6 Ways To Kill Your Sales Call

Our Factor 8 trainers hear a lot of sales call intros. Thousands of them. And, the bad news is that there are a lot of bad intros out there. Really, I mean a lot of horrendous intros. The good news? They’re easily fixed and your reps can begin to see an immediate impact by implementing a few tips.

I shared with Sales Hacker how reps can fix their intros. Read about it here. Got a comment or call intro successes to share? I want to hear them! Share them with me on LinkedIn and mention me, @insidesalesadvisor, or on twitter, @factor8sales.

6 Horrendous Ways To Begin Your Sales Call (And What To Do Instead)

sales call intros examples

Coffee is SOOO not for closers anymore

…nor are the cookies for the “Boss Baby” fans out there. But I digress (already!)

Listen, in today’s modern sales era, we don’t typically get face to face meetings.  This is when closing was king. We can assume our contacts are busy and they are hiding from us behind their phones. I mean, how often do you pick up calls from unknown numbers or known vendors?

Coffee Is For Closers

That means the BIG SKILL for inside sales (and smart field / channel sales) isn’t the close, it’s the opening! It’s moneyball folks, you can’t close what you can’t open. OK, I mixed metaphors there. It’s about getting on base with our intro.

My team and I listen to about 1000 phone calls a year, and we’ve categorized the majority of sales intros out there into six horrifying and all-too- common bad-intro buckets.

  1. “Show up and Throw up.” Seriously, I played an actual example of one of these at a conference and we had to fast forward it for time. The customer didn’t talk for 2:24. Guess what he said when he did?
  2.  “Good for You.” Congratulations on being my Account Rep. Did that seriously warrant a call to waste my time?
  3. “Yeah, that’s my Value Prop.” There’s a time and place for your two-second pitch. The intro is NOT it.
  4. “Get out of Jail Free.” Don’t ask them if they’re the person who handles purchasing decisions for your service. Who in their right mind would say “Yes! (And I love vendor calls!)”
  5. “The Set up.” I’m not sure who invented the “That would be of value to you, right?” pitch but I want to hit him every time I hear it (yeah, we both know it was a guy). It just BEGS me to say no. “You want to save money right?” Shut up.
  6. “The Toucher.” Don’t touch my base. Ever.

Sales Call Intros that Work

The good news in this litany of bad is that intros are easy to fix. How? Put your customer at the heart of it. Lead with what’s in it for THEM and not you. Sure YOU want to introduce yourself, but why should THEY care?

In two sentences you can get their attention AND lay out the purpose of your call. How? We call it the SWIIFT intro (So, What’s in it for Them?). This is what I’ll be covering in my webinar on May 24th at 10:00 AM PT. We’ll dig a little deeper & get tools to help you fix intros at your office. Click here to register. If you can’t make it during the live webinar, you’ll still get the recording.

OH! And I collect these now. Send me your hilarious examples of my top 6 offenders. We’ll edit the names to protect the guilty. Yeah, I’d love to hear your good ones too – AND how many more at-bats you and your team are getting. Check out our business development training download for case studies on how fixing intros raised close percentages up to 300%! (oh, so I guess I just told you, but download it anyway ok? It’s new and I’m really proud of it).

So let’s get out there and play some ball! Oh, but now while drinking coffee right? Oh, whatever.

Does Inside Sales Training STILL Have a Problem?

Guest post by John Healy

 

This Hubspot article, Why Inside Sales Has A Training Problem, was published 3 years ago…and still holds true. Why?

Reps Need Inside Sales Training, Not Field Sales Training

Inside Sales reps need training that’s focused on the job you’ve hired them to do (i.e. sell over the phone). Too many companies try to force their field sales training material into the Inside Selling world, or go out and buy generic training on “sales skills.” All this does is make the rep’s job twice as difficult. Now they need to not only learn the new skill, but they also need to figure out how (or if) it translates into selling over the phone.

After training reps around the world over the course of the last 15+ years, I can assure you that the first time they start to think “that doesn’t work here” or “that won’t work with my customers” you’ve lost them. It is the responsibility of the trainer to make the training as close to the real world as possible to minimize the gap between learning and application. Most people will agree with the logic of doing this, but so few companies do it.

Get On The Phones

Reps need training that simulates real world experience. Get them on the phones! There’s no better way to get past the “that won’t work here” argument than to get reps using the skills before the training is even over. Start with some practice in the classroom to let them work the kinks out and make revisions with their peers, but then go out and do it with your customers and get some feedback.

We have a huge advantage in Inside Sales when it comes to speed and ability to execute…why don’t we use it more often? Everyone is in the office together, their customers are right on the other side of the phone, make the dials! If you were doing this in the field it would be impossible to get this kind of customer feedback during training, but not for Inside Sales. We also have the luxury of adjusting on the fly. You can make 15-20 calls in an hour, learn from those calls, make revisions, and make another 20 calls after lunch. Trying moving that fast in the field!

So, let’s get our reps on the phones practicing the skills they need to be successful at their job.

 

 

inside sales training advisorAbout John Healy

John brings over 15 years of Inside Sales and Sales Leadership expertise to Factor 8. He has built and led B2B and public sector sales teams throughout the IT industry with Logicalis, Taxware, and CDW. His passion for driving sales results is matched by his desire to maximize the development of the people that he works with. John holds a Masters in Organizational Leadership, and has served as a mentor and coach for existing and aspiring leaders throughout his career. His unique combination of academic and real work experience has earned him “best coach” designation from many teams. John joined Factor 8 in 2014 and leads our “Coaching as a Service” and Leadership Development lines of business.

