Although we’d all like to believe our potential clients will regularly swarm to us by the thousands, the reality of the situation is that if you want to get their attention, you’ve got to put in some serious leg work. One of the most daunting, yet rewarding, methods in doing so is a well-crafted telephone lead generation campaign, and these cold calls are not for the faint of heart. It takes a special personality to have success with such a task, and identifying these qualifying traits will allow you to entrust the responsibility of your future business dealings in capable hands. Although getting the right person on the phone at the appropriate time flirts with the element of chance, there are some things you can look for to determine who will be a competent sales caller, thus ensuring a fruitful calling campaign.
One of the most crucial traits a sales caller should possess is adaptability. Possessing an acute ability to “read” unsaid cues over the phone is a useful tool as well. This functions on several tiers, beginning with gauging the situation and moving forward with the conversation accordingly. When someone answers the phone, you can tell their state of mind almost immediately. For example, a good sales caller will notice if a prospect appears rushed or agitated and will adapt the pitch by eliminating unnecessary information and getting straight to the point.
Another function of adaptability is figuring out what type of person (both based on the position of the prospect and personality) they are dealing with and planning the benefit statements according to what most likely concerns that person most. When speaking to a business owner, it’s likely that one of the most important factors is cost, so diving right into money-saving capabilities of your product will likely resonate with them and catch their attention. Any good sales caller knows that strategizing a pitch based on both the individual and circumstances makes it far more likely to strike a chord of interest and have them agree with what is being asked of them.
In addition to the ability to adapt, a good sales caller should be likeable and professional to the utmost extent. Pronunciation and clarity, along with voice inflection, can help determine whether or not someone is going to take you seriously within the first few seconds of speaking. After all, a caller has only about the first 10 seconds of the call to sell themselves, so presenting professionally will give prospects the impression of authority and make them less likely to dismiss the call.
A caller who is likeable and pleasant can often persuade prospects to take an appointment even if they don’t have an immediate need for the service. Starting a conversation about a popular restaurant in the area, for example, helps to warm up the prospect and takes an otherwise impersonal call to a friendly level. On the contrary, a dismissive and pushy caller is going to defer the prospect from taking a meeting, even if they liked the product being presented. Choosing a sales caller with the ability to appeal to people while maintaining a professional persona will yield the best results for a calling campaign and can only mean good things for your business.
Lastly, one of the most frustrating yet important parts of being a good sales caller is having the ability to be persistent and goal-driven. As previously mentioned, getting the right person on the phone is often a matter of luck, so someone who gives up after getting voicemail two or three times will not have what it takes to succeed. While one should be careful not to be a pest, there is nothing wrong with calling a prospect multiple times if they are always missing them and getting voicemail. A good sales caller will take diligent notes and be aware of a pattern if one arises. For example, is a prospect has proven to be consistently unreachable during the afternoon, instead of taking them off the list, they may make note of it and perhaps try them in the morning on the next dial.
There is also the matter of being persistent to get through screeners. Oftentimes receptionists won’t put a sales caller through once they’ve introduced themselves because it becomes apparent that it is a cold call. One effective method a good caller might utilize on the next dial is to simply skip the introduction and ask for the prospect by name and with authority. More often than not, the screener won’t ask questions and will put the call through as opposed to prying and refusing. In addition, the lead generator will get the prospect’s extension. One must be effective at getting screeners and colleagues of the decision maker to answer questions along the way to the decision maker, which makes for a warmer call once the decision maker finally shows up. It sometimes takes a few tries to feel out the situation, so a caller who gives up after their first unsuccessful attempt is not going to have many successful outcomes in this realm.
Once you’ve made the decision to utilize a lead generation campaign to market your business, you must realize that you’re only as good as the quality of sales callers doing the work. Keeping in mind the aforementioned traits will allow you to select high quality, competent people to execute your campaign. Selecting a person who is likeable, persistent, and has the ability to adapt and practice keen listening skills is a great start in finding individuals that will both attain results and represent your business favorably.
Leah Skye is a lead generator for MarketReach Inc., based out of Lawrenceville, NJ. MarketReach Inc. provides business to business outbound telephone marketing.