What you say on the phone is extremely important. And people you talk to will pick up on things without you or them even realising it ! Also remember that what you say reflects what is going on in your head, (the internal dialogue as NLP practitioners call it) so staying  positive is key.

When carrying out team audits with telesales, telemarketing and internal sales teams we often notice agents being apologetic or negative about the suggestions they are making. This is a great shame as it undermines what you are offering.

Positive language and suggestion will help you sell more

On one team audit we carried out for a Midlands based vending machine company we advised the client to brush up on some of the sales language. “Is there any way I can send some info out ?” suggests that you are asking them a big favour. It also implies you are expecting a ‘No’ too.  In training, we often talk about how asking a question framed as a suggestion sounds so much more assertive. An alternative therefore might be “OK, what I’d like to do is send you some information about our latest range of vending machines. I’ll then give you a call early next week when you’ve had the chance to have a look at it. Is that ok ?”

I’m not pretending that making such changes to your ‘script’ is easy to do instinctively, being a good salesperson requires practice, and so does being an effective phoner. And remember your voice is the only tool you have to use.

On another team audit with a company in the board packaging industry we noted the need to minimise negative language. One one call Tim said “I’ll find out what went wrong” in answer to a question from a customer who’d had problems with a previous product. There are other ways of wording this so that it doesn’t sound so serious. “Ok, I’ll have a look into that for you, and I’ll ask Sharon our product development manager to give you a call to discuss it with you. Would that be ok ?”

Finally when talking business with clients and prospects avoid provocative phrases “to avoid harassing you on a weekly basis.” Make it sound warm and human by all means but don’t ‘suggest’ things which have negative imagery. Unless you’re marketing Marmite – in which case “you’ll either love it or you’ll hate it” is probably ok !

This is a topic that comes up frequently in our courses in Leicester, Northampton, Birmingham, Coventry, Cambridge, Milton Keynes, Daventry, Solihull, Lichfield, Corby, Kettering, Wellingborough, Nottingham, Derby, Loughborough, Melton Mowbray as well as wider parts of Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, the East and West Midlands