3 Things You Should Stop Saying in Sales

I have listened to thousands of sales calls over the years, and I spend the majority of my coaching and training hours listening to sales calls even today. And I still hear the same mistakes….

Here are three things NOT to say if you want to become more effective at opening and closing more sales:

#1: When speaking with a gatekeeper and they ask if they can tell the prospect who is calling, don’t:

  • Just say your name (“John,” or “John Davis”)—and then nothing else…
  • Say your name and company name
  • Say your name and company name and then start pitching the gatekeeper…

Instead, respond with: “Absolutely! Please tell prospect’s first name, that John Davis is holding, please.”

#2: If you’re speaking with a client and you’re asking if they need to order anything, don’t say:

  • I’m just calling to see if you need anything today?

Instead, change the question to make it assumptive. Ask: “While I have you on the phone, what’s on your white board that you’ll be needing soon?”

You can adjust this to fit your product or service, but always change “Is there anything” to “What are you looking for…”

#3: When you are scheduling an appointment to follow up, don’t use the generic:

  • I’ll call you in a month to follow up…

Instead, you should ask the prospect when a good time to follow up is. AND, make this ask assumptive. Try: “When would you like me to check back in with you?”

By asking the prospect when you should follow up, you’ll be able to gauge their urgency and assess their buying rhythms. If they tell you 6 months, then suggest you’ll check in with them in 3, just in case something changes.

Little tweaks like this can make a huge difference in your overall sales results. Remember: practice doesn’t make perfect; it just makes permanent.

Only practice of perfection makes perfect.


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

Inbound Leads: Slam Dunks or Looky-loos?

What is a sales person’s dream? An inbound lead.

Someone has found your company, responded online or sent an email, and wants to know more about how you can help them.

A slam dunk deal, right?

Not so fast…

If you’ve been fielding inbound leads for a while, then you’ve probably noticed something: Not all inbound leads buy.

But how can this be? Didn’t the prospect reach out to me? Shouldn’t he/she be a deal?

Many sales reps today still make the mistake of taking “implied interest” in your company or service, to mean someone is interested, qualified, and ready to buy.

The way to capture a deal in this situation—if there is one—is to treat an inbound lead like any other: you need to qualify them.

Here are a few questions that will help you separate the slam dunks from the looky-loos:

“Thanks for reaching out to us today. Tell me, what motivated you to contact us?”

And

“I’m sure you’re looking at other companies, just out of curiosity, what is most important when choosing a company for this?”

And

“Who, besides yourself, is involved in making this decision?”

And

“After you’ve found the company that you think is best for you, what is your timeline for purchasing this?”

The next time you get an inbound lead, make sure and ask the questions above. It will help you decide who to spend your time with, versus who to let go of. And knowing that will save you a lot of aggravation later on.


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

Simple Habit to Improve Sales Today

Someone once said, “First we form habits, and then they form us.”

And in sales, this is especially true.

Here’s a quick example from a new client I’m working with now:

At the end of speaking with current accounts, the habit of the sales team is to ask: “If you need anything, please give me a call…”

Developing a better habit during this part of the call will greatly increase your sales. Here is what the reps should be saying in this situation:

“While I have you on the phone, what do you have coming up that you’d like me to check on for you?”

OR

“While we’re on the phone, what do you think you’ll be needing in the next couple of weeks?”

OR

“What are some of the things you order frequently that you’d like me to keep an eye out for?”

The difference here is that asking an account for a sale is the best way of getting a possible sale today.

While some clients might not need anything right then, some will! And how sweet will it be to get an instant order today, rather than calling back a month from now to find out they just ordered from someone else?

Habits.

When you break down your sales calls and begin looking for the habits that make up your pitch, ask yourself: What can you change to become more effective?

Chances are, there are many techniques that will have a huge impact on your sales results. Why not start with this one habit today?


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

“How to Avoid: ‘Will He Know What This Call is About?’”

How many times have you been stopped by the gatekeeper asking you:

“Will he/she know what this call is about?”

OR

“Have you spoken to him/her before?”

OR

“Is he/she expecting your call?”

Frustrating, isn’t it?

In all likelihood, you yourself are creating this objection by the way you’re opening your dialogue with the gatekeeper.

