Critique my cold calling script (telco industry)

16 replies
Hi all, I'm a dealer for a business telco. I call businesses to try and set up an appointment with the owner/decision maker where I can then review a phone bill and provide a tailored solution that will save the business money. We're targeting a smallish town, so our local service is also a big part of our added value.

There is a lot of call fatigue in this town so many business owners immediately shut down when you mention phones/internet/ etc. Below is my script. I want to hone it so I can cut through quickly and try to get them talking and finally to agree to meet with me.

OBJECTIVE:Get an appointment

* Please note this script is heavily influenced by Jason Kanigan. Thanks Jason

--

Hi. I’m not sure who the best person to talk to is – hopefully you can help me.
My name is xxxx and I’m from xxxx here in xxx. We help businesses by providing them with the best customer service and saving them money each month on their phone and internet. Can you point me to the best person?

- The owner isn’t in
No problems, when are they in next?

- I’m the right person
Great. Is now a bad time to talk?

I’m just calling to see if you’d be open to the idea of looking at some different ways to lower the cost of your phone service.

I know for a fact that 90% of businesses in xxx spend too much on their phone bills and don’t get great customer service when they need it. We can generally save a business up to 40% on their monthly call rates, and because we’re locally based in xxxx we’re here whenever you need to talk to someone. Does that interest you?

- No, we’re happy with the service we’re getting.
Ok, thank you for your time.

- Yes
Ok, here’s what I think:
- Running a business is tough enough to be spending too much on your phone and internet bills
- To cut down on your bills and put money back in your pocket, you need someone local who can sit down and analyse your current set up and provide a solution that suits your business needs
- By having a tailored solution, at the very least you can make an educated choice about how much you want to spend each month. And let’s be honest, less is best.

Do you agree with that? (most people say yes)

Typically our customers are:
- Eager to reduce their bills but are too busy to sift through and compare through all the pricing info that’s out there
- They’re frustrated when things go wrong, only to wait forever on hold and talk to someone overseas
- They’re concerned that they’re throwing away good money

If you’re experiencing any of these, we should set a time to meet for 15-20 mins. I can review your set up and provide a tailored proposal.

What do you think?
What day suits you?

There’s only one important thing I need you to do. Can you have a recent phone bill for me at the meeting.

Ok, looking forward to meeting with you. See you on xxxx

--

If I get a 'not interested' up front, I don't really try to save the call with a rebuttal. I just thank them and move on so I can make the next call and find that one business owner that is interested. Good move or am I just excusing myself?

Where can the script be improved so I can reduce the amount of 'not interested' or 'we're happy with what we have' type of objections?

Thanks for any guidance you can provide.
#calling #cold #critique #industry #script #telco
  • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
    In my main business which provides paper
    receipt rolls to clients like Puma and 10 #1
    retail brands here in New Zealand,
    ours is a cost savings.

    Those came in from cold phone calls.

    The script is..."Hi (name), who should I be talking with there
    about getting you people a better deal on your (phone and Internet bills)
    please?"

    That's it.

    Nothing about us.

    You are asking who you should be speaking with
    about an advantage to them.

    We never come across objections and the
    need for rebuttals on that script.

    When we get thru to the decision maker
    we say..."Hi Gary, I'm calling to see if we
    can get you a better deal on your (insert what they are using)".

    Now we get down to business.

    No fancy sales technics needed from here on in.

    You are both working for the same goal,
    seeing if in fact you can get him a better deal.

    Best,
    Ewen
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    • Profile picture of the author Kunle Olomofe
      Sounds uber. I will test this on my next run of calls.

      Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

      In my main business which provides paper
      receipt rolls to clients like Puma and 10 #1
      retail brands here in New Zealand,
      ours is a cost savings.

      Those came in from cold phone calls.

      The script is..."Hi (name), who should I be talking with there
      about getting you people a better deal on your (phone and Internet bills)
      please?"

      That's it.

      Nothing about us.

      You are asking who you should be speaking with
      about an advantage to them.

      We never come across objections and the
      need for rebuttals on that script.

      When we get thru to the decision maker
      we say..."Hi Gary, I'm calling to see if we
      can get you a better deal on your (insert what they are using)".

      Now we get down to business.

      No fancy sales technics needed from here on in.

      You are both working for the same goal,
      seeing if in fact you can get him a better deal.

