As regular viewers of The X Factor (and I’m sure some of you won’t admit it) know, one of the most common comments that the judges make with reference to the contestants is regarding their “likeability”. This comes down to the fact that, regardless of whether that particular singer has talent (and a lot of them don’t), their success in the eyes of the public will ultimately be determined by how likeable they are as a person. There have been many terrible acts that have forged a career in music and Television (Jedward anyone?) who, despite having virtually no talent have won favour with the public and made an awful lot of money as a result.
In contrast, there have been many brilliantly talented acts who have been knocked out of the competition early on as their “likeability” with the public was very low.
So, Dan, what on earth has this got to do with Telemarketing you may well be asking yourself?
Well, it’s not too tenuous a link that your “likeability” has a huge amount of control over your potential success levels when you’re making sales and marketing calls, particularly if those calls are to people you’ve never spoken to before. I have previously covered some of the things that annoy receptionists about cold callers in last weeks blog but this also applies to all levels of staff within a business and, once you’ve got past the receptionist it’s essential that you come across as likeable to the prospect, otherwise they’ll have made their mind up way before you even get into the salesy part of the conversation.
Now, whilst there’s no magic formula that can get you liked by everyone – after all most people hate receiving sales and marketing calls – there’s certainly plenty of things to bear in mind that potentially will let the prospect buy into the concept of you before they buy into the concept of your offering.
1 – Be friendly. Friendly gets you far further than being pushy, but do ensure this is genuine friendliness and not forced or false. After all, you don’t know the prospect (yet) so don’t launch in with “how are you” before you’ve even spoken to them in any detail
2 – Be brief. Nobody likes having their time wasted, particularly by sales people waffling on like there’s no tomorrow. Know why you’re calling and get to the point!
3 – Be confident. Umming and arring and stumbling over your words isn’t going to win anyone over. Have confidence in yourself and confidence in what you’re offering. At the same time, watch this confidence doesn’t spill over into arrogance – something which a lot of sales people -particularly the higher earners often suffer from.
4 – Be funny. Yes there are some people whose personalities are frozen in ice who won’t respond to any sort of humour, particularly from a cold caller but, personally I always find that the odd appropriately used humourous remark goes a long way towards thawing that ice. I have a huge raft of very similar jokes I make on a daily basis, obviously nothing offensive (unless the prospect has given me a STRONG signal that their sense of humour is a little on the dark side), one common one is making a small joke about receptionists answering “good afternoon” when it’s still the morning – eg my response would be “wishful thinking eh” or even, if you’re feeling particularly cheeky “yes, I often don’t know what time of day it is either”. Humour unites minds and builds bridges – when used correctly
5 – Be natural. Nobody likes scripted calls, nobody likes receiving automated sales messages so, be as warm and natural as you possibly can. A friendly voice signifies a friendly person. Vary the tone of your voice, adapt to the prospects way of speaking, get into their mindset – what sort of person do they want to be speaking to? and subtly adapt yourself to suit.
In summary, making effective sales and marketing calls is not an easy job and, anyone that thinks it is has either been doing it that long they’ve completely deluded themselves or hasn’t made enough calls to realise how challenging it can be but, if you can be liked you’re on your way to cold calling success.
And if you simply cannot bear to make the calls or feel you’re not making them effectively enough, give me a call (be friendly) and I’ll be very pleased to help you out – I’m on 01384 566 078
Inspired Business Development Ltd
0330 20 50 500
W: Inspired Business Development