Chapter 1:Turning B2B Telemarketers into Deal-Sealing Rockstars
Ah, the life of a B2B telemarketer – a world filled with endless phone calls, countless rejections, and the eternal quest for that elusive “yes.” It’s a tough gig, no doubt about it. But, as it’s our lead generation bread and butter, there’s obviously something we love about it!
From the moment we pick up the phone, we embark on a journey into the unknown. Each call is a chance to connect with someone new, someone who may just be the key to unlocking a successful sale. Our tagline is “Start the conversation…” and every touchpoint you have with potential sales leads is an opportunity to start that conversation and potentially turn it into revenue. So, how can we telemarketers make the most out of every telesales opportunity? Let’s dive into some tips and tricks that can help you dial and deliver results!
At Smartlead, we believe that every telemarketer has the potential to be a deal-sealing rockstar. Our mission is to equip you with the tools and strategies you need to make the most out of every sales call. From achieving brand awareness, to keeping your pipeline flowing, to eventually meeting and exceeding your sales targets – outbound business-to-business sales calls are the best method of getting your message directly to the people who matter.
The B2B Telemarketing Playbook
What sets B2B telemarketing apart from your average cold call?
The art of B2B telemarketing is more than just picking up the phone. It requires a strategic approach and a deep understanding of the businesses you’re targeting. Unlike B2C telemarketing, where you’re often reaching out to individuals, B2B telemarketing involves selling products or services to other businesses. And you need to demonstrate your understanding of them, their market and their pain points and be able to position your product or service as the solution they need to soothe them.
To be successful in B2B telemarketing, you need to have a solid playbook. This playbook is the secret sauce to achieving success on the phones. And it should look a bit like this:
A. Ensure leads are properly qualified before a telemarketing call
It’s crucial to target prospects who are genuinely interested and have the potential to convert into loyal customers. Here’s how.
1. Define Your Ideal Customer Profile:
Before diving into any sales call, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of your ideal customer profile. Identify the characteristics, demographics, and behavioral patterns that align with your product or service. By defining your target audience, you can focus your efforts on reaching out to those who are most likely to benefit from what you offer.
2. Leverage Lead Scoring:
Implementing a lead scoring system can significantly help in qualifying leads before making a call. Assign a numerical value to different attributes such as job title, company size, industry, and level of engagement. This scoring mechanism allows you to prioritize high-value leads, ensuring you invest your time and resources where they are most likely to yield positive results.
3. The 3 Rs. Research, Research, Research:
Before you even pick up the phone, it’s crucial to do your homework. Take the time to research the company you’re calling, their industry, and any recent news or developments that may be relevant. Even if it’s not your first conversation with this prospect, update your research before EVERY call. This will not only help you tailor your pitch to their specific needs but also demonstrate your knowledge and expertise.
4. Have a Clear Objective
Every sales call should have a clear objective in mind. Are you aiming to schedule a product demo? Or maybe you want to gather more information about the prospect’s needs? Whatever it is, make sure you define your goal before making the call. This will keep you focused and ensure that you make the most out of every conversation.
5. Develop a Winning Script
While you don’t want to sound robotic, having a script can help you stay on track and make sure you cover all the necessary points during the call. Customise your script to address the pain points of your prospects and emphasize the key benefits of your product or service. Remember, the script is a guideline, not something to be strictly followed word for word. Adapt it to the flow of the conversation and make it sound natural.
6. Prepare a Powerful Opening:
The first few seconds of a sales call are crucial. Craft a compelling opening statement that grabs your prospect’s attention and makes them want to hear more. Focus on the value you can provide and how you can help them overcome their challenges. Remember, you only have a few seconds to make a lasting impression. Some handy cold call opener are tips available here from Indeed.
7: Personalise Your Pitch
One size does not fit all when it comes to sales calls. Take the time to tailor your pitch to each prospect’s unique situation. Use the information you gathered during your research to address their pain
8. Active Listening is Key
But let’s face it; not every call goes according to plan. Sometimes, we end up talking to someone who would rather listen to elevator music than have a conversation with us. It’s in these moments that our patience and determination truly shine.
