How to Leverage Immediacy of the Telephone in B2B Selling

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In the pre-internet sales world, the predominance of the telephone was apparent in all segments of B2B selling with timely communication tools limited to only a few choices. In 1986, Carol Kleiman reported that “it`s estimated by the year 2000 there will be 8 million people trying to sell you their products over the phone.” Running alongside this trend was the evolution and growth of the Internet, and birth of e-mail, company websites and Social Media platforms Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, etc. The result is that the planned tactical use of the telephone in selling has become even more powerful.

When Cahners Publishing presented this research report on, “Evaluating the Cost of Sales Calls,” in 2001, the cost of one in-person sales visit had increased to $329. In today’s complex B2B sales environment, when multiple sales visits are generally required to persuade many prospect buying influencers and specifiers, the cost of closing sales has doubled or tripled in many segments.

With the increasing pressure to control costs and to close B2B sales in a timely manner, a well thought out integral use of the telephone has become an essential component of staying focused on your customer-centric business branding and having a successful sales group.

Here are seven steps to help you implement a program for your sales group;

Step #1 Orientation

Step #2 Observation

Step #3 Objectives

Step #4 Database

Step #5 Target (with CRM)

Step #6 Strategy

Step #7 Customized Script Guide with Test Program

Similar to the benefits of instant communication with social media through smart phones and texting, the immediacy of a personal telephone conversation emphasizes the richness and vibrancy of the message.

Customizing this program to the specific sales and marketing structure of your company becomes essential to maintain a robust pipeline flowing. More details in future articles on applications where the telephone can be used to increase sales, speaking and listening training techniques, and the development of a customized Strategic Marketing Plan.

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