      Best,
      Ewen
      Signature
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    • Profile picture of the author kher
      Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post


      The script is..."Hi (name), who should I be talking with there
      about getting you people a better deal on your (phone and Internet bills)
      please?"

      That's it.

      Nothing about us.

      You are asking who you should be speaking with
      about an advantage to them.

      Short and straight to the point.
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      • Profile picture of the author comrade
        Originally Posted by kher View Post

        Short and straight to the point.
        It certainly cuts through and quickly separates those that are/aren't interested.
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    Originally Posted by comrade View Post

    Where can the script be improved so I can reduce the amount of 'not interested' or 'we're happy with what we have' type of objections?
    Well, for one thing, if you want to reduce the "not interested" responses, then stop asking them "Does that interest you?" "Do you agree with that?" and "What do you think?"

    Here's my stab at it:

    "I’m the right person."

    "OK, let me ask...Do you feel you're spending way too much on your phone service? Because we've been able to save businesses up to 40% OFF their phone bills. [response] OK, sounds like THAT would be a good chunk of money back in your pocket, doesn't it? [response] Well, the only way to see how much we could save you every month is for me to do a quick analysis for you. It's free of charge and there's no obligation to you. And then you'll be the judge if you wish to proceed, fair enough? I need about 15 - 20 minutes to go over that with you - When's better for you to meet: Monday or Tuesday?"
    Signature
    "Best book on answering objections I have seen... it's for photographers but it has brilliant techniques you can use in any business." - Claude Whitacre. When They Say That, You Say This (Amazon Kindle)
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    • Profile picture of the author comrade
      Originally Posted by misterme View Post

      Well, for one thing, if you want to reduce the "not interested" responses, then stop asking them "Does that interest you?" "Do you agree with that?" and "What do you think?"

      Here's my stab at it:

      "I'm the right person."

      "OK, let me ask...Do you feel you're spending way too much on your phone service? Because we've been able to save businesses up to 40% OFF their phone bills. [response] OK, sounds like THAT would be a good chunk of money back in your pocket, doesn't it? [response] Well, the only way to see how much we could save you every month is for me to do a quick analysis for you. It's free of charge and there's no obligation to you. And then you'll be the judge if you wish to proceed, fair enough? I need about 15 - 20 minutes to go over that with you - When's better for you to meet: Monday or Tuesday?"
      Thanks MM, much appreciated. Concise and should establish a conversation.

      I have run into the 'we don't spend much so we're not worried about changing' objection on multiple occasions so I think I might tweak your opener slightly:

      Do you KNOW if you're spending way too much on your phone service? Because we've been able to save businesses up to 40% OFF their phone bills.

      This may get them engaging in a discussion, rather than flatly objecting. Thoughts?
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      • Profile picture of the author comrade
        Just an update. I've only got a small sample to base it on, but the script (after some tweaking) is paying dividends.

        As an example, I blasted through 40 early morning calls in 2 hours late last week with the objective to set up meetings this week with biz owners and get them to sign to my carrier. I got plenty of no answers and not interested's but was able to find 3 biz owners that agreed to meet. I've met with 2 already and signed them up on the day. The other I'm meeting with tomorrow for coffee and has verbally committed that if I can provide the rates we spoke about, he's happy to sign. It will cost me a coffee, though.

        We're not talking complex transactions but these prospects were qualified and were ready on the day. I just needed to make sure my message hit the mark and got it done. It's chalk and cheese compared to some meetings that our dedicated appointment setter has been setting. Her approach is an introductory meeting and at least 50-60% of the prospects forget you're coming or aren't prepared (no phone bill to analyse). She asks 'can a sales rep pop by' which I believe only leads to the prospect agreeing to get her off the phone.

        Lesson learned: calling can work very well if you have a structured script and will convert if you qualify prior to meeting.
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        • Profile picture of the author misterme
          Originally Posted by comrade View Post

          Thanks MM, much appreciated. Concise and should establish a conversation.

          I have run into the 'we don't spend much so we're not worried about changing' objection on multiple occasions so I think I might tweak your opener slightly:

          Do you KNOW if you're spending way too much on your phone service? Because we've been able to save businesses up to 40% OFF their phone bills.

          This may get them engaging in a discussion, rather than flatly objecting. Thoughts?
          I used the word "feel" purposefully. The word "think" gets them into their left brain analytical mind, the word "feel" is to get them into the emotional right brain. I want them to feel they're paying too much.

