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Over the years, I have noticed that these three fundamentals are KEY to sales success. When you aren’t hitting your sales quota, or can’t seem to connect with enough qualified leads, check to see if you are missing one of these pieces.
I often see people master one or two and yet they are still struggling. But get all three in alignment, and your sales prospecting will go MUCH more smoothly and effectively. It’s like finding the missing piece to your sales puzzle!
I remember the three fundamentals by the acronym ‘MAM’ – here they are:
Putting yourself in the right frame of mind is key. Sales prospecting and cold calling are hard jobs – you need to stay optimistic and maintain a positive attitude to succeed.
Approach your calls with this mindset and you will see better results.
Need help with this? Here is a quick post that explains this further. Check out this page for quick tips. And of course, follow me here for updates and advice to keep you empowered and in a positive state of mind!
You need to actually take action to succeed. You need to actively DO the activities that are in your control, to achieve your goals.
For more on this, check out this post. And this one for some activity tracking tips and advice.
Then go PICK UP THAT PHONE!
Have a system, with a playbook, that works – then methodically work the plan.
Our proprietary ‘Conversational Selling’ system is a proven method for making calls that identify qualified leads. We can do this for you or train your team to do it effectively. Either way, the method is your roadmap to success.
We have all the tools YOU need to succeed – give us a call at 908.879.2911 and let us show YOU how.
So how many of these have YOU mastered? Can you now see the missing piece to YOUR sales puzzle? Give us a call if you need help filling in a gap and remember, anything is possible!
Here’s to a strong 2022!
At One of a Kind Sales, we LOVE Cold Calling. And I am a huge fan of Cold Calling Scripts. Here are some tips on how to create an effective Cold Calling script for yourself.
First, any salesperson who says they don’t need a script should reconsider because I am confident that they are leaving money on the table. I stand by that 100%.
The truth is that many people who “wing it” on the phone, sound like they’re winging it. And they are less effective because they don’t have a structured process to follow.
An effective script grounds you, providing you with the words you need to work your way through a conversation and allows you to think ahead while speaking with the prospect.
Here’s an outline of an effective Cold Calling script:
- An Introduction:this should be unique and non-salesy.
- Ask Permission:ask them to give you 30 seconds to explain the purpose of the call.
- Introduce your Company:provide a brief description of what your company does. Focus on value you deliver. According to a study by HubSpot, 96% of buyers say a focus on the value your company can deliver, impacts their purchasing decision.
- Offer three examples of problems you solve:these ‘case studies’ allow people to relate and see how you can help them.
- Ask a Question:something like: “Is any of what I stated compelling and worth a conversation?”
Memorizing this will allow you sound more natural and less ‘salesy’. And it will free you up to address and overcome any objections.
The truth is that you really won’t know what the objections will be until you have this conversation, but you should prepare for those by having scripts for the ones you usually hear. (Check out this post for more on overcoming objections on Cold Calls)
Shut up and Listen!
An effective Cold Calling script will include questions which elicit important information. When they start talking about their pain points, your role is to listen, empathize and allow them to express their issues in detail.
The key is to actively listen and probe to keep them talking about their problems.
Set an Appointment or Move On?
The information you gather will help you determine whether or not you can fix their problem. If you can, great! Go ahead and set an appointment.
If not, no problem. Thank them for their time and ask them if they know of anyone else who might need your services. Ask them to keep you in mind if their situation changes or if they learn of anyone who might be a good fit.
Then pick up the phone and dial your next number!
Consistency Is Key
Developing scripts for everyone on the team ensures consistent messaging and branding.
The Conversational Selling Script™ , like the one outlined here, is for when you speak with a decision-maker. You will also need to develop voicemail scripts and email templates that match the voicemail scripts.
How to Create an Effective Cold Calling Script
Here is the process I recommend for developing scripts.
- Develop five case studies on past clients. Think about what their issue was– that’s the title of the case study. Talk about what their problem was, and how you helped them resolve it.
- Each case study should cover a different problem that your prospects may also have. Those case studies become the ‘meat’ of your script.
- Extract the “pain” from those case studies and put it into your script.
- Adapt the right case study to the prospect you are calling.
You don’t have to know everything about that client. You don’t have to be an expert. You’ve got your script. You’ve got your pain points. Go!
Don’t go into sell mode on a call when your goal is just to have a CONVERSATION and, if they are a good fit, to set an appointment.