As telemarketers, we’re in the business of building relationships. Every interaction is an opportunity to create a connection, establish trust, and ultimately convince someone that our product or service is worth their time and investment. But how can we maximise our chances of success on each call? How can we ensure that we’re making the most out of every precious conversation? Listening, that’s how.
B. Strategies for Overcoming Customer Resistance: Building Rapport and Making a Connection
When you finally get a prospect on the line, remember that building rapport is essential. Take the time to establish a connection and build trust. Ask open-ended questions to encourage conversation and actively listen to their responses. Show genuine interest and empathy, and let them know that you understand their pain points.
Remember, it’s not just about selling your product or service. It’s about starting a conversation and building a relationship. By focusing on building rapport, you lay the foundation for a beautiful, mutually beneficial friendship.
Handling reluctant prospects – an example
As a telemarketer, one of the most rewarding experiences is successfully converting a reluctant prospect into a potential customer. It’s like waving a magic wand and seeing their skepticism vanish. One of our sales stars, Trevor Singh, has an anecdote for you:
The Time Trevor Got Frosted by a Prospective Client
“Once upon a time, I, Trevor Singh from Team Awesome at Smartlead, experienced what we in telemarketing like to call ‘Iceberg Syndrome’. It certainly wasn’t a one-off, but this case was notable because of how quickly it turned around to a sale. Iceberg syndrome is where a possible client seems as warm and welcoming as a chunk of frozen water in the middle of the Arctic. From the moment I chimed in with my ever-bubbly intro, he had that “Trevor, I’d rather be watching paint dry than talking to you” vibe. But hey, no one said sales would be a walk in the park.
My solution in this is situation is to stop talking; start listening. Start being a shoulder to offload onto. Never underestimate the power of a good old moan. Through asking open but not too probing questions into the client’s previous disappointing experiences with telemarketing services in the past, I let the client spill out his deepest, darkest frustrations, throwing in the occasional “Tell me more” and adding a sprinkle of “Been there, done that, got the T-shirt” vibes to ease his mind This isn’t just about being polite — it shows you value their opinion. And I did value his opinion.
Adapting my conversation style
Everyone’s got their lingo, right? Here’s the deal: matching your prospect’s communication style can pay off. This client didn’t seem to respond well to formalities, so I dumped my professional talk about “opportunities” and “challenges” and just spoke to him like we were acquaintances in the pub.
“So your last telemarketing experience went south. What happened?”
“What’s your idea of a magic wand solution?”
“If you had all the budget in the world, what’s the first thing you’d change about your business?”
“How do you feel about trying something to mix things up a bit?”
Raising the Humour Bar
Ever walked into a room so tense you could carve your name on it? Sometimes all it takes is a joke to bring that tension down a notch. Using humour is a brilliant way to “break someone’s state” and take us from an unfavourable position into a place where we’re starting to build rapport.
Using humour can be risky – and it’s important to gauge reactions. I prefer to use self-deprecating humour to avoid causing any offence. In this case, when the client alluded to being exasperated with tech issues and it taking up so much time, I shared my own technological ineptness by telling him I tried unplugging and plugging my toaster back in hoping it would reboot. All it took was lightening the mood, showing I wasn’t an overdressed penguin with a sales pitch, and before we knew it, we were sharing laughs, not awkward silences.
It’s Benefit Showtime, Baby
Once I had him smiling, he opened up like a book. It wasn’t War and Peace, but it was more than enough. Then it was onto showcasing our super benefits. It was all about painting a grand picture of how our solutions were like the superhero his business needed — but think fewer capes, more practical solutions.
Deal or No Deal, Trevor Style
After all that, it was showtime! I sneaked in the big question — the culmination of all the trust-building and rapport. Drumroll please… “Are you ready to take your business to the next level?” Guess what? He was!
Sales is really just an art of listening actively, adapting swiftly, using human-speak not sales-speak, and being helpful. It’s about making prospects feel understood, valued, and occasionally, making them chuckle a bit!”
Tune in for the next Chapter – available on 26th July. We’ll be covering how to objection-handle like a pro, follow up and nurture leads after the initial conversation, and which critical metrics to measure to monitor your telemarketing success.
You, too, can conquer the B2B telemarketing world. To transform your sales performance, check out our Smartlead Training Academy.