Archive for the ‘Inside Sales’ Category
Thursday, March 14th, 2013
Every business and sales professional has the desire and need to achieve sales growth. With the difficulty to get prospects on the phone, it is critical to incorporate an email strategy that is effective at getting the prospect’s attention and getting you in the door. Even though that is a reasonable thought, it still can be challenging to figure out how to best utilize the valuable tool of email marketing.
It is important to know the environment that you are operating in in order to figure out how to best operate. The first thing to be cognizant of is your prospects are likely getting a large volume of emails from sales people like you. And to add another challenge to that, your prospects are likely extremely busy.
This is the environment. There is nothing that you can do to change any of that. Acknowledge this. Be aware of what you have to deal with so that you can design the best approach.
The Good News
The good news is that there are some very clear and practical things that you can do to improve your results and effectiveness. We will share those with you and if you apply some of the tips that we share, you will likely see an immediate improvement in your results.
The Solution – The Magic 5 of Email Content Based Email Campaigns that Drive Sales
SalesNexus recently released a series of 6 Sales Growth Webinars and accompanying eBooks that outline the process of targeting prospects, engaging them with emails and drawing them toward your business as long term customers. The first of these is “The Magic 5 of Content Based Email Marketing that Drives Sales.”
Start with these three sets of five emails. They should be easy to identify and create.
5 PAINS: What are the most common pains your service addresses? When you work with your ideal client, what problems do you solve? You want to look beyond the technical pain of what needs fixing to the business pain that causes them economic loss. The most effective way to develop trust is to dig deep into discovering the REAL pain…what causes them to lose sleep?
5 QUALIFYING QUESTIONS: How do you know when they’re ready to buy? Can you quantify what sort of clients brings you a higher average sale? Don’t spend much time on demographics. Instead, focus on identifying the decision maker and budget. You can easily determine your qualifying questions by tracking the data on your CRM.
5 FAQs: What questions are most commonly asked by those who are interested in what you offer? Do they ask about the set up process or delivery time? When they are ready to buy, do they want to know the difficulty of set up or installation? Do they inquire about your customer service option or refund policy?
It really is easy to start developing relationships with your prospective customers when you use a CRM solution to manage the sales process and gather data. When your email program is integrated into the CRM, it is even easier. Check out what is possible by attending a series of Sales Growth Webinars at no cost to you.
The Magic 5 process is the key to filling your pipeline with quality leads that your sales team can close now. The Sales Growth Webinar series dives into the specific components of identifying your customer’s pain, qualifying sales leads, managing your pipeline, forecasting future sales, sharing information with your team and effective sales messaging.
View the entire series of webinars on video at your convenience and download each ebook here or choose the specific topics you’re most interested in:
The Magic 5 of Content Based Email Marketing that Drives Sales
A simple 5 step process to create on-going, automated email campaigns that engage your audience and identify highly qualified prospects.
Building a Successful Marketing and Sales Process by Identifying Your Customer’s “Pain”
How to identify the emotional circumstances that cause customers to buy from you, how to question prospects to diagnose their “pains” and build sales processes that win!
How to Qualify Sales Leads and Focus on Sales Growth that’s Profitable
Use simple questioning techniques to determine if a sales lead will purchase and the powerful impact of consistent qualifying.
Manage a Sales Process of Actions that Lead to Sales Growth
What should be measured in every sales process, how to set goals for and measure it and how to manage sales people to achieve business growth.
360 degree View of the Customer Relationship for Business Growth
How strong relationships between customers and companies drive business growth and the risk of mistaking a customer to sales person relationship with a customer to company relationship.
The 4 Pillars of a Sales Messaging Strategy that Drives Growth
How to communicate what your products and services do for your customers, get their attention and understand their needs, with Michael Halper, author of “The Cold Calling Equation”
By simply taking some of the concepts discussed in these books and modules, you are likely to see immediate results in terms of sales growth.
Sunday, March 10th, 2013
The 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.
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.”
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.
Friday, March 8th, 2013
It is helpful for a sales person to have a template for a follow-up sales email. Basically, this is an email with information already filled in where you simply change a few details and then it is fast and easy to shoot out the email when needed.
Particularly, this is helpful for a sales person which might be cold calling and sales prospecting because one of the most common objections is prospects that ask that you just send them information. You should try to get around this objection first, but in some cases the only next available step is to send an email to the prospect. If you’re composing emails each time you need one, you’ll be spending a lot of extra time which can be saved by creating email follow-up templates.
