It’s your first day on the job. Your shaky hand picks up the phone and dials the first of many phone numbers on the list. The ring! The sweat beads on your forehead! The suspense! “Hello?” 3…2…1…go! You have seconds to sell your product or service, and you need to keep the person on the other side hooked. That’s how cold calls often go. If you want to take the stress out of it for good, perhaps you need a good script that does half the job for you.
Notice how we said half? That’s an important detail to remember.
But first, let’s focus on your script and how it will help you effectively sell your product.
Do you really need one, though?
Before we continue to what you should say or not say, and how to open and close a call, we thought it would be necessary to go over if you really need to make the call using a script. What are some of the arguments? For starters, many people think that a sales script makes you sound less human and more robotic. They think it takes away the sound of your voice.
Believe it or not, using a script is not that common, but there are some benefits to using them for your sales teams.
Important Points to Include
- Your name & company
- Check if the person has time to talk to you
- Quick introductions
- The sales pitch
As already established, cold calling should sound natural. Depending on the answers and reactions you get from the other side, you will need a plan of action for a quick response. Between the different points, you can include rapport-building questions such as “How’s your day going?” or touch on the issues you are later going to resolve.
The thing with scripts is that you risk sounding like a salesperson from the get-go, and people rarely warm to that. Instead, you can write your script following Tim Ferriss’ advice and sound like someone with much more credibility. In his example, it was an engineer.
You don’t want complaints about improper customer data usage.
So, when building your script, try to think of it as calling someone you vaguely know like an acquaintance of an acquaintance. Ideally, you know your target audience pretty well, but for them, you are just a stranger, and there is no trust established. That should be your first goal. Yes, not selling the product, or closing the deal. You should focus your time on building trust.
1) Your name & company
Although you should definitely state those, it is really important that you don’t talk too much about yourself. Shift the focus onto the person on the other side.
2) Check availability
Don’t start with telling them what you are calling for straight away; include a question such as “Is it a good time to talk?” You need their full attention, and if they are busy, it’s going to be an uphill battle to keep them on the phone. Always leave them an option to reschedule the call or meeting.
3) Quick introductions
That’s going to include a bit more of what you have to sell. You should strive to sound confident at all times, but you can approach this introduction to make sure they are the type of customers who would benefit from what you are selling. “I am just making sure my product fits your needs.”
4) The sales pitch
If everything has gone well so far, and you have established trust and authenticity, it’s time to emphasize on the most important feature of your product/service and why the customer should give it a chance; this is known as the pitch. You should master this part, practice how you want to say it, and let it naturally flow, don’t say it like a robot and always look for feedback from the other side. See which points of the pitch make the biggest impression and dig into them.
Don’t be afraid to go off the rails
So far, we have covered why it’s a great idea to have a script for your sales calls and what to include in them, but you should not use the cookie-cutter approach.
For someone who has little to no experience in making sales calls and not sounding confident over the phone (as are many people are when they are first starting out), having a script is like a life jacket.
True, the script is there to help you with the psychological barriers and make you sound more confident.
That being said, you don’t have to follow your cold callingscript word for word. After all, you will need to think on your feet with each person and find the unique selling point for them during the conversation. Over time, you need to learn how to improvise in real time and recognize different communication cues and how to deal with different responses and reactions.
What not to say?
1) Don’t rush & don’t be pushy
Yes, your time is limited, but you don’t have to start cross-selling the moment you hear that your client will potentially need another one of your services. Instead, listen to what they say, and if they mention a pain point that fits another of your product lines, wait for the perfect moment to weave it naturally into the conversation.
2) Don’t trust the script to do all the work
That’s just something you need to keep in mind. Don’t rely too much on it, but customize it as much as you can. That’s actually one of the tips that legendary salespeople like Jordan Belfort (The Wolf of Wall Street, himself) will tell you. Your script should be more of a guiding tool.
3) Don’t ask too many questions that require a short answer
Now, those are good if you want some small talk or ice breakers in the beginning of the conversation, but you should really think about asking open questions that require a longer answer from the person on the other end.
We hope these tips will make your sales script work way more effectively than before. If you don’t have one, consider the possibility of making it a part of your sales team’s training and share the effect it has on your revenue! We would love to know how it’s going.
Chris Mcdonald has been the lead news writer at complete connection. His passion for helping people in all aspects of online marketing flows through in the expert industry coverage he provides. Chris is also an author of tech blog Area19delegate. He likes spending his time with family, studying martial arts and plucking fat bass guitar strings.