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Saturday, 4 January 2014

5 Tips for Generating Appointments on the Telephone

Still to this day one of the best ways to generate leads is by cold calling. A lot of people will say it's a waste of time and they're sort of right. Let me explain, most people don't know how to book appointments on the telephone and have never been trained. Make no mistakes it is a skill. Hence why they feel it's a waste of time.

With so much that can be covered on appointment setting I'll keep it simple and share with you 5 tips to increase your chances.

1. Attitude - You have to be prepared to hit the phones and hit a high volume of calls. Get your mind ready for it by setting a target. Set a target for yourself to make the first 25 calls and aim for one or two decision makers to talk to from that. Remember on each call you should get one of these three things...progress, kill or book! Progress would be finding out vital information from gatekeepers or whom ever you speak with that progresses the call. You want to make sure it's a company that you can help if not then kill it. Get it off your list. Remember killing something from your list is progress too. Or book a meeting!

2. Tonality - You MUST sound important and professional. The gatekeeper has a job to do of filtering out calls he or she feels is a waste of time. Don't take this to heart. Play the game. Use deep powerful tonality and say thank you with the same deep powerful tonality at the end. Here's an example:

"Hello XYZ company how can I help?"
"Hi it's Stephen Tierney calling back for Dave Jones please thank you."

If you've tried calling before then use the 'calling back' routine because it sounds more important to the gatekeeper. It's almost as if you're returning their call.

So remember deep powerful tonality creates more respect. At all costs do not sound like a call centre operative or they will drop you like a bad habit!

3. No wasted calls - If you can't get through to the decision maker or they're in a meeting make sure you gather information that will support and help you on the next call. And get a time when the meeting is finished. Be relentless because there is no wasted calls.

4. Prepare your answers - Gatekeepers pretty much work in similar ways and say similar things so have your answers prepared for the most popular questions. Here are two and how to combat them:

"What's it regarding?"
Do not go into a huge spiel about your products or services keep it short, sharp and a little greyish at this point because your objective is just to get past the gatekeeper.
"It's regarding the correspondence we've had so if you could put me through please that would be great thank you." The correspondence could be an email you've sent and you're also finishing the sentence with a command and a please and thank you. This makes it a lot more difficult for the gatekeeper to say no.

"Is he expecting your call?"
"Not today, I was suppose to call him last week so if you could put me through please that would be great thank you."
He may have been on your list to call last week but you never got round to it however the gatekeeper thinks he was expecting your call last week.

So work on popular questions you get fired your way and have your answers ready.

5. Be nice - If gatekeepers are short with you and you feel their being rude please don't take it personally. Put yourself in their shoes nowadays with all the calls that they have to deal with. Remember to be polite, professional but relentless.

Hope this has helped to get you started.

Stephen Tierney is one of the top telephone sales trainers and lead generating experts in the UK today. If you would like to have a complimentary visit from Stephen to see if  he can increase performance in any way for your company  then call now on 03333 444 147 or email info@mindcell.co.uk  quoting "comp visit"

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