Eliminating Common But Not So Obvious Opening Value Statement Mistakes
By Michael Pedone
Your opening value statement plays a critical role in advancing the sales process. It is what you say after "Hello, this is ..." that will determine if you will be advancing the sales call or shooed away.
There are lots of integral parts to a successful opening value statement and today we are going to focus on a few common but less obvious mistakes that may be causing your prospects to pull back rather than lean in.
"We work with companies like yours…"
This screams "I SAY THIS TO EVERYONE AND YOU ARE NOTHING SPECIAL TO ME". If you truly help companies like theirs, why not use the power of the other companies names to your advantage? So instead of saying "we work with companies like yours" you could say "we recently helped COMPANY 1, 2 AND 3"
"I'd like to learn a little bit about your business..."
This is a misguided - or I should say "misinterpreted" - understanding of Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People (great book, btw) theory that people like to talk about themselves. Although true in principle, it is false when using it as part of an opening value statement while selling by phone. Calling someone out of the blue and saying in your opener that you want to "learn a little bit more about their needs" is a sure fire way to have your prospects interest in speaking with you fall to sub zero in no time flat.
People are too busy to educate you on how it is you can help them.
"Just thought you'd like to know…"
This is usually followed with what I call a mini sales dump or a "spray and pray" and it fails often and hard. Even if you had a strong "reason for the call" that was going to follow your "Just thought you'd like to know" statement, major damage can already be done as the rest of what you say may be falling on deaf ears.
Why not just shorten it from "Just thought you'd like to know" to "we" as in "the reason for my call is we recently helped company 1, 2 and 3… _______"?
Not only will your message have more impact, but you'll also say it in less time.
CSS: Chief Sales Scientist
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