          Originally Posted by comrade View Post

          Just an update. I've only got a small sample to base it on, but the script (after some tweaking) is paying dividends.
          Thank you for the update. Was that script based on what I suggested?
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          "Best book on answering objections I have seen... it's for photographers but it has brilliant techniques you can use in any business." - Claude Whitacre. When They Say That, You Say This (Amazon Kindle)
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          • Profile picture of the author comrade
            Originally Posted by misterme View Post

            Thank you for the update. Was that script based on what I suggested?
            MM, yes I'm using your suggestion but have been saying "Do you know if you're spending too much" once I'm speaking to the business owner. I've been focused purely on the building/construction industry over the past 2 weeks and it's amazing how many owners say - "I don't know, my wife handles all that. You'll need to call her". I love hearing that because I tend to have a better close rate with female decision makers.

            I will start using FEEL instead of KNOW as a kind of A/B test and see how it goes.

            Also, a big thanks to Ewen and Jason for their advice on opening. I've cleaned up the beginning of the script and it's working much better.
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            • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
              Originally Posted by comrade View Post


              Also, a big thanks to Ewen and Jason for their advice on opening. I've cleaned up the beginning of the script and it's working much better.
              That same script of mine got me straight through to the decision
              maker at The Hilton Hotel today.

              Best,
              Ewen
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              • Profile picture of the author comrade
                Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

                That same script of mine got me straight through to the decision
                maker at The Hilton Hotel today.

                Best,
                Ewen
                Well......

                Don't leave us hanging!
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  • Profile picture of the author Ron Lafuddy
    Comrade,

    Telco is a tough industry to make it in.

    The churn rate is substantial.

    Unless you have inside information, you're
    flying blind when you see them. You don't
    know if they have bundled services with term
    plans or not.

    I'm curious. Can you switch them without the customer getting
    billed termination charges?
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    • Profile picture of the author comrade
      Originally Posted by Ron Lafuddy View Post

      Comrade,

      Telco is a tough industry to make it in.

      The churn rate is substantial.

      Unless you have inside information, you're
      flying blind when you see them. You don't
      know if they have bundled services with term
      plans or not.

      I'm curious. Can you switch them without the customer getting
      billed termination charges?
      We rely on the prospect to understand their current contract end date. If they don't know, I call their current provider during the appointment and find out on their behalf. Sometimes they're in contract and the savings we can provide aren't incentive enough to break it, sometimes it is.

      In the country I'm operating within, the major carrier (90% market share) doesn't contract fixed phone lines - just mobile and internet services. So most of the time, we can at the very least churn over their phone lines. Because I deal with business accounts only, that can often be a significant number of lines.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mwind076
    Too long...too much info...wasting time.

    Go with Ewen's one sentence and then get off the phone.
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    Originally Posted by comrade View Post

    MM, yes I'm using your suggestion but have been saying "Do you know if you're spending too much" once I'm speaking to the business owner...

    it's amazing how many owners say - "I don't know, my wife handles all that. You'll need to call her". I love hearing that because I tend to have a better close rate with female decision makers.

    I will start using FEEL instead of KNOW as a kind of A/B test
    It's also that asking a business owner if he "knows" what's going on in his business, such as if he knows if he's spending too much, can backfire because it can come off as insulting his business decisions. In other words, the implicit message is "you made a poor telco purchase decision because you know you're overpaying." It's also insulting because it implies maybe he doesn't even know if he's overpaying or not, suggesting he's clueless running his business.

    Now obviously it doesn't seem like an insult to everyone but everyone's different, and so you never know. If they're getting the insult message they may just nicely say they're not interested or they may say call me next week or some stall and not necessarily tell you to get lost. I'm suggesting "feel" also works in that regard to eliminate any suggestion that the business owner is naive or a bad decision maker.
    Signature
    "Best book on answering objections I have seen... it's for photographers but it has brilliant techniques you can use in any business." - Claude Whitacre. When They Say That, You Say This (Amazon Kindle)
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  • Profile picture of the author dublyfe
    I am doing a similar offering, but with allot of Cloud services and even renewable energy utilities. Focus is on efficiency. Technology has allot of ways to make people more efficient but if not managed properly it can do the opposite. I haven't done phone sales in a few years, but I live in Washington. So the days of in the field cold calling are closed, too much rain.

    I found this thread helpful, and I will use the information to try and make my own scripts
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