In this article, we explore the ins and outs of telemarketing to help you understand the basics, where it is most efficient and avoid the pitfalls using simple examples.
6 Ways to recover from bad calls
Have you experienced this?
You’ve prepared yourself to call your golden prospect. You don’t have a choice as this call must be a success.
You researched their business and know they need your product. So you’re pretty sure it will be an easy catch.
After the prospect answers the phone, he listens to your pitch but immediately cuts you off with the heart-wrenching words you’re familiar with, “I’m not interested.”
You try to put up a tough fight, but the prospect is adamant. Then, “click,” He’s gone.
How do you get up from there?
You‘ve lost a six-figure chance. It could have given you a standing ovation in your next meeting with your bosses.
And most importantly, a hefty commission to your bank account.
If you’ve had such a harrowing experience, here are six tips on how you can jump back into action.
1. Give your Mind a Break
That was a rough ride. You need to rest a bit and bring yourself together.
The first thing to do is get some distance from your working desk. Go for a walk or take coffee in the nearby coffee shop.
By moving away from your workstation, you’re sending a signal to your brain to reset.
If you have other prospects and don’t have time to take a stroll, spend a few minutes doing something unrelated to sales calls.
You can peep into Facebook for a minute or watch a funny video on YouTube. The goal of this is to take your mind off the experience you’ve just had.
It brings back your creative juices before jumping on the next cold call. However, don’t overdo it. You might end up procrastinating on your work.
2. Figure Out What Went Wrong
Thinking about past mistakes is not good for your mental health. But when you come to sales or any other professional field, that’s quite different.
You’re not thinking about what went wrong to blame yourself. You’re doing it to identify the problems so that you don’t repeat the same mistake.
In short, you’re trying to learn something new from the situation.
First, listen to a recording of your call. Jot down what you think you should’ve said and what you shouldn’t.
Think of a better approach you think you could have done to bring the prospect back on track. You’ll get new ideas as you prepare for the next call.
While doing this, avoid getting too personal or angry at the prospect. That’s why all salespeople need to be resilient.
3. Ask Yourself These Questions
Now that you’ve understood what went wrong, ask yourself these questions. They’re meant to bring back your thoughts to a positive mood.
How can I deal with such a prospect next time?
You’ll probably come across another rejection. That’s a part of cold calling.
So you have to figure out how you’ll handle it. If your emotions were high and led to the loss of the prospect, find out how you’ll keep yourself controlled next time.
Did I have enough information about the prospect?
Most sales go wrong because of one reason. Sales reps use generic templates like the one below to call prospects.
“Hello Ms XYZ. This is so and so from company Y. We offer IT solutions to help streamline delivery processes in your industry. Would you like to hear more about it?"
If you use similar templates, then your message is “jaw-dropping bad.” Prospects would love it if you could do a little research about them.
Get to know who you are talking to, their position in the company, and most importantly, if they need your product.
Did you call at the right time?
It’s not like the prospect knew you’d call.
As a type of outbound marketing, your call disrupts your prospects. That’s why you need to call at the time when they’re most likely to answer.
For example, if you think the prospect has morning meetings, you can call in the afternoon. But make sure it’s between working hours.
4. Call the Prospect Later
If by any chance, the prospect didn’t recognize you, you can still keep them on your database for the future.
Wait for some more days before calling again. But get your house in order this time to avoid the same outcome.
Occasionally, the prospect will have some dim memory about your last call. But don’t hang up the phone right away in case they do.
Instead, do these three things:
- Remain calm and composed.
- Don’t worry if they recognize you. Some time has passed and you probably must have been working on your cold calling skills. Who knows, they might be interested this time if you nail it.
- Finish the call by asking for a one-on-one meeting.
5. Get Over The Fear of Cold-Calling
For new salespeople, getting a harsh rejection can break them down. They wouldn’t want to make a call again.
48% of B2B salespeople are afraid of making cold calls. And this fear is fuelled if they have a rough experience.
You don’t want this to happen to you. It may cause personal distress and potentially lead to thousands of dollars in lost revenue. Here’s what you can do.
Prepare adequately for your next call
Most cold calls go wrong because of improper preparation.
So this is a crucial step you shouldn’t miss. Your aim is to prepare for possible scenarios and outcomes of your cold call.
Delve deeper into your prospect. Get to know their problems and if your product/service will come in handy. Again, prepare yourself mentally.
You’ll probably get other objections. But don’t let it weigh you down every time it happens. You don’t want to come back reading this post over and over again.
Have a robust sales script
While cold calling should be a conversation, you must have guidelines that show you what to tackle when talking with the prospect.
A good sales script lessens the awkwardness on the phone and helps you overcome anxiety by leading you in the right direction.
The sales script should have these elements:
- Introduction and rapport building
- Key message
- Pre-qualifying questions
- Offers that build value for the prospect.
Breath and take pauses on your call
Your prospect will quickly know that you’re afraid when he hears you breathing loudly.
Unfortunately, most of them aren’t warm enough to encourage you. They’re busy. They probably receive tens of calls from other salespeople who they don’t listen to.
If you don’t take time to think about each word you’re saying carefully, you’ll soon start sounding like a robot. You’ll find yourself repeating the same word in the script, which is a big red flag to prospects.
Try to slow down. Take a deep breath to overcome the call anxiety. Ask your question, take a pause. Keenly listen to their answers. Easy as that.
Be creative in your calls
You’re not tied to what everyone does out there. Sometimes being unique is what will set you free from the cold-calling ghosts.
Being creative is an untraditional way that will get you the best results. For example, you can listen to your favourite songs to lighten your mood or listen to speeches of great orators like Martin Luther King.
Or even better, you can practice the script with a colleague or in front of a mirror.
Get Coaching on Sales Calls
You only get better at something when an expert holds your hand.
You’ll save yourself many years of learning and making mistakes. In most cases, this is dependent on your company. It’s upon them to bring trainers to teach their sales teams on sales best practices.
But if that doesn’t happen, take action into your own hands. Cold calling is a personal skill that will help you in another company or yours.
You can go for seminars, attend webinars, or even hire an expert coach who’s ready to hold your hand till you get better at it.
If you don’t have the budget, record your sales calls and ask your peers for feedback. Myphoner allows you to record a call and retain it for up to 90 days, depending on the plan you’ve chosen. Take advantage of that.
You can even do this on live calls. Simply call someone amid a call going downwards.
Some tools, such as Myphoner, can even allow someone else to listen to your call and even whisper how to handle the situation.
Getting rejected is a part of life.
But salespeople really get what this means since it’s an everyday thing. If cold calling would be easy, then everyone would want to do it.
So if a cold call has gone sour, don’t let it get into you. Or you shouldn’t use it as a weapon to bring down your team. Instead, transform that rejection into affection.
This will become an opportunity to become a better salesperson.
If you think that hiring a sales representative is as easy as cooking a batch of chocolate chip cookies, you are making a mistake that may be very costly. Learn why.