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Seven Don’ts for Your Cold Call Sales Script

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

The following are seven things to avoid when developing a cold call sales script:

1. Don’t do all of the talking

Two-way conversations with both parties contributing and engaged are the most productive and powerful no matter the setting. Try doing what you can to create conversations which have this dynamic where both parties are involved and talking which will result in good cold calls.

We all know that you’ll speak with various types of people where some will be more talkative than others in which you have no control over. But you do have control over how you develop your cold call script and can have it structured in a way that there are times where the prospect is prompted to talk as well as answer questions.

2. Don’t share your title

Sharing their title and role in their internal organization is one thing which many sales people do during the introduction of their cold call sales script. An example would be, someone may say, “And I’m the regional sales manager in the distributed application systems department.”

That information means very little to the prospect and it wastes valuable time during the cold call even though the sales person is proud of their role and their title means something when they’re talking to other people within their company. The reality is besides wasting time, sharing a sales title could create a negative impact because it triggers the prospect’s guardedness when they hear you’re a sales person.

3. Don’t talk about your products and services in your introduction

Avoid talking too much regarding what you sell in your introduction in the cold call script. This tends to trigger the prospect’s guardedness. When you talk about products and services, the prospect begins to think, “Oh wonderful, yet another sales person attempting to sell me something” and they can begin to shut down.

4. Don’t forget to discuss the value that you offer

Commonly, we leave the value that we have to offer out of the script. A good opening for you to insert the value that you have to offer is presented if you’re taking product and service details out of your introduction.

5. Don’t make your script too long

Take caution in not making your cold call sales script too long. Realistically, you only have about 2 to 5 minutes to work with during the cold call. You’re taking too much of the prospect’s time as well as attempting to accomplish too much while on the cold call if you go over that time frame.

6. Don’t go into too much about your products and services

During your cold call sales script, don’t go into too much detail surrounding your products and services. Save that for your first meeting with the prospect as there isn’t enough time to adequately do that during your conversation.

7. Don’t try to sell your products and services

Attempting to sell their products and services during the calling script is the most common mistake sales people make. There simply isn’t enough time to truly build interest and close the sale. The goal here is to close the prospect on continuing to talk beyond the cold call which leads toward a larger conversation or meeting.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script generator to help sales pros with their cold call sales script.


Qualify in Your Phone Sales Script

Saturday, March 23rd, 2013

Adding qualifying questions to assist in qualifying the prospect is a very simple thing to do to make your phone sales script more powerful.

What is Qualifying?

The act of attempting to figure out how good the prospect fits with what you’re offering and how probable they are to move forward with a purchase is qualifying.

A prospect is truly qualified if they have an actual need in the area where your products and services help, they have the decision making authority to purchase as well as they have the ability to purchase from as far as funding.

Soft Qualify First

We’ll want to go through some probing questions which determine need, authority, and available budget to thoroughly qualify a prospect. We might only have a few minutes with the prospect during our very first conversation when performing phone sales and cold calling. It is helpful to focus on doing some preliminary qualifying on the very first call to just ensure there’s enough of a fit to keep talking and possibly meet on another day.

Focusing your questions around the prospect’s needs in your area is a way to find out how much qualifying to do in your phone sales script. It doesn’t make sense to keep talking if they definitely have no needs. Then, you can sort out the authority and budget details later in your first real meeting.

Decrease the Prospect’s Guard

Helping to decrease the prospect’s guardedness is a great effect that qualifying questions have on a phone sales script. Reason being when asking questions to evaluate the prospect’s needs, you’re expressing interest in them as well as interest in ensuring that they’re a fit before you sell to them.

This creates a powerful effect which makes the prospect more open to hearing about what you’re calling them about as well as helps to increase the level of rapport that you have with the prospect.

Make the Conversation More Engaging

Conversations in which both parties are talking and contributing are going to be more healthy and productive regardless of the setting. Keeping that in mind, it is wise to create your phone sales script so that it creates two-way conversations in which the prospect is talking and involved in the conversation.

That may be tough to instigate since everybody is different and some people talk more than others, but by just adding qualifying questions to your sales script, it will force moments in the conversation in which the prospect has to contribute as well as interject into the conversation.

Uncover Valuable Information

Helping you uncover important and valuable information from the prospect is the most obvious benefit to adding qualifying questions to your sales script. That information helps you in determining if it makes sense to keep talking as well as it can be used throughout the sales cycle.

