questions if there is anything you don’t understand.
- Carry out your research, and speak to other people who use the product to get their feedback.
9. Be prepared for objections
Customers will often raise objections during a sales call, so it is crucial to be prepared for this in advance. Objections can be anything from concerns about price or quality to doubt about the need for the product in the first place.
Here are some pointers on how to handle consumer complaints:
- Acknowledging the complaint and trying to empathise with the customer’s concerns.
- Addressing the objection directly and providing a response or solution relevant to the customer’s needs.
- Using positive language and reframing the objection as an opportunity rather than a problem.
- Asking questions to understand the objection better and using this information to tailor your pitch.
10. Take control of the call
It’s critical to take control of the sales call and direct it in the direction you want it to succeed. This implies being aggressive and leading the discussion rather than allowing the client to do so. Of course, it is also crucial to be adaptable and flexible and consider the consumer’s demands.
Here are some helpful suggestions for maintaining control of the sales conversation:
- Use open-ended questions to get the customer talking and then use active listening skills to pay attention to their responses.
- Make sure you understand the customer’s needs and concerns and respond accordingly.
- Displaying confidence in your product or service and explaining why it is a good fit for the customer.
- Positive body language, such as posture and eye contact, conveys authority and builds trust.
- Being prepared to negotiate if necessary and remaining professional at all times.
11. Keep it brief
One of the most important things to remember when making a sales call is to keep it brief. No one wants to listen to a long, drawn-out pitch, so get to the point and make your case quickly and efficiently. If you can interest the customer in what you’re selling in the first few minutes, you’re more likely to make a sale.
Keep your sales calls short and to the point with these pointers:
- Opening with a summary of what you’re going to discuss so that the customer knows what to expect.
- Getting straight to the point and not wasting time on small talk or irrelevant information.
- Use visual aids such as graphs, charts, or PowerPoint slides to support your pitch.
- Concluding with a clear call to action and ensuring that the customer understands what you want them to do.
12. Take notes
Making a sales call can be a nerve-wracking experience, so it is vital to be prepared. One way to do this is to take notes during the call so that you can refer back to them later. This will help you remember what was said and follow up on any critical points.
Here are some ideas for taking notes during a sales call:
- Jot down key points as the customer speaks so you don’t forget anything.
- Keep your notes brief, but have enough information to jog your memory later.
- Use a shorthand or code system to write down important details quickly and efficiently.
- Review your notes after the call, and make any necessary changes or additions before moving on to the next step.
13. Follow up after the call
Following up with the client after a sales call is one of the most important activities you can perform. This might include sending additional information, suggesting a next step in the process, or addressing any concerns during the conversation.
After a sales call, there are a few things you can do to ensure that your business thrives:
- Sending a thank-you note or email to the customer and cc’ing your manager.
- Asking for feedback on the call and what could be improved next time.
- Ensure that you have all the necessary information from the customer before moving forward.
- Proposing a next step in the process, such as taking the sale to the next level or scheduling another call.
- Seeking advice from other sales reps who have more experience.
14. Use technology to your advantage
To be successful, you must remain up to speed on the most recent sales tools and technologies. This helps you be more efficient while also allowing you to serve a larger audience.
Here are a few suggestions for utilising technology to your advantage during calls:
- Use online resources such as customer relationship management (CRM) or social media platforms to keep track of leads and organise your contacts.
- Utilising call-scheduling software or other tools allows you to reach more customers and increase sales.
- Use a headset or other communication device to help you sound more professional and avoid distractions during the call.
- Research new technologies that might help you improve your process or increase your results.
15. Stay positive and persistent
To succeed in sales, it is crucial to stay positive and persistent. It is important not to get discouraged or give up no matter what happens during a call. If the customer is not immediately interested in your product or service, continue to follow up and try again later.
Here are some ideas for remaining upbeat and persistent during sales conversations:
- Remind yourself that rejection is a part of the process and that every “no” gets you closer to a “yes.”
- Keeping a positive attitude, even when the call is not going as planned.
- Focusing on your goals and what you want to achieve by making this sale.
- Staying motivated by setting small goals and celebrating each victory along the way.
- Continuing to follow up with customers, even if they are not interested.
These are just a few tips that can help you make better sales calls. By following these tips, you will be able to improve your results and close more deals. Remember, the key is to be prepared, stay positive, and never give up.