Should sales people use a script?
Sales people hate it, Sales Managers love it. Sales people think that their job has become monotonous and they are reading from a script and that does not give them flexibility. Sales Managers think that sales people are not that effective because the sound bytes for every call changes and hence ends up in the prospect losing interest.
Let us examine the advantages of a scripted call. Every one of us should sound contextual with the buyers within the shortest possible time to make sure that the buyer does not hang up the phone on us.
How do we do it??
Work on the script as a team, define your buyer persona and draft out what you think would sound well and execute the pitch. The idea of the scripted call is not to see it and read it from a page like a machine but to make sure that the points are not missed out. Minor modifications on the words can be made to suit individual styles and personalities but there must be an assurance that no points in that script will be missed.
Look at it from another perspective. When the buyer asks you a question or objects to a point of yours in a long meeting, there are three things that you can do
Listen, Think and Answer. The sequence works extremely well in a half an hour or a one hour meeting when you are given quite a bit of time to think and to respond. However, in a cold calling situation, this luxury is not possible because if you would take even two seconds to think and respond or if you do not give a convincing response, you will lose the buyer.
You will also not know the mood or the situation that the buyer is in and hence saying something that comes to the mind at that point in time may not necessarily get you the desired outcome – A subsequent meeting.
So, the pitch and the quick blocking and tackling of objections need to be spontaneous and this will happen only if you would say what the buyer would like to listen and not what you would like to speak.
This, I guess, should strengthen the case for using a script
Of Course, There is no guarantee that the first version will be perfect. This logical pitch needs to be validated by your buyers. The Sales script can be bettered and can be perfected real fast only if all of your team members use the same script and evolve a feedback mechanism once in one or two weeks to find out what worked and what did not work. You can then make the changes to get to a near perfect cold calling pitch .The initial sets of questions to ask in a cold call also need to be arrived at and practiced till this becomes perfect. This way, we can almost always create a great impression in the buyers mind and can move towards the next step in the sales process – Subsequent meeting.
I am not saying that you can convert all the cold calls but you can maximize the conversion ratio and most importantly, not make some genuine prospect hang up the phone because you feel like saying whatever comes to your mind.
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