SalesScripter provides a sales script generator that helps sales pros to develop a phone sales script.


Sales Script Example

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

calling scriptsThe following is a sales script example utilizing a structured script framework which contains seven different parts. Keeping in mind that every sales person sells different products, we’ll use an example or product which the majority of people can relate to which is a car sales person attempting to schedule an appointment to sell a vehicle. We are all aware that this is not how cars are typically sold. This is simply an example scenario.

1. Introduction

Some form of an introduction is needed for every sales script. In the case of telesales, you might have a need for two introductions, with one being for the gatekeeper and one for the target prospect.

“Hello, my name is Steven Johnson with Imperial Autos. Have I caught you in the middle of something?”

2. Value Statement

Share a few details about what you have to offer immediately following your introduction. Sharing a value statement that is one sentence which communicates how you can help is the best way to do this.

“The purpose for my call is that we assist individuals in improving their ability to transition into a vehicle which better meets their needs.”

3. Disqualify Statement

Disqualifying the prospect early in the call by questioning if they are the right fit is a psychological tactic in this sales script example. By doing this it can decrease the prospect’s guard, develop curiosity as well as build rapport.

“I am not sure if you are a good fit for what we have to offer, so I just had a couple of questions for you.”

4. Qualifying Questions

Questions to help qualify the prospect are included in this sales script example. Qualifying questions assist in ensuring that you’re spending your valuable time with the right prospects as well as help in getting the prospect talking and more involved in the conversation.

  • “How happy are you with your vehicle?”
  • “What year is your vehicle?”
  • “If there was anything that you could change about your vehicle, what would that be?”

5. Common Pain Points

Sharing some common challenges which others have been experiencing is a way to help uncover challenges that the prospect may be having.

“Oh, okay. Well, when we speak with other individuals, we find that they sometimes express challenges that their current vehicle is:

  • not fuel efficient
  • not a good fit for their growing family
  • simply old and doesn’t have the latest features.

Which one of those can you relate to the most?”

6. Building Interest Points

You can have some strong points at the end of your sales script to help trigger interest which will be needed at some point.

“Oh, I see. Well, it might be productive for us to talk in more detail.

  • As I mentioned, I am with Imperial Autos and we have ten auto dealerships offering the widest range of brands.
  • We use a “no haggle” sales approach so you will know you’re getting the best available price with us.
  • We have been in business for thirty years as well as have won many awards for customer service.”

7. Close

The following is a sales script example for an attempt to close.

“Since I’ve called you out of the blue, I do not want to take any more of your time to talk right now. What I would like to do is schedule some time with you where we can discuss your needs in more detail and share with you what value and insight that we have to offer against that. Are you available next week for a brief meeting?”

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool that provides a sales script example.


Benefits of Using a Sales Script

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

By surveying 100 salespeople, you would conclude that the majority of them don’t use any form of a sales script. Scripts are often perceived as a hassle to develop, but in reality, there are valuable benefits from using them.

Improves How you Sound
You clearly sound better when talking with prospects by using sales scripts. It’ll make you appear polished and prepared for your conversations and meetings.

A lot of people think that using a script makes you appear more amateur if you’re using a guide. The key is to use a script in a way which your prospect doesn’t realize you’re going through prepared statements and questions.

Improves the Impression that You Make
You’ll immediately improve the impression you make with prospects by improving the way you sound. This can be monumental when attempting to improve your results, particularly when applying this to cold calling.

Typically, you’ll only have a few minutes to work with which means you really need to make a great impression quickly and one key way to do that is by using a sales script.

Improves Rapport

You’re more likely to be better at building rapport when you improve the impression made on a sales prospect. When prospects perceive you as prepared and polished, they‘ll have more respect for you which makes them more comfortable speaking with you.

Rapport is critical because prospects buy from salespeople they like. Also, having rapport makes the prospect more responsive during the sales cycle which definitely impacts your results.

Improves Effectiveness

There are a number of different boxes you need to check during short conversations with prospects in being effective. You need to get their attention, qualify them, find pain they may be experiencing, build interest, have the ability to deal with objections, close the deal, etc.

It greatly improves your ability to check all the boxes by using a sales script. By improving your consistency with scripts, you’ll improve your overall effectiveness when speaking with prospects.

Improves Lead Generation

When adding up all the benefits we have discussed so far, it’s safe to conclude that using a sales script leads to immediate improvement in lead generation and sales results.

