2020? Behold my silent rage as I begin to unravel a sinister plot to sell me something I have absolutely no need for - or so I presume. I am the unsuspecting victim of another outbound, interruptive cold call.
I like being sold to. I do some selling myself. But getting spammed by blood thirsty sales reps is painful. If your company is still aggressively interrupting people with irrelevant fodder here's why you need to transform your outreaches before you piss off the world.
All calls are not evil and there's one kind of call I enjoy picking up.
Ain't Nothin' Wrong With Proactive Sales
Calling works well in Northern Europe. It's an important part of the revenue puzzle. But getting force fed a pitch from a serial cold caller is counter productive to any company or brand. In today's digitised, super competitive market, where differentiation is dependent on adding value from first touch, you really should think more in terms of "how would I want to be sold to" instead of failing to engage empowered people on their own terms.
I enjoy selling when incorporating an inbound sales approach and feedback from clients tells me my outreaches have largely been perceived as positive events. So what does inbound have to do with sales and why are inbound sales calls more worthy of your time?
Don’t Waste Time, Add Value
Inbound is most often associated with marketing. And just like with marketing, to keep up with today’s empowered buyer, the sales process needs to transform and reflect changes in buying behaviour.
“Inbound salespeople work to meet consumers where they are and then guide — not push — them through the decision-making process.” (HubSpot)
Moving from impersonal, interruptive push sales to value driven interactions supporting individual lifecycle needs and personal pain points was but a dream back in the day. Think the Yellow Pages. Today, digital has changed everything: Our ability to store, manage and utilise information online and off means we can hyper target, personalise and contextualise most if not all customer interactions - on a volume scale.
So an inbound sales call? Pick up the phone to see whether he/ she has done their homework. Is the caller utilising available information to make the call worth while?
5 Reasons Why Picking Up An Inbound Sales Call Is Worth it:
- Value add. An inbound rep will not call unless he or she has something of value to provide in exchange for the exchange. An impactful call has been prepared. It's a mutually beneficial affair.
- Raison d'etre. Real, pertinent reasons to call just this person have been identified in advance. Due to a proper qualification process, potential pain points are understood and the caller is in a position to - if not to help outright - sympathise with the needs and challenges of the prospect.
- Context. An inbound call seeks to acclimatise and support the prospect’s buyer’s journey phase. Knowing where a client stands advances mutual respect and understanding.
- Efficiency. Since there’s a clear value statement for the call, chances are (higher) the value of the call will be easier to assess. A mission also tends to imply structure and clarity of intent - wasting time is off the agenda.
- Real communication. An inbound sales call is not a pitch, but rather a dialogue. More listening than talking. Even if there’s a sale somewhere on the horizon, helping to understand and solve a problem, or understand potential options in more depth is foremost on the mind of a successful Inbound rep.
Pick Up that Inbound Sales Call
I love Jerry Maguire. I miss the classic Eighties movies.
Impersonal, mass targeted outbound should have, however, withered away eons ago. Yet it endures like some creepy bacteria in primordial muck. Move on!
The trend to become less responsive to untimely and irrelevant outreaches grows, so we need to modify our telephone usage to reflect how customer's buy. Do the homework, qualify prospects, understand context- and always add value.
Let's make that inbound sales call!