The number one mistake inside sales teams make when asking to speak with someone is not using a directive statement afterward. In other words, just asking to speak to someone and then not saying anything else.

The number two mistake is not giving your company name, thereby forcing the gatekeeper to do her/his job and ask you for it.

Here’s what not to do:

Gatekeeper: “Johnson company, may I help you?”

Sales Rep: “Can I talk to {prospect’s name}?”

OR worse:

Sales Rep: “Is {prospect’s name} available?”

The problem is that you didn’t use the magic word: “please.”

Using “please” instructs the gatekeeper to put you through, and, at the very least, encourages them to be polite to you. Here’s how it usually goes:

Gatekeeper: “Johnson company, may I help you?”

Sales Rep: “Hi, can I speak with {prospect’s name} please?”

Gatekeeper will now ask: “Can I tell him who is calling, please?”

Note here that the gatekeeper will use “please” right back to you—this as a good sign! The gatekeeper is now taking your lead and being polite to you!The

You reply exactly with:

“Absolutely! Please tell him/her {your first and last name} with {your company name} is holding please.

That last part: “is holding please” is the directive part that both instructs the gatekeeper to put you through, and signals the end of your transaction with them.

This technique works 80%+ of the time.

So, if you’re getting any of the previous screening questions, you can end that today by learning and using a better approach.

Try it for a week and smile as you get put through to more decisions makers!


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

Happy With Who We’re Using

This blog post is for those of you who haven’t purchased and read any of my book of scripts yet (what are you thinking? 🙂 )

For those of you who are prospecting, this objection, “We’re happy with who we’re using,” is something you most likely encounter often.

The question is: what do you say to it?

This objection—like all others—is a perfect one to script an effective response to, and here is one of my favorites:

Objection: “We’re happy with who we’re using” (Or any variation like, “We’re all set”):

Response: “That’s perfectly OK; I didn’t expect you to be in the market today. In fact, because you already have someone, this is the perfect time to compare prices and services with other vendors. That way, when you do have a need to look elsewhere, you’ll have a solid option already vetted.

“Let me ask you this….”

And then use a qualifying question regarding what they use, how often they order, etc.

Bonus response:

“No worries, I’m not going to sell you anything today. Instead, I simply want to give you some information so if things change—and let’s face it, they change all the time—you’ll at least know who to reach out to.

“Let me ask you this….”

Again, use a qualifying question regarding what they use, how often they order, etc.

If you would like eight other proven response, visit here.

Remember: throughout your sales process, you get the same seven to ten objections, stalls, and put-offs over and over again.

Want to be a top producer? Then stop making up an answer to them, and “ace” them by being prepared with proven scripts.


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

One Error to Correct on Your Prospecting Scripts

Congrats to those companies & individuals who sent in their prospecting scripts for review. I received many scripts and went ahead and reviewed ten (instead of just the three).

One error I kept seeing was reps’ mishandling asking for the right person when they didn’t know the right contact’s name.

Usually, they asked it this way:

Gatekeeper: “Thank you for calling the Johnson company.”

Rep: “I’m looking for the person who handles your XYZ. Do you know who I should speak to?”

The problem with this is you’re A) Identifying yourself as a sales rep, and B) You’re now inviting the gatekeeper to qualify you out.

Here is a better way:

Gatekeeper: “Thank you for calling the Johnson company.”

Rep: “Hi, I need a little bit of help please…”

[It’s crucial that you WAIT for them to respond and offer that help!]

Gatekeeper: “What can I help you with?”

Rep: “Thanks. Who would be the best person to speak with regarding XYZ?”

This approach uses an assumptive question, and it gives direction. This is your best approach.

If the gatekeeper comes back and asks:

“Can I tell him who is calling?”

You simply respond with:

“Absolutely. Please tell him [Your Name] with [Your company] is holding please.”

That’s it! This approach will get you through to the right contact over 80% of the time.

Try it this week and see for yourself!

BTW: If you or your team needs other proven techniques to connect with and sell more decision makers, consider my On-Demand Training.

Instant access = Instant results! See it here.


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

One Question to Learn Buying Motive

How is your first quarter turning out so far?

Closing lots of business and exceeding your quota? Or are you struggling to catch up and hoping for a strong March?

If you or your team is struggling, a cause might be a fundamental flaw that many sales teams suffer from: failure to understand—and pitch to—a prospect’s unique buying motive.