Decreases Stress

Using a sales script helps to decrease stress while cold calling and meeting with prospects which is a key benefit. Stress results from entering a situation unprepared with no knowledge of what to do and it increases when you face tough resistance and objections from prospects.

A sales script helps make you feel more prepared as well as leads to more confidence and less stress. When interacting with prospects that are being difficult, you’ll have the knowledge to deal with them which avoids stress that would’ve developed otherwise.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool that helps sales pros to develop their sales script.


Keys to a Sales Pitch Script

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

There are key things which can be done to make your sales pitch script powerful and strong.

Communicate Value

Clearly communicating the value you’re offering is the initial thing which needs to be focused on with your sales script. The benefits which you deliver to your customers or clients and how you help them is value.

Technical, business, and personal are the three different levels in which value is broken down.

Technical value: How you help your clients at the smallest and basic level is technical value. Usually, this is at the level of systems, people, and processes. The technical value that you offer is when you help to make any of those areas work better.

Business value: Technical improvements which you make will work its way up to create benefits and improvements at the business level and these are improvements in the areas of revenue, costs, and customers.

Personal value: It often leads to improvements which impact your clients at a personal level when you help them to achieve technical and business improvements. Areas such compensation, career growth, and workload show this.

Build Interest

It is vital to include language which will help you in building interest in your sales pitch script.

Connect value with pain: Try displaying a connection between the pain the prospect is experiencing and the value that you offer. Include communicating how the value you are offering will help solve the prospect’s pain.

Communicate ROI: Communicate the ROI (return on investment) which other clients of yours have accomplished by investing in your products and services. You can make your sales script pitch more powerful by giving quantitative figures.

Communicate how you differ: Communicating how you differ from competitors as well as from the prospect’s other options is one of the best ways to build interest.

Outline threats from doing nothing: The option to do nothing and not make a purchase is always there for the prospect. It could help to communicate to the prospect what negative outcomes could happen if they choose to do nothing.

Share key company facts: Key company facts which are details about your company which are impressive as well as decent bragging points should have a place in your sales pitch script. Examples are years in business, market share, awards, client details, etc.

Client stories: There is nothing more powerful than telling a story about an existing or past client. You build credibility as well as build interest when you’re able to display how you helped another business.

Trial Close

The trial close is one small, yet important and powerful step which is often left out of a sales pitch script. Basically, this means checking in with the prospect to find out what their thoughts. Ask the prospect instead so you know where you stand and what direction you are heading instead of assuming when creating a sales pitch script.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool to help with developing a sales pitch script.


How to Build a Sales Script for Sales

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Often it is the difference between success and failure in having a sales script for sales. Here are a few steps that you can take to help you with how to build your sales script.

1. Identify the Goal

You should have clear awareness with each sales call you make with what you’re hoping to get out of the call. Are you attempting to schedule an appointment? Are you trying to sell your product? Are you trying to collect information?

Before writing your sales script, get clarity around what your primary goal is for the call. Also, it can be prudent to go one step more to identify your secondary goal if you’re not able to accomplish what you your primary goal.

2. Identify the Target

Clearly identifying who you’re calling and your ideal prospect is another step you need to take before writing a sales script for sales. This is important because it impacts the wording and questions you use.  Also, building out the ideal prospect profile can assist you in maximizing your time when making calls.

3. Identify Your Value

Quite often sales people fall into the rut of only talking about their products and the company they work for when speaking with prospects. It is important information, but it doesn’t shine light on the benefits offered and delivered.

Primarily, the prospect cares about “What is in it for me?” Communicating the value that you have to offer is the best way to answer that question for the prospect. Be sure to identify this as well as put it early on in your sales script for sales.

4. Build Your Qualifying Questions

Include questions to qualify the prospect when writing a sales script for sales. It is important because it can help in determining if it makes sense for both parties to keep conversing.  Also, they help to make the interaction with the prospect more conversational.

5. Gather Some Common Pain Points

It is helpful to uncover some pain which the prospect is experiencing. Sharing some common pain points that other prospects are experiencing and conveying that to the prospect to see if they can relate is one sales tactic to use to assist with that.

6. Develop Points to Trigger Interest

You’ll need to build some level of interest on the prospect’s side to improve your ability to reach your primary goal. Add some points in your sales script for sales which will trigger some interest to help with that.

Even if you are not able to build enough interest to close the deal or completely sell the prospect, you can create powerful points which will build enough curiosity and interest for the prospect to commit to keep speaking with you as well as move on to the next step in your sales process.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool that helps sales pros with writing a sales script for sales.


