Business owners and salespeople often use phone calls to book appointments with clients and prospective customers. To do this successfully you need confidence in the relationship-building aspect of telemarketing. You have the responsibility of displaying your product or service in an honest and professional way and you are aware of the value of what it means to exceed the expectations of your customer.
But what steps can you take to guarantee your best chance of securing an appointment?
1. Have A Plan
Preparation is vital. When you go into a conversation prepared with what you want to say, you can be confident that you are covering all important matters. You will be able to keep control of the conversation and bring it back if it drifts off-topic.
2. Make Your Offer Early
It is important to spark interest early on and to combat objections promptly with an offer that is full of benefits. You need to be quick to ensure negativity does not affect the customer’s decision.
3. Conversation Is Key
Ask short, open questions to gage as much information as possible from the customer. Your questions should be relevant to ensure you keep their attention and you should repeat their answers back to them when suitable. Talking for too long and confusing the client with your questions can lead to them tuning out of the conversation.
4. Handle Objections
Show the customer that you understand their situation by recognising their objections. Use phrases like ‘I understand how you feel.’ Let them know that you have had other customers that had similar objections when they first came onboard. This will demonstrate that you are experienced. Clarify that the purpose of the appointment is to understand their position and then suggest an appointment time.
5. Don’t Give In The First Time
Objections are inevitable and when they happen, it is important not to repeat the objection back to the customer or go too much into it. Don’t take any objections personally and ask the right questions to better understand their answer. It is common for it to take a number of conversations with the prospective customer before they accept your offer of an appointment, so don’t get disheartened if they do not accept the first time around.
6. Don’t Be Afraid Of Uncertainty
Admitting when you don’t know the answer to something or needing to check with someone else is not a bad thing. Building a foundation of trust with your customer is so important and if you bluff your way around their questions, it is likely they will find out and that relationship will be damaged. If you have uncertainty around an objection or question, tell them that, and get back to them with the right information.
7. Research Before You Call
The more you know before picking up the phone, the better. If you have just a name and a phone number, you can still make an effective sales appointment. If all else fails, you can always turn to Google. Or, if you’d rather, you can reach out to your connections on LinkedIn. You can even check with your network contacts to see if you know anyone who knows the prospect. You may be able to get a referral from a mutual contact.
8. Create A Good Opener
Once you get the prospect on the phone, you have about 10-20 seconds before they’re ready to hang up on you. Most people automatically reject you as soon as you start trying to sell them. If you want to get past a potential customer’s rejection filter, you’ll need an opener that surprises or intrigues them. Something that will make them sit up and take notice. Once you have their attention, you can set up an appointment or at least get them to listen to what you have to say.
9. Pick A Benefit That Most Interests Your Prospect
When you have done your research and know more about your prospect, you can better customise your pitch to fit their needs or pain points. This way, you are more likely to get their business. Pick a benefit of your product or service that you think will most appeal to your prospective customer. Explain how that product or service provides this benefit to them. Our billing system helps give you peace of mind.
Timeless Advice Is The Best Advice. Sell the benefits and value, not features. Come prepared, find out what the customer’s concerns are and present them with solutions. When you offer them the chance to find out more about something that they may have a hard time saying no to, offer an appointment.
Are your team following these appointment setting tips?
Contact KONA today for customised training for your business!