Let’s review the sales process briefly:

  1. Recognizing all buyers of products and services have specific needs (buying motives) they are looking to fulfill.
  2. Not everyone’s buying motives are the same. The best way to sell someone is to fully understand what their buying motives are and then to:
  3. Pitch to each buyer’s specific needs.
  4. Then, as you do, you use carefully placed tie-downs and trial closes to build a yes momentum that leads to the close.

That’s the essential process of sales. Of course, there are nuances and specific techniques to master the above steps at a high level, and that’s why you train…

But, let me tell you what I have found to be the major problem for teams and individual sales reps who are not making their numbers:

They never understand exactly what each prospect’s unique buying motive is, and so they just keep pitching, hoping that what they say will match up somehow with what a prospect wants to hear.

Two problems with this approach:

  1. Many prospects aren’t buying regardless, and so if you just keep pitching without understanding their buying motive—or worse, haven’t identified that this prospect doesn’t have a buying motive you can fulfill—then you’re wasting everyone’s time.
  2. If you have failed to understand exactly what a specific prospect’s buying motive is, then you won’t be able to speak directly to it, build the appropriate amount of value, and you’ll miss step 5 above and risk talking past the close—and yourself out of a deal.

How would you like one magic question that will reveal to you each prospect’s buying motive? Here it is:

“{first name}, let me ask you: what specifically are you hoping a (product or service) like ours will do for you at this time?”

That’s it! Now, listen carefully to the answer, and ask yourself honestly: Can your product or service give them exactly what they are looking for? If so, pitch directly to it. Use tie-downs to see if you’re getting closer to making a sale. Shift to trial closes mid-way through your close. And if you’re getting buy in, then assume the close!

This one question, combined with the 4-step process above, will elevate your close ratio and help your entire team make their quota.

Try it today!


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

3 Keys to Successfully Dealing with Influencers

Influencers are key to both getting through to decision makers, and to eventually making a sale. The question is: How do you properly qualify them and get them to influence the sale in your favor?

There are three keys to successfully dealing with influencers, and the better you understand and use them, the more success you’ll have.

They are:

Key Number One: Understand exactly how much influence the influencer has.

This may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised at how many sales reps buy into the, “Well I need to present this to…” and don’t go beyond that to qualify the influencer’s role.

To avoid that, always both assume the influencer has a voice in the decision, and then qualify her/him for that.

Use:

“And how much influence do you have in the final say on this?”

OR

“What role do you play in the final decision?”

Learning how much influence they have is crucial to the overall sales process.

Key Number Two: Make sure your influencer is sold on what you’re offering.

If it’s true that the influencer has to show this or present this to the decision maker, then they had better be sold on it themselves, right?

Use:

“Do you personally think this is something that would work for your company?”

OR

“If the (committee, boss, etc.) asked you what you think, what would you say?”

AND/OR

“And from what you’ve seen, is this something you’d recommend to the (decision maker)?”

Key Number Three: Attempt a trial close.

If they buy in to your question that they are going to recommend it, then ask:

“And do they usually go with your recommendation?”

If you get buy in here, then you can either:

  1. Set up a meeting to pitch the decision maker.
  2. Set a follow up call after they have pitched the decision maker.

Either way, learning how to do a better job at dealing with the influencer will go a long way to controlling the sale, and making more of them!


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

Five Scripts You Need to Know by Heart

In my book, Power Phone Scripts, I talk about the secret of sales.

Yes, there is an actual secret to successful sales, and by following it you not only will overcome failure and frustration, but you’ll make more money, so much more easily, that sales will actually become fun.

Think of that.

And the secret is to be prepared for the recurring selling situations, blow offs, objections, and situations you get 80 to 90% of the time.

All top producers know automatically how to respond to objections like:

“I need to think about it.”

“I already have a supplier for that.”

“We’re not interested.”

And many more.

Here is a quick “cheat sheet” of five scripts/responses you need to print out, study, memorize, and use when you get in the following situations:

“I need to think about it.”

Response:

“That’s perfectly fine—I like to think about things too, of course. Quick question for you if you don’t mind: Are you going to be thinking about the budget for this, or whether or not to even do it?”

“I already have a supplier for that.”