Simple Follow-up Sales Email Strategy
You can save valuable time by creating documents or templates with text outlined which can fit different sales follow-up scenarios. Depending on the type of business, the scenarios can vary, but a lot of prospects request basic company information, pricing information, product information as well as customer reference information.
These templates can be kept in a word document stored on your hard drive or if you have a customer relationship management system, you might have the ability to create templates in the system to easily and quickly be sent and documented by clicking a few buttons under the contact.
Advanced Follow-up Sales Email Strategy
Creating a thread of emails which are tied together and sent out to a prospect at different times over a period of a few weeks is an advanced and effective approach. An example is when a prospect asks for information to be sent, an email will be sent that moment, with a second email a week later, and a third email a couple of weeks later.
This approach has strong benefits. First, using multiple emails gives you the ability to provide more information to the prospect by splitting everything up across multiple messages. With those messages being delivered at different times, the absorption of the amount of information can be greater. In addition, this improves your ability to get the prospect’s attention and response by contacting them multiple times.
An important requirement for the more advanced follow-up sales email approach is a CRM application to automate this process. A lot of systems give you the ability to set up the templates in a campaign with the email delivery being scheduled and automated. What is great about that is once you press send on the first email, you can pretty much forget about the prospect, but they’ll continue receiving emails and often feel obligated to give a response by the third email.
Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script development tool that will produce a follow-up sales email template.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Sunday, March 3rd, 2013
The following is a sales script sample. Following the example, we’ll break down a few of the main parts of the script to help you to build one similar for your product and business.
Sales Script Sample
Hello, I’m trying to connect the director of IT. Can you point me in the right direction?
Hi, Tom. This is Tina Jones with Latitude. Have I caught you in the middle of something at this time?
Great, the purpose of my call is that we assist businesses with improving the reliability of their business services.
I actually don’t know if what we provide is a good fit for you, so I just had a couple of questions.
- Are you currently doing active monitoring of your applications and infrastructure?
- Are you knowledgeable about problems before or while they occur?
Common Pain Examples
As we speak with other IT directors, they express concerns with:
- There are so many alerts that they don’t know where the real problems are
- Problems occur and they never receive notification
- Don’t have knowledge of what business services the problems are impacting
Which one of those can you relate to the most?
Building Interest Points
Based on what we discussed, it might be productive for us to talk in more detail.
As I said, I’m with Latitude and we provide application and infrastructure monitoring as well as management solutions.
We differ from other options out there by our technology predicts problems before they occur.
We typically reduce time to repair by 15 to 20%.
Since I’ve called you out of the blue, I don’t want to take any more of your time to talk right now. If you have interest, a great next step would be for us to schedule a 15 to 20 minute meeting where we can discuss your needs in more detail and share what amount of value and insight that we have to offer against that. How does your schedule look next Tuesday or Thursday?
Explanation of the Sales Script
The following is an explanation of the main sections of the sales script sample:
Introduction: You’ll likely need two introductions in every sales script, one being for the gatekeeper and one being for your target prospect.
Value Statement: To grab the prospect’s attention and tell them why they should spend the next 2 to 5 minutes speaking with you, give them a value statement at the beginning of the sales script.
Disqualify: There’s a statement to disqualify the prospect in the sales script sample. This helps decrease the prospect’s guard, stir up curiosity as well as build some rapport.
Qualifying Questions: Because not every prospect will be a fit, you should ask some qualifying questions to ensure it makes sense for both parties to keep speaking.
Common Pain Examples: You increase the number of leads if you increase the amount of pain you are able to find. A way to uncover pain your prospect may be experiencing is by sharing examples which other prospects and clients have experienced.
Building Interest Points: Share some powerful points to trigger more interest on the prospect’s side toward the end of the call before going for the close.
Close: In every conversation with a prospect, there is something you are trying to close. This sales script sample gives you some language for setting an appointment.
Launch Pad Solutions provides a sales script tool to help sales pros develop a sales script sample of their own.
Thursday, February 28th, 2013
There are key things which can be done to make your sales pitch script powerful and strong.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Sunday, December 16th, 2012
The 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.
Sunday, December 9th, 2012
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.
Tuesday, November 27th, 2012
A 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.