 

Do your reps need Inside Sales Training? Factor 8 is an award-winning training firm known for putting Reps live on the phones getting results DURING training. If it’s time to get more revenue from your inside team, check out our Inside Sales Training workshops.  GET ON THE PHONES! It’s the only way to train.

Factor 8 Named Inside Sales Training & Development Provider of the Year

We’re thrilled to announce that Factor 8 took home four industry awards at the Annual AA-ISP Inside Sales Leadership Summit on April 20. The prestigious honors included the 2017 “Inside Sales Training Service Provider of the Year” and three individual designations in the category of “Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals.”

“I’m tremendously proud that we’ve once again been recognized by our industry association and peers with inside sales, AA-ISP,” noted President Lauren Bailey, Factor 8. “Our team is particularly thrilled to receive Inside Sales Training and Development Service Provider of the Year, which is based on direct feedback from the inside sales reps and managers who’ve experienced our training workshops.”

Factor 8 Inside Sales Training and Development

Since 2013, Factor 8 has received numerous designations from AA-ISP, including:

  •     2017 Inside Sales Training Service Provider of the Year
  •     2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014 Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals – Lauren Bailey
  •     2017 Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals – John Healy
  •     2017 Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals – Regina Manfredi
  •     2016 Service Provider of the Year: People Development
  •     2015 AA-ISP Leadership Development Provider of the Year Award
  •     2013 Spirit Award – Lauren Bailey

Learn more about Factor 8’s inside sales training here and manager training here. Follow Lauren Bailey on Twitter @factor8sales.

Join Factor 8 at the AA-ISP Leadership Summit!

Each year, in mid-April, hundreds of inside sales leaders cut the cords on their Y-jacks, hand off the pipeline meetings and come together to be with their peers.

Never been to the AA-ISP Leadership Summit?

It’s like landing in a new country populated entirely by YOUR PEOPLE. These folks speak your language, feel your pain and walk in your shoes.

These are my people, too, and these are my favorite three days of the year.

So if you’re new to the AA-ISP Leadership Summit, I’ll give you a tiny glimpse of how much you’ll love it.

For starters, it’s an absolutely critical investment of time and money for you if:

  1. Inside sales is relatively new to your organization
  2. You’re surrounded with field or channel reps and leaders most of the day
  3. It’s time to grow your inside sales team
  4. You’ve hit a flat line in growth/revenue

If you’re a VP of Sales, Chief Revenue Officer, or Sales Leader, I’m talking to you!

You’ll bring home new trends, great data, specific tools and tricks, five new technologies you want to buy and two new contacts whom you can call for advice.

Frankly, your CEO should require it.

On Day one (April 18 th ), I’ll be doing some trend-busting on stage. During my keynote address, “Where Should We Focus to Drive More Revenue?,” I hope to clear out some noise and help you determine which sales and marketing fads are just fads and which ones might help you drive incremental sales.

Plus, I’ll cover what “good, better, best” looks like and where to begin if your team is just getting started.

I promise you’ll walk away with at least three very tactical action items you can implement immediately (and I mean some that we’ve seen work to drive new sales).

And while you’re at it, check out Regina Manfredi’s session on April 20th called “Making Your Move to the Top.” She’ll show you how to get ahead in inside sales by making the next critical career transition.

Oh! Did I mention the Factor 8 party? If you’re already a “Friend of Factor 8” please stop by our booth (No. 8) and be sure to let us know you’re coming! There’s a killer T-shirt and an invite to the exclusive “after party” waiting for you!

And if we’re not friends yet, let’s fix that. You can find my awesome team (and me) at our booth (yep, No 8). We’ll have the hangover remedy station and a great place to sit down and get a foot massage. Seriously.

Sign up for the AA-ISP Leadership Summit

So, what are you waiting for?

If you haven’t already done so, it’s time to register for the AA-ISP Leadership Summit, mark your calendar for April 18-20th and book that plane ticket to the Windy City.

And—serious bonus points for reading this far—you can save $200 off registration by using code Factor8200! Yep, we’re givers!

Reply in the comments below if I should put a “hold” on a Factor 8 T-shirt with your name on it.

Travel safe!

“LB”

PS: AA-ISP is the global association for inside sales pros (it stands for American Association of Inside Sales Professionals). Sure, they have tons of inside sales events all year long, but the Leadership Summit is an absolute must-attend.

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His stet corpora nostrum in, eu vel soleat ancillae assueverit, eos at everti inermis. Cu assueverit ullamcorper nec. Cu admodum sententiae vis, pri delenit placerat iudicabit id. Duo ne liber primis, eu vel meis idque. Eum quis homero perfecto at, no vel quot probo. Mundi congue ei vel, ne vitae admodum noluisse ius, aeterno quaestio argumentum ut vel.

His stet corpora nostrum in, eu vel soleat ancillae assueverit, eos at everti inermis. Cu assueverit ullamcorper nec. Cu admodum sententiae vis, pri delenit placerat iudicabit id. Duo ne liber primis, eu vel meis idque. Eum quis homero perfecto at, no vel quot probo. Mundi congue ei vel, ne vitae admodum noluisse ius, aeterno quaestio argumentum ut vel.

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eu vel soleat ancillae assueverit, eos at everti inermis. Cu assueverit ullamcorper nec. Cu admodum sententiae vis, pri delenit placerat iudicabit id. Duo ne liber primis, eu vel meis idque. Eum quis homero perfecto at, no vel quot probo. Mundi congue ei vel, ne vitae admodum noluisse ius, aeterno quaestio argumentum ut vel.His stet corpora nostrum in, eu vel soleat ancillae assueverit, eos at everti inermis. Cu assueverit ullamcorper nec. Cu admodum sententiae vis, pri delenit placerat iudicabit id.

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