When selling products or services, you must evaluate whether a prospective buyer is a good fit for what you are selling. Different buyers have different needs. Failure to match the right product or service with the right prospective buyer won't work. Fortunately, you can overcome this challenge by performing discovery calls. A discovery call is a phone-based communication with a prospective buyer in which you ask questions to determine whether he or she is a good fit for the product or service you are selling. For effective B2B sales discovery calls, consider the following tips.
#1) Inquire About Their Biggest Obstacle
During a discovery call, ask the prospective buyer what his or her biggest obstacle is that's restricting their business's growth and success. Prospective buyers seek products and services from B2B vendors to solve a problem. Maybe a prospective buyer's business is struggling to turn a profit, or perhaps it's currently using an outdated product that's no longer supported by the manufacturer or vendor that originally sold it. By inquiring about their biggest obstacle, you'll learn more about the unique problems prospective buyers are facing.
#2) Identify Products or Services Currently Used
You should also try to identify the products or services currently used by the prospective buyer during a discovery call. Assuming the prospect's business isn't new, he or she may already be using a different product or service from one of your B2B company's competitors. To generate a sale, you'll have to convince the prospective buyer that your B2B company's product or service is better and more valuable. This is only possible, of course, if you know which product or service he or she is currently using.
#3) Personalize, Personalize, Personalize!
Don't underestimate the importance of personalizing your discovery calls. B2B buyers receive a lot of calls. After all, they are usually decision-makers who manage teams of employees while also facilitating deals with vendors and suppliers. If you don't personalize your discovery calls, you'll struggle to create a meaningful and strong connection with prospective buyers.
You can personalize a discovery call by addressing the prospective buyer by name. You don't have to mention any other information; just addressing the prospective buyer by his or her name will suffice for personalization. When the prospective buyer hears their name, he or she will recognize your call as being legitimate and not part of a spam scheme.
#4) Talk With Confidence
Talking with confidence can improve the effectiveness of your discovery calls. Since discovery calls are one of the first communications sales reps have with prospective buyers, many sales reps lack confidence during them. Without confidence, though, prospective buyers may question the value and legitimacy of your product or service. You'll have greater success by projecting confidence in your voice during discovery calls.
Here are some tips to improve your confidence during discovery calls:
#5) Don't Be Pushy
A common mistake sales reps make during discovery calls is attempting to aggressively sell their products or services. A discovery call isn't the time or place for aggressive sales tactics. On the contrary, you should focus on gaining more information about prospective buyers during discovery calls. You can still discuss your B2B company's product or service and how it can benefit the prospective buyer's own business, but use caution so that you don't sound pushy.
#6) Research on LinkedIn
Prior to performing a discovery call, research the prospective buyer and his or her business on LinkedIn. Assuming the prospective buyer has a high-level position, he or she will likely have a profile on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the most popular social media for business executives and owners. According to HootSuite, it's used by over one-quarter of the entire U.S. population. As a result, there's a good chance a prospective buyer uses LinkedIn as well.
Researching prospective buyers on LinkedIn can help you learn more about them and their business's needs.
#7) Schedule a Follow-Up Call
You may not close the sale during the discovery call -- and that's okay. Remember, discovery calls are used to determine whether a prospective buyer is a good fit for the product or service you are selling. Since you may not close a sale during a discovery call, you should use this opportunity to schedule a follow-up call. If the prospective buyer sounds interested -- and you believe he or she is a good fit for the product or service you are selling -- ask him or her when is a good time to further discuss the deal.