April 5, 2016

Many salespeople dislike working with sales scripts. They may feel like the scripts make them sound robotic, disrupt their active listening process and hinder them from selling.

However, sales scripts are effective when used correctly.

The key to a successful script is to include all of the right elements and avoid reading the script word-for-word. It should serve as an outline that salespeople can use to foster a conversation that ends in a sale.

effective-sales-scripts

If you are unsure of how to create an effective sales script for your sales team, keep reading. By the end of this post, you will know which elements you should include in your script for the best results.

8 Components of a Highly Effective Sales Script

1. A proper introduction

Be sure your salespeople are introducing themselves correctly. This will immediately begin to lower the prospect’s defenses. On the other hand, if your salespeople introduce themselves incorrectly, the prospect may hang up on them before they even get a chance to talk about what they are selling.

Here are a few tips to use to ensure your salespeople are introducing themselves effectively:

  • Tell the prospect your name.
  • Ask them if they have a moment to talk. If they do not, set up a different time to talk.
  • Tell the prospect why you are calling in a way that makes them want to continue the conversation.

Avoid having your sales team present their introductory statements in a robotic tone – being friendly and personable will get them much further in the sales process.

 

2. Rapport-building statements

The goal here is for your salespeople to make a great impression on your prospects so they are willing to listen and ultimately make a purchase.

Here are a few ways your salespeople can build rapport:

  • If a salesperson has met the prospect before, mention that. Even if she just connected on a social media site, like LinkedIn, she can use that to pique the prospect’s
  • Show that you understand his pain points. When the prospect feels like the salesperson understands his situation, he may be more likely to listen to your solution to his problem.
  • Find a common interest and use that interest to open up the conversation. If a salesperson is not sure what your prospect is interested in, look him up on social media to get some ideas.

Your salespeople can also use their tone to win over the prospects – simply match their way of speaking, and they will like them more. This works because people tend to buy from people they feel comfortable talking to.

 

3. Questions that get the prospect talking

Actively listening to a prospect sets salespeople up for success because it helps them think of the most effective questions to ask on the call. The questions they ask should help them uncover:

  • The prospect’s needs in relation to the product/service they are selling
  • The prospect’s goals (both long-term and short-term)
  • The prospect’s problems and how they can solve them
  • The prospect’s objections to what they are selling (so they can overcome those objections)
  • The prospect’s likes and dislikes about his current vendor (if they are trying to get him to switch vendors as opposed to selling him something he does not currently have)

You can often find these things out by asking open-ended questions. If your salespeople do not have much luck with that, you might need to coach them to be more direct and flat-out ask the prospect for the information they want. Then, they should be able find out which benefit of your product or service will entice the prospect to make a purchase so they can emphasize that benefit.

Keep in mind that your salesperson should always tailor her approach to the prospect and the product or service she is selling. That way, she will be perceived as a helpful consultant – not as someone who is untrustworthy and just trying to meet a quota.

Bonus: Read this blog post to learn how you can teach your sales team to use active listening to improve your sales results.

 

4. Value statements

For the prospect to see the value in what you are selling and buy from you, your salespeople must help him understand how your product or service will help him overcome a specific problem he is facing.

That means they cannot simply talk about product features or the general benefits of your services. Instead, a salesperson needs to keep the conversation focused on how your product or service would benefit him and position your product or service as the best solution for his problem.

salesperson-using-valuable-sales-script

 

5. Statements that establish credibility

Establishing credibility is important because it lets the prospect know that you are worth listening to. Your sales team can boost their perceived credibility by:

  • Mentioning the notable results you have achieved for other businesses (case studies and testimonials work great!)
  • Name-dropping major businesses you have worked with successfully in the past
  • Making the prospect realize that you have in-depth knowledge of how your product or service works and how it benefits businesses like theirs

Salespeople should also keep up with industry trends so they can communicate their insights when appropriate. The more knowledgeable they are, the more their prospects will care about their opinions.

 

6. Statements that handle objections

A salesperson should be well-equipped to overcome a prospect’s objections if she wants to achieve top sales results. Prepare effective responses to all of the common customer objections and include those in your script so your salespeople are prepared to handle a variety of objections at a moment’s notice.

 

7. A question that asks for the sale

Train your sales team to be direct and avoid backing down if the prospect rejects their first offer. For example, if he declines to meet up with one of your salespeople on a specific day because he is too busy, coach your salespeople to find out what time he is available and schedule a meeting accordingly. Make sure they schedule a specific time for the meeting – not just a date.

Bonus: Check out this blog post to learn how your team can close more sales.

 

8. A wrap-up statement

If a salesperson sets up a time to talk to the prospect, she should conclude the call by confirming the day and time of their next meeting. Also, be sure she thanks the prospect for talking to her and gives him her contact information in case he needs to reach out before their next meeting.

expert-salesperson-using-sales-script

As you can see, a sales script can be a helpful tool for salespeople who struggle to secure and close sales. But remember, your salespeople shouldn’t rely on their script completely. Instead, they should use it as a tool to guide their conversations so they can remain authentic and communicate in a friendly way that builds trust with your prospects.

Your sales team should spend approximately 20% of their call time talking and 80% of it listening so they can effectively uncover their prospects needs and use their sales script to present the product or service as a valuable solution.

Lastly, make sure you remain open-minded about changing your sales script when your results are lackluster. Refining your sales script  when needed will help improve its effectiveness and will be reflected in your sales team’s performance.