Whether this is your first sales call or two thousandth, there is always a sense of urgency in meeting a client where they are at when preparing for the call. Sometimes, it can cause butterflies to appear in your stomach as you prepare. “What if they ask a question that I do not know the answer to?” “What if they bring up a good point about purchasing from our competitor?” Like anything done right, preparing for sales calls takes diligence, strategy, a hard work ethic, and, the mother of them all, time.
Preparing for the Call
To prepare for a sales call, you want to make sure you understand the following items in a comprehensive, up-to-date manner (this is not an exhaustive list):
- Your product or service,
- What gap in the market your product or service fills,
- How you are marketing that product or service (i.e., are there any promotions you are running to draw in clients?)
- Who your competitors are and what they sell,
- How your competitors are marketing and pricing themselves,
- How your customers receive a better value using your company over competitors,
- What the average cost is for customers in your industry who are looking to purchase your type of product or service; and
- Your strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities.
Executing the Call
Here are four steps to executing a flawless and profitable sales call with a potential client.
1) Let them know you care.
When entering a sales call, it’s important to make it personable yet professional. The way to go about this is to share with your caller what you would like to cover on the call. Make the first thing you wish to cover a dedicated time to get to know your potential client’s (1) issues needing solutions and (2) goals and hopes for the future. Here are some questions to get you started:
- How did you hear about our company?
- What made you want to speak with me today?
- What issue do you have that we could potentially solve?
- What are your hopes for the future in this area of need?
Having a connection with the client will enable you to have a much smoother conversation, one that is relaxed and relieved of pressure for both parties.
2) Drive home your company’s message.
At the end of the day, the phone call’s main goal is to close on a sale, while simultaneously meeting a demand of a client. So, you need to make sure you study before going into the call. What is your value proposition? Make sure your words are clear, concise, and hit home how this person could greatly benefit from purchasing your company’s products and/or services.
3) Give them an idea of what is in store for them moving forward.
What will day-to-day operations look like for them, now that they have your product or service? What will their new workflow look like? How will it make things wildly easier and more efficient for them? Tell this story with descriptive and enticing words that impact their five senses. Make this not just a company selling a product or service; make this a sensory experience that will deeply impact them in all areas of life.
4) Bring the call to a nice close.
Start off by thanking them for their time and interest, as their time is exceedingly valuable. Remember, they did not have to give you the time of day, but they wanted to because they saw something potentially useful for them in your company. Tell them you will follow up with an email, reciting what you discussed on the call and any action points you both agreed upon for each of you to take.
Lastly, if you do not follow-up in some way after the call, you will most likely lose the customer. Being timely, courteous, and thorough is vital. Send a follow up email right after the call and then another one a week later. If it is appropriate, give them a phone call at that time, as well. This will help you to win the client over, showing them you are serious about their business, trustworthy, and organized enough to hand you their business.