There’s both an art and a science to great B2B sales calls. At Volkart May, we’ve used every outreach during our 30 years as a lead generation call center to perfect it. We’re constantly learning, evolving and improving our approach—and happy to share those results with other B2B, medtech and manufacturing sales and marketing professionals.
In fact, in 2020 the Volkart May team:
- Made 900,000 B2B sales calls
- Connected with 358,000 companies
- Reached 57,000 decision-makers
- Generated 24,000 qualified B2B sales leads and appointments
5 B2B sales call tips to master
Here are a few of our lead generation call center’s top sales call tips to help you generate more leads, set more appointments and increase your sales.
1. Set a clear objective
Before you pick up the phone to contact a B2B prospect or customer, make sure you know exactly why you’re calling. Too often, top-of-the-funnel conversations fail because an inexperienced sales rep tries to accomplish too many things in a single engagement, or starts a conversation without a plan.
Once you have a single goal in mind—such as identifying the decision-maker at the company or setting up a future appointment—you can create a call strategy to meet your objective. Don’t forget to include something of value for your target audience so your call recipient knows you’re using their time wisely.
2. Create a conversation
There’s nothing worse than a high-pressure sales rep (or a robodialer) where no one can get a word in edgewise. The best B2B sales calls happen when there’s mutual respect between the sales team and your B2B prospect or customer.
The best approach is to treat the sales call as a two-way conversation. Take time to ask questions—then truly listen to the responses. Don’t focus too strongly on closing the sale, especially in early conversations. Instead, build a trusted, collaborative relationship so your B2B prospect or customer opens up with you. Demonstrating empathy, especially during the challenging conditions of COVID-19—is another must for your outbound callers.
3. Prioritize your questions
Most B2B decision-makers have busy schedules. It’s imperative to use their time wisely. As you prepare for a B2B sales call or appointment, consider what information you need to gather, then prioritize your questions. What you ask should also be appropriate to your stage in the sales process.
For example, early discussions might focus on gathering background information, such as current products in use, purchasing budgets, timelines and names of those involved in the sales process. Later conversations may be more in-depth and revolve around specific pain points and product functionality. What’s essential is recognizing you can’t capture all necessary information in a single engagement; it’s smarter to tailor your questions to support a natural dialogue.
4. Prepare for objections
Objection handling can make or break a B2B sales call. Our sales call tip here is to prepare in advance. Common objections to plan for include timing, awareness and cost. As you make B2B sales calls, you will likely uncover additional obstacles related specifically to your product or service.
When you consider these objections in advance, it gives you a chance to practice rebuttals and find strategies for overcoming these roadblocks. By anticipating objections, you’ll be far more effective during actual customer and prospect calls, and less likely to let negativity impact your performance.
5. Leave a voicemail
It can be tempting to make one or two B2B sales calls to a company and if no one answers, move on to the next prospect. However, effective outreach takes commitment. In most cases—and especially during COVID-19, when many individuals are working from home—it will take multiple calls before you connect with your target decision-maker. It’s smart to plan for several attempts per contact.
It’s also advisable to leave an inside sales voicemail after three or four call attempts. A well-crafted voicemail creates another touchpoint for your brand in the overall sales process. Even if the B2B prospect or customer doesn’t call back immediately, the voicemail can reinforce your message.
More B2B sales call resources available
These are just a few effective B2B sales call tips we rely on at our lead generation call center. For even more ideas and strategies to improve your lead generation, check out our articles and resources. Or, contact us to discuss your specific sales call questions.