When experienced sales people make a sales appointment call they tend tend to:
- Be in a positive state. Many states are useful: Enthusiastic, interested, interesting, listening, mischievous, respectful are good examples. We suggest you create you’re own enlarged list and be able access at least three for each call, (see more in the states and anchors section of NLP coaching)
- Have a useful set of beliefs about yourself, the content of the call and your potential client. For example a) You’re giving your potential client a great and new option, whatever happens you’ve learnt something useful, b) many people have benefited from what you’re offering, c) Given the right information your potential client will make the best decision for both of you.
- Have a very plausible reason for the call and state it clearly. For example I’m calling to arrange a short meeting to discuss some problems or challenges in your industry (name them) and how we’ve helped solved them (top level examples).
- Speak only as long as necessary to achieve your objective. Speaking for too long may create the impression that you don’t respect both their and your time.
A sales appointment call framework.
The following telephone call framework has been adapted from the recommended book Slow Down, Sell Faster by Kevin Davis.
Kevin suggests a sales appointment call framework based on Courtesy, Problem and Action. Which works for me.
Remember that anyone you call is likely to be very busy and initially may not want to change. However, a minority will have a need now, and many will realise the benefit of keeping in contact with professionals (like you) that understand their issues. You want to make it easy for these people to meet you. For the sake of this post our objective is to agree a meeting. You can always default to a phone meeting if appropriate.
The main objectives from this sales appointment call are to get:
- 2 minutes say who you are, what you do, and how a meeting will be beneficial, and
- agreement to a 20 minute meeting.
A secondary objective is to leave a positive impression, however the call goes.
Example sales appointment call.
This is a typical call that I might make to potental clients. It’s brief, to the point, and respectful of their time.
“Hello, Mr Smith, this is Michael Beale from Business NLP Ltd. Are you in a meeting or do you have 2 minutes now?”
“I have 2 minutes. What do you want?”
“Thank you. I appreciate your time. 2 minutes works well…. I’m researching the best ways of making appointments, reaching decisions and closing opportunities … (Optional: “I’m currently working with names/companies he knows and respects or name somebody he knows and say they suggested he called.“)
The purpose of this call is to see it this could be of interest and if so, arrange a 20 minute meeting to introduce you to our latest thoughts and get your professional opinion on them.
If it is, Will you be available for a meeting next Tuesday at 3:40 pm or next Friday at 10:00 am or would you suggest a time that works for you?”
(Rare option – Add a mild confusion statement. We’ll explore what this means later.)
Assuming the answer is yes, then I confirm the email address, any other details, and get off the phone. I follow up with an email confirmation.
The objective is to make it easy for your potential customer to agree to a short meeting.
When sales people used to call me for a meeting I always respected those that were straight and direct. The way people ask for a meeting can be as important as the words they use. We’ll explore this in the NLP section.
We’ll consider handling objections in the next two sections. In the next section covers handling some classic telephone objections.
NLP Sales Section Index
Recommended Sales Books
NLP Sales 1: Introduction
NLP Sales 2: Customer’s buying cycle
NLP Sales 3: Questions to identify your initial problem and value statements
NLP Sales 4: Getting appointments (framework script)
NLP Sales 5: Handling classic and specific objections when getting appointments
NLP Sales 6: Handling other objections when getting appointments
NLP Sales 7: Advancing the sale
NLP Sales 8: Closing
NLP Sales 9: Value, proposals and negotiation
NLP Sales 10: Implementation, case studies, referrals and testimonials
NLP Sales 11: New Media
NLP Sales 12: NLP approaches that make the difference.