• January 15, 2015

Always Start Your Sales Call By Stating Your Goal

Much like a business meeting, a sales call should always have an objective.

Don’t be sucked into routine sales calls that lack purpose and leave the prospect asking, “What is the point of this?” You don’t need to have the exact minutiae of the call planned down the syllable, but there should be clear aims you hope to accomplish. If you don’t have any purpose, your prospect is definitely not going to believe in what you are saying and you will be viewed as a sales robot. So start your sales call by stating your goal!

(Also- Spiro’s sales automation CRM can help you have better sales calls!)

Think From Your Prospect’s Perspective

Have you ever been the buyer and sat through a sales call? In most cases, you probably weren’t very engaged in what they were saying, and you most likely didn’t pay a lot of attention. On the flip side, have you ever received an organized, purposeful call that convinced you they had a solution that could benefit your life? The difference is night and day.

Your goals and plans should involve some kind of way to bring your customers in and engage them with your pitch and your product when you start your sales call. An easy first step is to develop a clear purpose that you can succinctly state for your customers.

Why State The Goal?

Aristotle  — a guy who was a lot better at sales than I am — said “Well begun is half done.” I don’t know if he intended that to rhyme (it sounds something like “Καλά ξεκίνησε γίνεται κατά το ήμισυ” in Greek, but I’m a little rusty, so I don’t actually know how the rhyme translates.) Aristotle’s point, however, stands. A strong base for a sale or a meeting, or anything else greatly improves your chances of being entirely successful. It paints out the target, so you know what you are shooting for.

Sure, people get lucky all the time – but a big part of business is actually making your success repeatable, and waiting for lightning to strike is one of the less impressive business models I’ve encountered in my lifetime. Stating your goals forces you to have a purpose. It asks why you’re doing the thing you’re doing, in the way that you’re doing it. It forces you to justify yourself and your methods. It helps you avoid common mistakes in sales calls.

Additionally, it focuses the attention on your customers. It gives them a piece of context for your product and, more importantly, your sale. Finally, it makes you sound professional. Although increasing casualness is becoming more prevalent in business and sales, more people will react positively to a professional demeanor, and having a good goal that is clearly stated is an easy way of getting that across.

Involve Your Customer

Don’t just make your goal “I want to tell you all sorts of great things about new product X.” Your goals should be customer-focused. Remember earlier how we said that you should think from your prospect’s perspective? That applies to your goals, too. It’s simple to change the language of your goal a little to focus on the customer. For example, “I want to tell you about our new product” can easily become, “I’d like to explain how you can benefit from x, y and z.”

Empathy, putting yourself in your customer’s position, is important here, and can really be the difference between a successful sales call, and one that was close but no cigar. Customer empathy is one of the keys to Apple’s success.

Sales is about putting your best foot forward. This means confidence and charisma, certainly, but also necessitates a lot of preparation and background work. Strong, clearly-stated goals when you start your sales call are the first step towards making your sales calls more productive and profitable.

Photos courtesy of Flickr user ING Netherlands.