Appointment setting: It is a universally difficult part of business development, and the most common roadblock to growing your business through increased sales.
For most businesses, no sale will happen without first speaking directly with a prospect. If you can get in front of (or on the phone or computer with) a prospect, you can make the sale, right? You have great salespeople who can close all kinds of deals if given the chance.
The sales presentation itself is rarely the challenge; getting the presentation set up is. Your success as an entrepreneur/salesperson/company calls for you to become a better appointment setter.
Here are some that might help you set more appointments, rather than just make a bunch of unproductive calls that steal away precious time from your day with little to no ROI.
DON’T LET PROSPECTS THINK YOU NEED THIS DEAL
While there are some things you really do need, such as air, water, food, and shelter, you don’t need any single business deal. If prospects sense fear in your voice (as in a fear of losing the deal), they instantly pull back, or worse still, try to take advantage of that fear to negotiate all kinds of unreasonable concessions.
The ‘trick’ here is to engage prospects with an if-you-don’t-buy-from-me-it’s-not-the-end-of-the-world attitude without sounding like you don’t care about them.
YOUR FIRST GOAL IS TO HELP THE CUSTOMER
Prospects will instantly resist setting an appointment with you if they think you’re just in it for you. Right up front in the first seconds of the first contact, you must sell service, not selfishness. This is especially important because before you even open your mouth, your prospect is already in a defensive mental position. B2B appointment setting is even harder because as a business sales rep you have to present your whole organization and it can make it hard to relate.
OTHERS LOVE WHAT WE OFFER, AND YOU WILL TOO
One of the most effective ways to break the ice early and have a prospect respond with genuine interest is to offer an example of how you helped another customer with a problem common to the industry.
For example, you could say, “XYZ company was losing a lot of money because of early expiration of inventory. We introduced our system, and they began saving $35,000 a year, with a payback time of six months. Have you ever had a similar problem with your inventory? When can we talk about that?” Short, sweet and to the point. This is a surefire way to get a qualified lead because they know how you will be able to help them.
OUTSOURCING YOUR APPOINTMENT SETTING
Not every salesperson is a great appointment setter, even if they follow these tips. Or, they are great appointment setters but need to focus more of their time on selling. In other words, they need to be fed a stream of appointments that have already been made for them, so they can get on with what they do best; closing the deal. Scheduling appointments is time-consuming.
All kinds of businesses, large and small, across all kinds of niches, outsource their appointment setting. However, if you want to outsource this task to one of the many appointment-setting services out there, you should be extremely cautious in whom you choose.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT APPOINTMENT SETTING SERVICE FOR YOU
Google appointment setting service and you’ll be faced with a HUGE list of companies vying for your business. Obviously, every single one of them will have a blurb – that then leads to a website – promising that their company is the best possible choice. That they can set you the most appointments, at the best rates. So, how do you even begin to make a choice? Here are some pointers.
EXPERIENCE IS EVERYTHING
With so many third-party lead generation and appointment setting companies to choose from, you should (scratch that, must!) look for those who can demonstrate real, verifiable experience in appointment setting, not just in general lead generation.
Competency is as much an important trait for an appointment setting team as is having a talent for selling. The team you hire needs to have proven experience and they need to be real.
What do I mean by that? Too many lead generation and appointment setting services consist of a single entrepreneur and an ever rotating set of freelancers working for a few bucks an hour. There is no consistency, no real team and no expected level of experience. In short, there is no company. A potential client or sales lead can feel that from how you present yourself so having a professional approach to this by outsourcing your appointments will help you seem trustworthy and help you with closing sales.
CAN THEY MATCH YOUR COMPANY’S TONE?
Every company has a corporate voice, or a brand tone. For some it is rather serious and formal. For others, like our sister company, Pearl Lemon, a lighter tone is the mark of their brand. Here at Pearl Lemon Leads we are also rather lighthearted, but we know how to get more serious when it’s called for.
The best appointment setters ensure that their tone matches that of your business whenever they interact with your prospects. If they make use of scripts, those scripts are bespoke in nature and tailored specifically for your business. Or at least that’s the way we do it at Pearl Lemon Leads and we believe that it’s the very best way to do things, and our results – I’m pleased to say – bear that belief out.
CAN THEY KEEP IT UP?
In terms of generating sales appointments, it’s crucial that you feed your pipeline continuously with warm prospects who are ripe for conversion. Three sales appointments just won’t cut it. You need to make sure that the sales cycle keeps turning, so you will have to opt for an appointment setting service that knows how to deliver the results you need and do so on a consistent basis.
Ready to work with an experienced, proven appointment setting team that will get you the results you need? Contact us today to learn more.