Appointment setting is a key competence for most professional sales people. But while it’s critical to telemarketing success, appointment setting is notoriously difficult, and widely feared. Convincing a potential buyer to commit to a date in the diary requires skill. It’s incredibly important a sales team know how to approach calls in the best way for their brand. This means they have to echo the brand and business values whilst maximising their own personality traits. At Blue Donkey we’ve developed techniques to help our teams get the best appointment setting results for our client family. Read on to find out more.
1. Open questions
In previous posts, we’ve talked about the importance of beginning with an open question during telemarketing calls, and appointment setting is no different. Open questions usually begin with the words who what when why or how. They prompt expansive and detailed answers. Asking an open question will help you to connect with the person you’re speaking to. One of the best ways to build a relationship with anyone, whether it’s business or life, is to get them talking. Once you’ve got a two-way conversation going, it will be a lot easier for you to understand their requirements and needs. Only then are you in a position to win their confidence and secure a worthwhile meeting.
2. Cold calling works
Appointment setting calls are often completely cold. Getting decision makers to agree on a date on the first call is hard unless the call is really compelling. Having reliable data, flagship clients, and success stories to hand, will help sales people pepper their calls with reasons to meet. They should work with their marketing department to develop a profiled target list. If the list is robust, and there’s a compelling proposition, potential buyers will be interested enough to engage. The telephone is a great way of connecting buyers in a one-to-one about something which could improve their business. You can’t direct a mailing, email, or any other medium to ask questions and build a discussion around the unique needs of a buyer, telemarketing can do that.
People are always more likely to make appointments with telemarketers that they like. Use your open question to get a conversation going and then ask insightful questions about the company and person you’re speaking with to build rapport. Once you’ve got a dialogue going, you should be able to bring up appointment setting fairly naturally. The ability to build rapport with others is increasingly becoming an important skill in business. In B2B environments, where companies differentiate on their relationship driven approach, the ability to deliver good experience is entwined with rapport-building.
According to Mind Tools It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in or what position you hold – knowing how to build rapport can bring you countless opportunities. After all, when you have a rapport with someone, he or she will usually want to help you to succeed. Some people might argue that this is all a natural gift – either you can build rapport with people or you can’t. However, this is not the whole story. Rapport can develop naturally, but anyone can also nurture and improve rapport, just as they can any other skill.
Appointment setting with key decision makers won’t always be possible until a series of dialogs or actions have taken place. Nurturing the relationship gently over time might be necessary. Getting agreement and consent to speak again at a certain point, or sending follow up information will help. Gently nurturing and developing rapport and trust over time is helpful for building a relationship that endures. The great news is after all the hard work nurturing, these leads are often worth much more when they do convert to a sale.
Find out more about effective and innovative telemarketing techniques and appointment setting services by talking to us today.