How To Get Your Calls Returned

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

Businessman on the phone with thumbs upHere’s a question I got asked last week from a sales person who receives my weekly Sales Techniques newsletter.

“Sean, I hate it when you call or email your prospects and they never return your calls! It’s so frustrating. Can you advise anything? Thanks as always – Jeff G”

Here’s what I think:

You send an email, but the prospect does not respond. You then call and leave a message, but also no reply. You try to remain positive, but after few more attempts it seems that this prospect that was so interested will not return your calls. What is happening?!

Does this sound familiar?

I constantly have sales people asking how can they get prospects to return phone calls and emails, and the answer is simple: Only sell the return call or the email.

In every stage of your sales process, you should have but ONE objective. If you are calling to set an appointment—then sell only the appointment. If you are calling to get a return call—then sell only the return call. Typically, sales people try to sell everything at once.

Look at this example:

Tracy Drew of ABC Technologies is calling referrals from her customer, Lisa Jones.

There’s no answer so it goes to answer phone.

Sales Person:
“Hi Mr. Prospect, my name is Tracy Drew with ABC Technologies. Lisa Jones of XYZ suggested that I call. ABC Technologies sells the best techno-stuff and we can help you. Lisa bought some of our stuff and she thought you might want some too. So, I am calling to see when we can set up a time to meet and I can show you some stuff. Our stuff is the best in the industry and Lisa agrees. So, please call me at 0333 320 2883 or email me at [email protected] I will be in your area next week, so anytime then would be good or anytime at your convenience. Thank you…”

This sales person tried to sell:

1. Her company
2. Her products
3. The appointment
4. The referral value
5. The appointment time
6. Justification of the product
7. Industry recognition
8. Her reputation and more

The last thing she sold was the return phone call!! And guess what? No call back.

Often the sales person forces the prospect to make a big buying decision, instead of a little phone call decision.

Here is Tracy selling only the call back:

Sales Person:
“Hi Mr. Prospect, it’s Tracy Drew with ABC Technologies. Lisa Jones from XYZ suggested that I call you. Please could you give me a call at your convenience, it will only take me two minutes. Please call 0800 849 6732 whenever you get a quick minute and I think you will be impressed. Once again, that’s Tracy Drew with ABC at 0800 849 6732, and I look forward to your call. Thank you…”

In this example the sales person sold only the return call. It’s a key technique that we cover in our Telesales Training programmes that we run.

She did not even mention the stuff she was selling nor did she explain that the mutual acquaintance made a purchase; which does nothing more than put pressure on the prospect to also buy. No. This sales person sold only one thing: the quick phone call. Also, note the sales person stressed that the call would be quick and painless; she made it EASY for the prospect to facilitate the return call.

The same holds true for an email. Don’t go on and on in an email trying to reassure the prospect—just keep the one objective in mind.

With a phone call, an email or any other form of communication in the selling process, you must understand the objective at each stage and concentrate on that ONLY.

Take it one step at a time and you will get more returned calls and emails and close more sales!

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 4 March, 2008

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