Whether you’re new to sales or are an experienced sales professional, you already know that making sales phone calls is no simple task. And yet, it is and will always be an important part of your responsibilities. Clearly, an effective sales call strategy is needed to maximize results, but there are a number of barriers and challenges that often prevent sales professionals from making progress (and unfortunately, many reps tend to give up after the first call or rejection):
- You know calls are important, but you don’t want to risk pushing prospects away
- You can’t find time to dedicate to calling due to other responsibilities or pressures
- You’re consistently getting screened from accessing the primary decision maker
- Prospects take your calls but push out follow-ups (or never take the follow-up call)
- Calling historically hasn’t worked, so you push it off in favor of other methods
These are just a few of the difficulties sales professionals face when it comes to calls. Overcoming these is critical, and for good reason — 51% of leaders still prefer to be contacted over the phone as opposed to other channels (email, social, drop-ins, etc.). This is an important statistic for manufacturers as your prospect decision-makers still prefer traditional methods for being engaged as opposed to younger generations that prefer to find and research solutions themselves before connecting one to one.
Here, we’ll provide insights and recommendations to help you overcome these barriers and get through to more prospects that stand to benefit from your services.
Essentials for an Effective Sales Call Strategy
- Dedicate time to prospecting — Sales professionals today are tasked with more than just sales. You’re also likely dealing with account management responsibilities, quoting and pricing, and other internal work. We know it’s easier said than done, but do your best to find time for calling. Pull back and look at your day. Can you create a more organized schedule that allows for a few hours for calling, or perhaps a few smaller periods where you can reach out to a handful of targets?
- Mix up your avenues and messaging — It’s important to support your sales call strategy with other methods, such as email. For example, send a follow-up email right after leaving a voicemail. Don’t allow your prospects to go weeks or months without hearing from you — persistence is key. Don’t leave the same message twice; change things up, but be sure you have a system for tracking what you’ve said (e.g. notes in your CRM or some other tool). Also be sure to hit multiple numbers — cell, direct, main, etc.
- Target multiple contacts within an organization — Account-based marketing (ABM) is a great way to expand and extend your reach into a prospect company beyond one point of contact. This helps reduce screenings and gives you multiple paths to the primary decision maker. This is important because organizations typically make decisions in groups (e.g. a leadership team, revenue team, etc.). Including multiple people ensures positive results by uncovering what’s important to each contact (e.g. is it price, quality, availability, etc.).
- Qualification is critical — Qualification is key to reducing prospect roadblocks and avoidance. Ask questions to understand the real reason for a prospect’s objection. Are they busy focusing on something else? Do they actually have a need or a pain? You likely won’t get this information in the first call, so be sure you follow up when you say you will. Many sales professionals forget or miss these follow-ups. Use your CRM, a calendar system, or other reminder tool to keep yourself on track.
- Consistently review your messaging based on results — Are you providing value during those conversations? Are you pushing your product/services or are you genuinely looking to help solve a problem? Are the prospect’s common pains/issues worth pursuing change? Additionally, help them understand the price of inaction. Nothing changes if nothing changes. Massage your messaging and approach accordingly to ensure your call produces something.
- Be consistent — When applying all of the above, remember that you need to keep at it in order to see results. Direct calls typically get resolution faster than emails, so don’t be afraid to pick up the phone. Keep working on your sales call strategy, and you’ll see the results you want.
Let Us Handle Prospecting — You Handle Closing
We understand that you and your team are likely tasked with more than you can handle with today’s ongoing labor shortages, production delays, and other difficulties. And yet, the need for new business development remains. That’s where Athena comes in.
Our structured front-end solution combines an integrated inbound and outbound marketing strategy with complete sales coordination and support. Rather than you or your sales team doing the front-end outreach, prospecting, and follow-up, our team takes this work off your plate entirely.
We attract, convert, nurture, and deliver highly qualified opportunities — using proven marketing and sales solutions — to your team, then partner closely with you to move them closer to resolution. If your sales call strategy hasn’t been effective, or if you’re looking to take your existing sales strategy to the next level, our team is ready to work with you.