How to sell over the phone…like a pro

If the idea of trying to sell over the phone makes you break out into a cold sweat, you are not alone! However, as with all things in life and business, if you aren’t willing to take a few risks you won’t get the reward.

Our sales queen (and new VA), Eithne, shares her top tips on how to tackle the cold call sales pitch and win new business.

Read our Q&A with her below.

First off, can you tell us a bit about your background and how you came to work for SpareMyTime?

I’m originally from Brighton but moved up to London in my early 20’s to work in the City, which is where I met Melissa. Eventually, I moved back to Brighton and had a baby. During this time Melissa had set up SpareMyTime and when I saw she was hiring I took my chance!

Tell us about your client, Craddocks Bakery, and the work you do for them? 

Craddocks is an Artisanal Bakery based in both Ashtead & Epsom, baking traditional and specialty breads, cakes and treats daily. I am currently in the process of helping to expand the business by targeting local businesses to see if Craddocks can supply them with products for say a weekly staff treat, sandwiches for meetings, tea & cake mornings or residents coffee mornings, amongst other things.

The idea of selling my product or service over the phone terrifies me, any tips on how I should approach these calls?

It all depends who you are speaking to. I would normally go for informal and relaxed as this helps encourage people to let their guard down – which is often ‘up’ when they hear it’s a cold call!

How do you know who to call?

Put yourself in other people’s shoes and think would your product be of interest to them, or could it benefit them? Can you deliver what you promise to them on the call? Create a call list and make notes, learn from each call about what goes well and what not so well.

Do you have any tips for how to start off the conversation, before launching into the ‘sales-y’ part of the call?

 Just introduce yourself and be friendly, ask how they are and explain why you are calling.

How do you overcome the lack of face-to-face interaction & body language?

Just keep the conversation light hearted, polite, friendly & informative. Don’t talk for too long on the intricate details. Just make sure you get your main points across.

How can I effectively demonstrate my product / service over the phone?

Know your product inside out! Follow up with an email to your website & any additional information they would find helpful.

Is just one call enough, or do I need to arrange a follow up call or face-to-face meeting?

Definitely follow up calls & even a face to face meeting after the initial contact would be ideal if they are open to meeting with you. It always helps to put a face to a name.

How long does a typical sales call take?

How long is a piece of string! The longer the call is the better as you can get more information over to them and you are obviously keeping them engaged. If they aren’t interested you will know pretty quickly. 

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