Telephone prospecting is one of the best ways to get in touch with a prospect. One of the biggest challenges is the opening line. A powerful sales hook is essential for a salesperson, enabling him or her to arouse the prospect’s interest and optimize the chances of closing a sale.
The challenges of a good sales teaser :
- Interrupt your conversation partner in the middle of his or her activity without annoying him or her.
- Get his undivided attention
- Create a wait
In this article, 20 proven opening lines.
Phrases never to say on a cold call
“Don’t hang up! I promise it won’t be long.”
“I’ve tried to reach you several times…”
“You may have heard of [competitor] but they [bad-mouth stuff]”
“We are the market leader
If you’ve ever been on the other end of the phone, you know how ineffective these phrases are. Let’s start with what not to do in a cold call:
- Don’t give your name and context: It’s crucial to introduce yourself clearly and briefly explain the purpose of the call. Yes, I’ve seen the Gong studies, which say that the longer a call, the more likely it is to work. Yes, I’ve seen that if you say you’re a stranger right away, it can put off the person in front of you. Yes, yes and yes. But if you don’t say who you are when you interrupt someone in the middle of the day, it’s 100 times worse. Always. Without exception.
- Asking how you’re doing without saying who you are: Asking questions without first introducing yourself creates confusion. This is the corollary of the first point. Until your caller knows who you are or why you’re calling, you can’t move forward.
- Start the call with a sales monologue: Avoid monopolizing the floor right from the start. Of course you have to deliver your pitch, but the most important thing is to get your “foot in the door”. Any signal of interest from the person you’re talking to. And to get it, he or she has to be able to give it to you.
- Not being able to blacklist someone and call them back: Not being able to respect a prospect’s wishes can damage your company’s reputation. If you’re clearly told that you don’t want to be contacted again, and that you’d like the number to be deleted, it’s essential to respect that. Yes, it’s hard, yes, resilience, yes, courage, yes, energy. But that’s the law.
- Apologize at length for bothering him: The more you apologize, the more you insist that your call is intrusive. It doesn’t inspire confidence, and it doesn’t make people want to listen to you.
#1 The base
If you’re not sure how to start a cold call, introduce yourself! Depending on who you’re talking to, choose between a casual approach with a simple “Hello” or a formal one with a “Bonjour”.
#2 This is a cold call
Be direct and honest
#3 My friends’ friends are my friends
To increase your chances of success, mention that someone the prospect knows gave you their information. This is probably the best introduction to a cold call, because the person who recommended you is a source of trust for the prospect.
#4 Key figures
Present information and/or analyses that could be of interest to your prospect (in his or her sector in particular).
#5 A little gentleness in this rough world
A recent Gong study showed that asking a prospect if he or she is well increases the success rate of cold calls by 10%.
#6 Don’t waste time
Specify the reason for your call. This allows the prospect to find out a little more about your product, and gives you the opportunity to check that you’re talking to the right person.
#7 Have you heard of us? / We know each other, don’t we?
#8 Ask them for help
An effective approach is to seek your contact’s assistance and opinion right from the start.
#9 You have beautiful eyes, you know?
The aim is to find a positive aspect to mention about the company, such as a project you enjoyed, and to explain why you thought it was well done.
#10 Refer to a common interest
You can mention something you have in common with the prospect. It shows you’ve done your research.
#11 Don’t despair
Emphasize that you’re glad your prospect has picked up the phone.
#13 Thank them for their time
#14 Who’s got the big one?
Mentioning competitors encourages your prospect to stay online and listen to you.
#15 30 secondes top chrono
#16 They know you know
Mention that you’re calling them following an e-mail they’ve opened (and yes, you know everything!).
#17 Tell them they don’t know you
#18 The solution is you
#19 You’ve seen his latest Linkedin post
#20 You have something important to tell them
You’re bothering them, but you’ve got something important to tell them. According to the Gong study, specifying the reason for your call multiplies your success rate by 2.
Best practices for creating sales hooks
Before each call, doing in-depth research on your prospect helps you personalize the call. Clearly define an objective to guide the conversation, and prepare yourself by anticipating possible objections.
At the beginning of a call, always start with a personal introduction to establish a good bond with your prospect. Keep your exchanges simple and brief, with a confident, friendly tone. Testing your opening lines and personalizing them will also help you improve your performance. Be direct and transparent about the reason for your call, and choose the right moment.