Sales Scripts that Sell

Sunday, February 17th, 2013

It can be the difference between success and failure being able to develop sales scripts that sell. Commonly, it is believed that there’s not much which can be done to make a sales script better as well as it’s really simply the product that’s going to sell. In reality, there are fundamental things which can be done to improve the effectiveness of your script.  They are outlined below.

Communicate Value

Effectively communicating the value we have to offer to prospects that we speak with is one thing often left out or forgotten when developing sales scripts that sell. Of course we are great at explaining what our products do and how wonderful they are, but that doesn’t communicate the value that we have to offer.

“What is in it for me?” is the main thing prospects are concerned with and the value that you offer answers that question. How your product helps is value.

Qualify the Prospect

Questions which qualify the prospect are another thing to include in sales scripts that sell. Qualifying questions check to see how if what we have to offer is a fit for the prospects.

Attempting to sell to everybody that we get the opportunity to speak with is one common mistake made. Realistically, not everybody is a good fit so we should ask some qualifying questions to help qualify or disqualify the prospect.

Find Prospect Pain

By developing your qualifying questions correctly, it helps to find pain when you go through them with the prospect. One of the important keys to developing sales scripts that sell is having the ability to find pain.

When a prospect presents no pain, there isn’t a reason for the prospect to make a purchase. On the flips side, the more pain that we are able to uncover, the higher the likelihood of the prospect to move forward with a purchase.

Build Interest

People sometimes think that the prospect will find out what your product is about and either have interest or not. This is not exactly true because there are many things which you can say about your product and your company to create interest as well as you can develop your sales script so that it contains powerful building interest points which are vital for creating sales scripts that sell.

Build Rapport

One of the major keys to success is building rapport because people buy from people that they like as well as establishing rapport assists in getting the prospect to be responsive, share information, and be in agreement to commit to the next step. There are some small things which can be added to develop sales scripts that sell.

Build Credibility

Building credibility is often skipped. When trying to develop a powerful sales script, you it is helpful to include name drops as well as customer examples which help to establish your credibility early on and this develops sales scripts that sell.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script development tool that helps to create sales scripts that sell.


Powerful Questions for Sales People (Part II)

Sunday, December 16th, 2012

Questions for Sales PeopleThe following are eleven great questions for sales people. At times, to be an effective salesperson, it’s not necessarily regarding knowing all the correct answers, but more about knowing the correct questions to ask.

6. What do you want to do next?

Commonly, sales people push prospects to move forward. Partly, this is trying to have the prospect do what the sales person would like to do next as far as meeting, looking at a demo, reviewing paperwork, etc.

Sometimes it is more powerful to ask the prospect what they would like to do next. You can suggest some directions in which to go, but checking in, obtaining the prospect’s opinion as well as making the forward direction initiate from them, is a healthy direction to go in regards to building relationships and creating good, quality leads.

7. When would you like to meet again?

Like the last question, asking the prospect when they want to meet again or in what pace they would like to move is a good direction to go.

A large majority of sales people will push prospects to meet and move as fast as possible which makes this question powerful. In retrospect, letting the prospect decide how quickly to move can be one of the questions for sales people that will have a positive impact.

8. Currently, how do you feel about your system/provider on a scale from 1 to 10?

Most likely, your prospect is already using something in your area. Whenever that’s the case, you want to find out how things are going with that. For example, are things great, are things OK, or could things be better? By finding this out you are helping with your efforts to create leads as well as qualify prospects.

It is not best to spend too much of your time with prospects that state they’re doing great because they might be tough to get to change. You want to be looking for those prospects that are just OK or could be better. This is one of the questions for sales people that will assist with that.

9. What is the decision making process?

You will always want to find out how much decision making power the prospect has as well as who is the ultimate decision maker. Sometimes, this can be a bit of a touchy subject to bring up, but by simply asking what the decision making process is and mapping it out will significantly help you in identifying where the authority lies.

10. Is there a budget approved for the purchase?

Identifying if the prospect has the budget to spend money is another key area to look at when qualifying prospects. Some questions for sales people which assist with this are to ask if there’s a budget that has been approved for the purchase in which the prospect is considering.

11. What is the range of your budget that you’re trying to stay within?

Finding out how much the prospect is looking to spend is another important area you want to look into. It can be tough, but one way to approach this is by being very direct and asking what the current budget range is that they’re trying to stay within.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool that provides questions for sales people.


