- Silent Selling
5 Steps to Converting a Phone Call into a Sale
If your business phone rings, it could mean money. If it rings in the sales department, it definitely means money! Are you doing everything you can to turn an interested caller into an interested buyer? If not, why not? Your customers are interested in buying your craft beverage – they called you! And at this time of year, that phone is probably ringing off its hook.
Inbound phone calls can be a real money maker for you if you are smart about it. It’s an under-utilized sales channel with many DTC craft beverages. Being good at inbound phone calls goes beyond being polite and courteous or even being helpful and hospitable. If you are really listening to your customer and understanding their needs, you have the potential to turn a phone call into dollars – all in a brand-appropriate and natural way.
Many people are so concerned with being gracious on the phone; they are not hearing what the customer really needs and are too afraid to ask for the sale. With phone sales, it’s faceless communication – it’s all verbal. These are the 2 most important tones for selling – Knowledgeable and Enthusiastic. With faceless communication, you can’t be wearing a $500 outfit, have that all-important head nod or knowing and excited smile. Your voice HAS to convey all that. You want your caller to think: “This guy knows what he is talking about!”
There are five steps to an Inbound Sales Call. Turn these five steps into your blueprint for phone-sale success:
1. Open of the Phone Call
So, when the phone rings, remember, they called a sales line – offer the sale! Don’t assume they don’t want to buy. Don’t waste their time if they do. Ask for the sale. You can establish the call right away as a sales call by asking if you can take their order after you’ve introduced yourself on the phone. For example:
- Thank you for calling “Craft Beverage X Sales Line”, my name is ___.
- May I take your order please?
- “Yes” – Process their order & collect contact info
- “Not sure” – What questions can I answer to make you comfortable about your wine decisions?
Play it by ear – if they say “well, I have a couple of quick questions or a couple of questions first”, that is a buying signal – so answer: what can I answer to make you more comfortable with your decision.
2. Answer Questions Succinctly
Giving too much unsolicited information causes confusion. Avoid info overload and confusion. Turn negatives into opportunities. For example:
- Does this beer have a lot of hops?
- Well, that depends – some people think this is full of flavor, but that depends if you like hops – some people think hops make a beer bitter, but actually, hops makes for a good balance to the malt sweetness….
3. Listen & Learn
Ask questions to learn the caller’s needs and interests. Listen for “buying signals” and key information. For example, the caller says: “I really like the IPA XYZ beers, but I’m not sure I want to spend that much right now with the holidays.”
The need – IPA XYZ beer
The buying signal – I’m not sure I want to spend that much (obviously willing to spend something though)
The right fit – Very similar, less expensive IPA. Beer Club members save 20%.
Help your customer by understanding their needs and delivering a solution that is a win-win for everyone. You can up-sell and cross-sell to your customer.
The KEY to successful Up-selling: IT IS ALL ABOUT THEM. Offer the best options for their particular needs and interests. For example: “Since you mentioned shipping costs, our Beer Club offers complimentary shipping on everything you order.” Or “Since you mentioned shipping costs, the price for shipping 6 bottles is only $3 less than shipping 12.”
The KEY to successful Cross-Selling is figuring out: What else will THEY like? Offer new options that expand their experience, but align with their likes. Think of the Amazon model… “If you liked this, you will like this.”
Learning the caller’s needs and interests, finding a fit for them, and then being able to offer them something else they might like or need, that’s just great customer service!
4. Handle Objections
Be sure you understand the objection, before solving it. For example, the caller says: “I’ll probably wait and think about it.” Find out what the objection is: “Did I leave out any information you need to help you decide?”Once you know what the objection is, solve it. For example, if the caller says: “I’m not sure I’ll love it,” remove the doubt. Use enthusiasm or referrals (yours or others) to remove doubt. Personal and other customers’ experiences remove the doubt.
If the objection is the risk or a downside, find a solution to remove the risk. For example, the caller says: “I don’t want to buy a case and not like it.” Offer a sampler package or a smaller amount to try first. Offer incentives on shipping… etc.
5. Close the Call
Finish up the call by closing the loop. Ensure you’ve answered their needs. Be positive, and use inclusive language like “We look forward to seeing you.” Show interest in their needs: “We have this pricing through the end of the month.” Ensure you have their correct contact information – Ask for it!
This breakdown of the five steps of a call can help you create a system for navigating your calls, and by doing so, offering better customer service as well as incremental sales. That’s just smart business. Are you ready now to give good phone?
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