That’s it, never sell. You are there to uncover information. And this information then becomes the ‘meat’ of your appointment conversation.
Rinse and Repeat
Once you have an effective Cold Calling script, it should be reviewed and updated periodically but it should serve you well for hundreds of calls.
And yes, there is an art to creating an effective Cold Calling script. It isn’t easy and can take years of practice. If you don’t want to wait years to reap the benefits of an effective Cold Calling script and need one NOW, call us – we can set you and your team up with the scripts YOU need to set appointments that close more deals. Call us today at 908-879-2911 to learn more and to get started setting more, and more qualified, appointments.
This is an excerpt from a chapter of my book, “The Inside Sales Solution“. Click here to buy a copy from Amazon or here to download a FREE digital copy.
I recently read something that suggested “…the ideal sales training program should accompany a new rep through his or her first months on the job, lasting at least 90 days and as long as a year or more.”(1)
Yes, this is a good start but in our extensive experience, we have found that ONGOING sales training is the most effective way to:
- Give your team the competitive edge
- Consistently achieve sales quotas
- Retain valuable employees
- Drive more sales!
According to the American Marketing Association, “organizations spend an average of $2,236 per salesperson on sales training every year. By one account, U.S. companies alone spend $15 billion each year training sales employees.”
But not all sales training is created equal. Nor is it all effective!
Effective Sales Training
At One of a Kind Sales, we train salespeople in our proprietary ‘Conversational Selling’ technique. Our comprehensive, ongoing training program:
- Introduces, explains and models effective selling tactics and techniques
- Provides a peer group experience which helps and supports individuals as needed while raising the skill and success level of the entire team
- Establishes metrics and creates a system which allows you to monitor progress, identify set-backs and track results
We are not all natural-born salespeople. Learning new skills and techniques benefits everyone.
When I first got into sales, I was horrified of failing. I had some training but really hungered for more. I invested in myself, taking classes and attending programs. I guess you can say that I’ve become a lifelong student of the sales process.
This has built my confidence and driven successful outcomes.
Create a Culture of ‘Stickiness’
Employers who invest in their people see lower rates of employee turnover – a huge concern in this era of the ‘great resignation’.
Employees not only stay, but they produce more. And when they do hit obstacles and challenges, we provide the support and guidance needed to navigate them and move forward, rather than burn out and leave.
Ongoing sales training for your existing employees is much more cost effective than having to constantly on-board new people, only to have them repeat the ‘burn out and leave’ cycle.
Our One of a Kind Sales System is a time proven process that WORKS. We teach you the steps to follow, the words to say, when and how to say them and how to follow-up. Then we work with you to perfect your implementation and delivery.
The results include:
- Establishing and reinforcing a positive brand image for your company
- Setting you and your team up as industry leaders
- More closed sales and less money left on the table
I Practice what I Preach
As I said, I am a lifelong learner. I am in skills training once a week and my team is trained weekly. I am also committed to Cold Calling, making it a recurring task on my weekly schedule despite my seniority and the fact that I have a team that does this. Doing this regularly keeps me sharp, aware of the current issues and allows me to truly empathize with the challenges my teams face.
A Bonus Win
Sales, at its most essential level, is about COMMUNICATION. Sales training is about teaching people how to communicate more effectively.
As an added bonus, these skills carry over into all aspects of your life. Your significant other, family and friends will thank you!
A study from 2019 determined that “…69 percent of sales organizations cited salesperson training as the top service offering provided by companies to enable their sales organization’s success.” (2)
Invest in yourself and your team. Give us a call today at 908-879-2911 to learn more about our Ongoing Sales Training programs and how they can help YOU!
At One of a Kind Sales, we call our proprietary approach to Cold Calling ‘Conversational Selling’.
We approach each call as a conversation and an opportunity to discover two things:
1. Are we speaking with a decision maker?
2. Are they experiencing problems now, or in the future, that we can solve?
We do that, in conversation, by asking a lot of important and pointed questions.
Take for example, the classic sales exercise where you are asked ‘sell me a pen’.
Most people launch into ‘sell’ mode, listing all the features and benefits of owning this particular pen.
With Conversational Selling, we deliberately take a different path. We need to know what is motivating the person’s need for a pen before we know if this is the best pen for them.
Rather than going directly for a sale, we pause and spend time asking important questions to determine if this pen is the best fit for them, or if another might be better.
