Telesales in a nutshell is the process of selling services or products to customers over the telephone. As a telesales representative, you reach out to existing and new customers by calling them over the phone to encourage them to purchase what your company is selling. In addition to exceptional communication and knowledge retention telesales requires the agent to be patient, persistent, perceptive and persuasive. The primary aim of telesales is to build a repeat and recurring business through exceptional customer relationships.
Some of the goals of Telesales requires the agent to
- Convert leads into customers.
- Use data to pursue promising leads and existing customers with persistence and determination via cold calling.
- Provide brand distinction and recognition through exceptional communication skills and impactful buyer impressions.
Telesales, from the beginning of time, has a couple of negative and bleak connotations attached to them. Despite the bad press, telesales has survived the test of time and is now largely used in business-business environments. To completely understand the significance of telesales, it is imperative that these myths be dispelled.
Myth #1 All you need is the gift of the gab
All you have to do is keep talking. Talk over people and just keep talking
Wrong! This myth comes from the belief that ‘telesales is all about pushing the sale’ which means pressurizing the customer to make quick decisions and buy it. Rarely does this happen and it generates a lot of bad press because the tactic employed is pushy and intrusive.
The Fact: Telesales agents are required to do their share of talking, yes but not in a way that overrides the needs of the prospect. Primary information like the company the agent represents, the business offer, and additional information regarding the same can be divulged. But the agent can move beyond that only after listening to and gauging the level of interest of the prospect and their needs. Therefore all-talk is no way to lead a telesales conversation. If anything, it is the recipe for disaster.
Myth #2 You need a script to close the deal
Take every cue from the script. In fact, just talk off of it.
Busted! Telesales agents are not scripted robots. Especially when the whole point of the job revolves around educating and convincing consumers of differing perspectives and personalities to buy a certain product or service.
The Fact: Anybody in the telesales industry knows that there is a lot of power in natural and organic conversations. While notes with important product or service details are something most telesales agents refer to, it’s not the driving force of the entire conversation. It’s instrumental in the pitch as it contains details about the lead, the offer and the product but it’s not a generic script applicable to any and all customers from the get-go to the end of the call. Following generic scripts to the tee is a bad idea because it makes assumptions on what the customer wants, restricting the flow of conversation eventually resulting in friction between the telesales agent and their prospect.
The agent is more likely to find success by asking thoughtful questions and creating a space where the customer feels like the priority. Rather than using scripts, campaign guides can be used to allow agents to deliver and acquire relevant and required information through meaningful interactions that contribute to creating personalized and unique experiences for the prospects. In short, scripts are tools of the past and now, companies are inching towards personable approaches over emotionless and robotic sales scripts.
Myth #3 Objection is just another opportunity for sale
If the client is saying no, then he really means yes.
Busted! If the prospect was really interested, the agent would know. But if he isn’t overselling or hard-selling is not the way to go about it.
The Fact: Objection can be used as an opportunity to collect more information and discuss the perception of the prospect with regard to his or her needs. The last thing callers want is a hard sell. Prospects want to hear how the products or services may solve their problems i.e. if they are interested, to begin with. If customers aren’t interested, then there’s no point in thrusting down information they do not want, which unnecessarily creates a bad rep for the company in the eyes of the prospect.
Myth #4 An aggressive personality is a must for sale
Only a pushy and aggressive personality can drive the call to get the best results
Busted! When was the last time anybody wanted to spend their time talking to someone who is pushy and manipulative? Never! This is why this doesn’t work in reality but is accepted as one of the biggest prerequisites of being a telesales agent.
The Fact: Aggression doesn’t lead to much except maybe a poor impression of the company in the eyes of the prospect. Good telesales agents develop their own approach to a sales pitch and modify them according to the type of caller they are dealing with by giving the callers space to voice their doubts and concerns and ask questions. This is because modern telesales works on the practical belief that solving problems is more important and effective than pushing a reluctant client into a forced attempt to buy.
Myth #5 Anybody can do i
‘All you need is a phone’.
Busted! If a phone is all that is required to become a telesales agent, we would all be doing it! And even if we all start doing it, how many of us can really achieve the desired results?
The Fact: Telesales are not for everyone. Like all specialized jobs, telesales requires agents to possess a particular skill set. In addition to training, the agent is also required to have qualities like patience, articulation, concentration, empathy, confidence, etc and talents like excellent communication skills, amiability, knowledge retention, listening skills etc.
All these qualities come together in creating a genuine rapport with the prospects that are essential in achieving results. Agents have to focus on educating prospects and converting them into customers while also juggling all these skills and putting them to good use at various points of the call. The honest truth is that not everyone can do it, but those who can, do it to perfection!