When you receive a business call from a potential client, it can be difficult to know exactly what to say. Telephone jitters are a legitimate worry for many pros who are otherwise confident in their sales skills—there is too much at stake during that first phone call to get anything wrong. Thankfully, we have a few tricks up our sleeve to help make sure you are always prepared for an unexpected call. Here are some of the best ways to convert business calls into actual appointments.
Know your brand
Confidence is key when it comes to selling your business to new clients, so a poised and self-assured conversational style will start things off on the right foot. For a business owner, coming across as confident is simple if you know your brand inside and out. Remember who you are, what you represent, and why your services are the best around.
Rehearse the script
While you can never be sure when a homeowner will call, you can practice potential conversations ahead of time to be as prepared as possible. Consider the types of questions a caller may have about your business and know what your answers will be. While it might seem silly, rehearsing calls out loud with friends or colleagues can significantly help you to boost your confidence levels on the phone and come across as knowledgeable and passionate about your brand.
Keep FAQs handy
When you receive a random call from a potential client, they will most likely want to ask questions about your business and address a variety of concerns. Although they can—and will—ask anything, you can usually anticipate some of their queries ahead of time. Most often, potential clients will want to know about:
- Your services
- Your pricing structure
- Your qualifications
- Any available references you may have
If you have this information on hand, you can easily refer to your facts and figures when homeowners call out of the blue and impress them with quick, succinct answers.
Anticipate a caller’s needs
When you’re talking to homeowners, it’s imperative to know what stage they’re at in their sales cycle. For example, a homeowner who is curious about the cost of a window replacement or which roof material type is best for their warm-weather home is most likely seeking information that they’ll use in their ‘decision’ phase. On the other hand, a homeowner who has a broken HVAC unit or roof damage from a recent storm is going to have much more urgent needs and will, therefore, be ready to make an appointment with you as soon as possible.
Unexpected business calls can often catch you off guard. Callers often have an uncanny ability to call at inopportune and busy times, but it is essential that you remain professional and approachable even if the timing isn’t perfect. A friendly, welcoming tone of voice and a genuine interest in callers’ needs will be more likely to lead to a follow-up appointment than a curt, sharp conversation that implies you have better things to do with your time.
Suggest a face-to-face meeting
This final step may seem obvious, but extending an official invitation to a client meeting is sometimes the only way to secure an appointment with potential clients. After you’ve answered all their questions and promoted your business the best you can, a face-to-face meeting can seal the deal for a new lead. Even the most confident caller may feel nervous about asking for a meeting, so a straightforward approach on your end will put them at ease and give you a chance to make a lasting and positive first impression in person.
Securing new leads over the phone is a tricky business that requires patience and practice. However, by following these simple guidelines you can put your best foot forward and impress callers with your business acumen, confidence, and knowledge. Before you know it, you’ll be looking forward to these kinds of calls and will be able to answer the phone with ease every time.
Next, make sure that your business always meets professional standards by following our guide to subcontractor etiquette.
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