Challenges with Managing via the Sales Funnel

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

sales funnel The concept of a sales funnel is one of the most common models for managing sales activities and teams.  You put in an amount of activity into the top of the funnel and out of that you get a certain number of conversations.  Then, from those conversations, you’ll obtain a certain number of firm appointments.  Out of the appointments set, you’ll get a certain amount of sales leads.  This pattern continues leading up to the fact that a percentage of leads produced should be closed and this is what comes out of the bottom of the sales funnel.

There are three pitfalls that can limit the reliability and consistency of this model.

1.   Assuming Effort = Results

When subscribing to the sales funnel model, we’re believing that putting in an amount of activity in the top of the funnel will lead to some amount of results.  But, effort alone is not guaranteed to lead to any results in the world of sales.  With hard work and a high level of effort, but bad messaging and technique, we could see little or no results.  The business world is very competitive and if we come in second, we won’t get any kudos for trying real hard.  In conclusion, if we put just any amount of activity in the funnel with an expectation that results will be produced, we are creating an expectation built on a weak foundation.

2.  Assuming Ratios are Static

Believing the ratios throughout the sales funnel are somewhat fixed and should be the same for everybody is another pitfall we can fall into.  This would hint that the expectation for everyone on the sales team should be to have the same conversion rates throughout the funnel – creating conversations from cold calls, converting conversations to meetings, and for converting leads to closed deals. It would be unrealistic to have expectations for different members of a sales team to have similar funnel shapes due to there are many factors involved as well as every sales person is unique.

Also, we can get caught up on assuming the conversion rates are what they are as well as there are not a lot of things we can do to improve them.  There may be belief that hit rates, lead rates, and close rates are possibly fixed.  In addition, it may be believed that the main variable we need to focus on and manage is activity level that is put into the top of the sales funnel.

3.  Only looking at the top of the funnel

We can easily get caught up on only focusing on the top of the sales funnel and the level of activity that we’re putting in.  Because we need more sales, we throw more callers and actual dials at the problem. Obviously, we need to make calls because we can’t just wait around for prospects to call us, but this strategy is flawed if our message or our technique is off.  We could be doing more of a misdirected approach and the extra effort might not yield results which is a waste of time and money.

Launch Pad Solutions provides sales consulting helping managers to improve the sales funnel.


How to Develop Good Phone Scripts

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

phone scriptsA sales person can make a big difference by writing good phone scripts. The following are key things that you’ll want to include when creating your calling scripts.

1. Identify your value

A step that is often left out is language which communicates the core value being offered.  Often we will discuss the company that we’re representing as well as the products that we’re selling, but that doesn’t communicate the value that we’re offering.

How will your products or services be beneficial to the prospect? It can be broken down into three separate categories: technical, business, and personal.

Determine the benefits and value that you’re offering and include some statements which communicate this in your phone scripts.

2. Outline some qualifying questions

We could try to sell to everyone that answers or takes our sales calls. Realistically, not everybody is a good fit. When someone isn’t a good fit and we try selling to them, we stand to increase the chance of wasting time by speaking with prospects which have little chance of buying anything.

By including a few light qualifying questions in our phone scripts, we can help to avoid that.  Also, have those qualifying questions makes our cold calls more conversational as well as helps to decrease your prospect’s guard.

3. Gather some common pain points

To be effective at telesales, it is important to have the ability to uncover pain that the prospect is experiencing. If pain isn’t present, they won’t have a true reason to purchase from us and they won’t have a reason to keep speaking to us.

Including some common pain points in your sales scripts that other prospects have experienced is a great way to uncover pain. Create a list of good pain points and share those with your prospect to determine if they can relate as well as if they’re experiencing anything similar.

4. List out some statements that can build interest

You will need to build some level of interest in order to keep prospects on the phone and get them to commit to future steps. While generating complete interest can be challenging and time consuming, there are ways to trigger initial interest over the phone while speaking with prospects.

Developing a few powerful building interest points is a great tactic to use here.  They can be used towards the end of your phone scripts to attempt to hook the prospect before going for your close.

5. Focus on the next step

There’s always something to close when speaking with a prospect. It might not be closing the sale in the first few conversations, but you’ll still need to close for the next step in the process.

Identify the next step in your sales process and focus on that at the end of sales scripts.

Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool to help sales pros with building phone scripts.