The primary objective of any sales call is to get the prospective buyer to take action. Is a lead an actual prospect? To qualify a lead, we must first get his attention and build his interest prior to “qualifying” him/her and moving to a next step or action.
Getting a prospect’s attention is best accomplished with a conversation that opens with something that:
- The prospect has shown previous interest in – for example the subject of the whitepaper they downloaded, webinar attended or blog post they responded to.
- Other people in the prospect’s position have shown interest in – for example, all sales managers have an interest in getting new employees contributing revenue faster.
- The prospect is associated with – professional association, social cause or non-profit, college, team, hobby, personal interest or hometown.
- The prospect’s company has published, shown interest in, been reviewed about, etc.
Prospects respond to different styles of communication, and what motivates them to act:
- Top Executives are concerned about vision
- Senior Managers are concerned about strategy
- Functional managers and contributors are concerned about tactics and execution
As a guideline:
Executives and managers are:
- Interested in – the end result and benefit
- Not interested in – product/service features or capabilities
Functional managers and contributors are:
- Interested in – how a seller’s product or service will help them execute their job
- Not interested in – bold results claims
- Optimized selling organizations have made the investment to understand their buyer’s interest and communication styles and have developed opening statements, emails and voicemails to best employ these communication styles.
The results from this investment are an improved ability to get a prospect’s attention and interest and the invitation to discuss how you can help. The magic words from a prospect “tell me more” are the clearest indicator of success.
- Get a prospect’s attention better by including something that they, or someone like them have shown interest in, or been involved with
- Understand how your different buyers communicate and tailor your opening statements to best serve those interests