Response:

“Of course you do, and that’s great. I’m not looking to replace them just yet; instead, I just want you to have other options in case things change and you have to start looking elsewhere. Let me ask you…”

Go back to your qualifying questions here and try to engage them.

“We’re not interested.”

Response:

“No worries—you’re still entitled to this information in case something changes for you in the future. Let me ask you: how much (of your product or service) do you currently use on a monthly basis?”

Two things here: #1) You’re trying to engage them and see if they’ll answer your question, and #2) You’re qualifying them for your product or service as well.

“I just don’t think this is for us.”

Response:

“You know, I love to learn. Do you mind if I ask why not?”

And number five may be familiar to my regular readers, but even for you, I have to ask: How often are you using it?

For any objection, stall, or comment you get and don’t know how to respond to, ask this:

“Oh?”

And then hit your mute button and let your prospect tell you how to sell them.

Again, print these out, memorize them, and use them when you get any of the above recurring objections.

If you’d like over 500 more word-for-word scripts, then invest a few bucks in yourself and get a copy of my book: Power Phone Scripts.

Being prepared is the fastest way to double and even triple your sales.


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated

Ghosted? Here’s what to do…

Ghosted—just the sound of this is chilling.

But when you’ve done a presentation and then don’t hear back from a prospect, it can often mean the kiss of death.

What to do?

Here are three things I do to avoid being ghosted:

#1: Because prospects are pitched all the time, and because the majority of them are not going to be a buyer (at this time) for my services, a way I get them to reach back out to me is by offering them a way out.

That’s right. While it seems counter intuitive, I’d rather know up front if I’m wasting my time or if this is a real prospect.

So, I always include in my communications (voicemail, email, text) the following “out”:

“{first name}, so I know how to follow up appropriately, please let me know if this is something that isn’t of interest to you right now, or when would be a good time for us to discuss this further.”

That’s it.

And guess what? By including this sentence my communications, I not only get more responses, but I remove the “beg” in my pitch/follow up. Nobody likes hearing from a salesperson who has “commission breath” as a manager once told me. And this method not only allows prospects to disqualify themselves, but it also gets those interested buyers to respond back to me with a time to reach them.

#2: Make more calls without leaving a message. Speaking about prospects hiding behind emails, etc., sales reps hide behind them, too. They send email after email or leave a couple of voice mails and then give up.

I take the opposite approach: I call.

Relentlessly.

For weeks.

And I don’t leave a message.

Oh sure, I send emails also, and I leave voicemails once in a while, but in between, I’ll call five to seven times a week—at different times, different days—and hang up if I don’t reach someone.

This kind of persistence has paid off (and still pays off) Big Time. So be relentless—remember: “The harder you work, the luckier you’ll get.”

#3: Send a card—or 12. In my book, Power Phone Scripts, I’ve detailed the success I’ve had using a greeting card campaign to send a personalized card every month for year. I’ve made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing this.

Visit this link to try this service for free, and then do what other sales reps are too lazy to do: Send a card, every month, and you’ll reach the buyers you’re looking for.

And don’t forget: The beautiful thing about this system is you create the cards and then forget about them! All you have to do is add a name and address and press a button. Then your cards go out automatically without any other effort on your part!

Remember: You want to be in front of your prospects when priorities change, and when they need your product or service. Sending a card and being in front of them each month will ensure they think of YOU first…

So, there you have it. Three sure fire ways of avoiding being ghosted. Follow them and watch your contacts—and your sales—go through the roof!


Need More Proven Responses to the Selling Situations You Face Every Day?


ON DEMAND SALES TRAINING THAT GETS RESULTS!

If your team is struggling with call reluctance and is tired of the endless rejection they face, then get instant access to our On Demand training today. We provide the exact talk tracks, templates, and proven tools your team will be motivated to apply, all structured around an award winning comprehensive inside sales approach that gives your team the confidence to succeed in every selling situation they face today.

Unlimited License: One to 100 reps can attend for one low price!

Perfect for reps dealing with the following issues:

  • Reps struggling with call reluctance
  • Getting screened out by the gatekeeper
  • Overcoming blow off objections like, “Just email me something”
  • Identifying decision makers
  • Qualifying prospects
  • Setting call back appointments that stick
  • Giving successful presentations and dealing with objections
  • Staying motivated