Over the years I've seen many talented teleprospectors struggle consistently to hit their goals. They could posses all the core skills necessary to be a top performer but the bad habits they develop can dictate the "ebb and flow" of their performance.
There's a lengthy list I've encountered being in the trenches as long as I have, most of which you've likely seen me yammer on about in a blog here or there, but I figured it would make sense to narrow it down to the ones I see most often.
Here are 7 of the most common habits that can have a negative impact on a teleprospectors performance:
1- Not setting your goals- All too often inside reps don't set specific call goals for themselves. If your call output is erratic, then the amount of opportunities you're going to uncover will be as well.
2- Not following a call plan- You need to follow a consistent strategy to communicate with your prospects. One call and one email once a week will not generate the response you're hoping for. Our research tells us that you need to touch them an average of 6 times before you generate a response. Following up a voicemail immediately with an email as well as suggesting a 5 minute outlook calendar invite should all be part of your strategy.
3- No effort put into pre-call planning- Think before you dial. Our mindset should be "What am I looking to accomplish here?" on each and every dial you make. Do a little research on your target company and if you have the time, look-up the Linked-in profile on your prospect. It's all about time management; if you're just blindly picking up the phone and dialing away to hit a call number then your results will most likely suffer.
4- Not being resourceful- Just sticking with the same unresponsive name on your list will leave you spinning your wheels. Think about pressing zero # when you get a voicemail for the 3rd time in a row. This should route you back to an executive admin who could point you in a more appropriate direction. Most assume using admins is a dead end, but they can be our best assets.
5- They sound like they're reading from a script- The last thing you want to do is sound like a drone on the phone. We work with our reps to come up with a collective script that we are all comfortable with. This allows them to feel as if they've taken some ownership over the process and the messaging flows much more naturally.
6- Blaming their list- Unfortunately no list is perfect. Even the most reputable list vendors provide 70% accuracy at best on their lists, even if they say it's much higher. Being resourceful will solve any issue you have with a list.
7- Lack of resilience- Guess what, most people don't want to hear from you. You will get blown off. Remain focused and follow suggestions mentioned above and you will see a significant increase in your lead conversion rate.
We may all have fallen prey to at least one of the seven bad habits above. If you're in a rut, take a look at a few of the suggestions I've made above. I’m positive they can help!
I've only touched the tip of the iceberg here. Does anyone have any other bad habits they want to share?
Craig Ferrara is the Vice President of Client Operations for AG Salesworks. He has extensive experience in the sales and teleprospecting process. Craig joined AG Salesworks in 2003 and has successfully managed several teams of high-performing Business Development Representatives. To read more of his articles, click here.