This approach does a couple of things. First, it earns you the trust of the prospect. They can see that you are genuinely curious to learn about THEM and THEIR needs, as opposed to just selling YOUR product.
Qualify the Prospect
It also provides you with the opportunity to decide if this buyer is a good fit for you!
This approach also forces you to SLOW DOWN.
Many salespeople are guilty of approaching each prospect with an attitude of ‘ let’s close this deal and move onto the next’.
When you do that, you often miss important details and information which is key to determining how to best sell this prospect.
You need to learn how THIS prospect wants to buy. Listening and drawing information out through questioning provides you with this info.
When you approach a sales call as a conversation you create equal stature that allows you to determine if this prospect is a good fit. And to determine whether you can solve their problem.
This takes the pressure off of the salesperson AND the prospect.
A Proven Track Record
We have been practicing this method for over 29 years, refining our approach, and messaging as needed. Not only has it been successful for us and our clients, but it has also worked well for the salespeople that we have trained.
In addition to making you a better salesperson, our Conversational Selling training will benefit you across all areas of your professional and even your personal life by helping you become a better LISTENER.
Be Deliberately Different
At the end of the day, Conversational Selling will set you apart – people remember people who are different.
As you know, I love this quote from Coco Chanel who famously said, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.”
Being deliberately different, by design, will improve your sales, fill your pipeline and relive you and the prospect of the pressure of a hard sell.
Invest in Yourself
Sales training benefits individual salespeople and companies as a whole, by sharpening their skills, increasing the knowledge base, keeping the company competitive and growing revenue.
Ongoing sales training should be a part of every employee’s weekly schedule, at every level. Yes, even management! This keeps people involved, up to date on the industry best practices and engaged with their team and their prospects.
If you need help shifting YOUR mindset from selling features and benefits to Conversational Selling, give us a call. Our ‘Call Center in a Box‘ and ‘Close the Deal‘ programs provide the ongoing sales training you and your team needs to succeed!
I have noticed that many salespeople are quick to spend an exorbitant amount of time and money on live events, claiming that they offer networking opportunities that they cannot afford to miss. That time and money would be better spent on Cold Calling. Cold Calling IS networking!
When done correctly, Cold Calling provides all the benefits of networking at a much lower cost and in a shorter time frame.
Cold Calling vs Networking
Here are some of the most important reasons to network professionally:
- To build and nurture your professional network
- To stay visible and top of mind with your community
- To stay on top of industry news and advancements
- To help others and build good will
Cold Calling provides the opportunity to do all of these, and more!
- Cold Calling helps build and nurture your professional network. When making Cold Calls, you are introduced to new people and have the opportunity to touch base with older contacts. And since you are speaking with them, one on one over the phone, instead of across a table with numerous others – some of whom may be competitors – I would argue that the conversations you have during a Cold Call are more advantageous.
But the key word there is ‘CONVERSATIONS’ – when done correctly, a Cold Call is a conversation!
- Cold Calling helps you stay visible and top of mind with your community. Again, when Cold Calling, you are ‘touching’ the prospect – even if it is only to leave a voicemail. These ‘touches’ help establish a sense of trust and by maintaining a regular delivery cadence, you will stay top of mind.
- Cold Calling helps you stay on top of industry news and advancements. While you may not be gaining information from your prospects, a good salesperson will be sure to stay on top of industry news in order to be able to provide that on calls if needed. Cold Calling incentivizes salespeople to be in the know!
- Cold Calls provide opportunities to help others and build good will. A good salesperson will be listening, on a Cold Call, for problems they can solve. If they cannot provide an appropriate solution, they will offer a referral. This not only helps the prospect but serves to build good will.
How much time should you spend networking?
According to Dr. Ivan Misner, the founder of BNI (Business Network International, which claims to be the largest business networking organization in the world) people should spend 8 – 10 hours per week networking. To achieve this by attending networking events, you need to then add the commute time, factor in the costs of the event and the lousy coffee and hope that your target audience will be there.
Yes, attending some live networking events can be helpful but I say, cut to the chase! Pick up the phone and make a call. And start thinking of your Cold Calling time as ‘networking’ – making and building new connections. I bet this shift in mindset will you’re your calls become more conversational and productive. Let me know how it goes!
Do you need help shifting your mindset out of ‘selling’ mode and into ‘conversation’ mode? Check out our Call Center in a Box program where we train you and your team in our time-proven Conversational Selling technique. OUR SALES TRAINING gets YOUR people delivering real results!