When trying to figure out what to do when leaving voicemail in sales, it can be helpful to factor in the assumption that the person you are calling is not going to call you back. If this is a safe assumption to make, from this we can then adjust our strategy and expectations for the message we leave.
Three Factors Influencing “No Call Back”
There are three factors that we can look at to judge if the prospect not calling back is a safe assumption to make.
1. The prospect has no interest
The first and most obvious reason that the prospect is most likely to not call you back is that they have no interest in talking to you or buying what you are selling. It may sound negative or pessimistic to have this thought in mind as we are working to sell but the fact is that, at the point of the voicemail message, we might have not yet had the opportunity to create real interest.
Email and voicemail are not effective tools for building interest and if those are the only ways that we have been able to communicate up until this point, the prospect might have a low to nonexistent level of interest. As a result, there might be a low to nonexistent probability of them returning our call when leaving voicemail.
2. The prospect is interested but is too busy
Moving on to a more optimistic mindset when leaving voicemail, if we assume that our messages or previous conversations have triggered genuine interest and the prospect internally acknowledges the need and plan to call us back, they still might not take action due to size of their workload. If we put ourselves into the mind of our prospects, we can see that it is very realistic for a prospect to hear our voicemail and maybe even write down a note to call us back with our phone number, but they could simply be too busy to ever get to the task of calling us back.
Again, this lack of action or lack of response says nothing about the qualification of the prospect or the level of interest that they have or could grow to have. The prospects that we sell to are simply busier now than ever and they typically work in very fast paced environments with plenty of noise and distractions.
3. The Prospect is interested but taking a passive role
Another reason that a prospect might not call back when you are leaving voicemail is that they might have a decent level of interest and want to talk to you, but they are taking a more passive role and going to just wait for you to call them back.
Most prospects have dealt with many different sales people and they know that not only is it part of the sales person’s job to call the prospect, but most sales people will be persistent and make multiple attempts to try to reach a prospect. With that being the case, a prospect could realistically take no action after hearing a voicemail based on the thought of just waiting for the sales person to call them back again.
What to do with this Assumption
If it is safe to assume that a prospect is not likely to return a voicemail from a cold call, we can then adjust our expectations and strategy. First, this should prevent us from getting upset about the prospect or quality of the lead when there is no call back. From there, we can shift the message from one that is focused on triggering a call back to one that is more designed to educate the prospect.