How to Create a Sales Script

Whenever I am working with a startup company and training their sales team, the topic of sales scripts simply cannot be avoided. Many confident salespeople will say that they don’t need a script as it is too robotic and doesn’t sound natural.

Although I can understand this point, I just don’t agree with it. If you watch top actors on stage or in films, every single word is scripted, yet they can evoke a range of emotions from you to the point that you feel that it is completely natural. Salespeople are very much like actors, they have to develop their persona around every person they speak to. They have to give a different performance with every single call they make, from a likeable cold call performance, a trustworthy relationship-build performance to a close friend account management performance.

To make this clear, my standpoint on sales is that you have to be genuine and honest at all times, however, your intonation, your pauses, your breathing is all a performance, and so accept that a script is step 1 in the process of making sales. Only at the stage where your whole performance is perfect, then you should focus on leaving the script behind and start enjoying and improvising.

How to make a sales script

Everybody reading this blog will have a different product, a different USP, a different way to disrupt their chosen market. However, any startup focussing on B2B sales has exactly the same approach. They need to create leads, interest people, demo the product and then sign them up on a trial to then upsell to become a long term customer.

To make a sales script you need to get the structure correct for the whole call.

Often to explain the point that a sales script is like a journey where every step has to be completed before moving on to the next part of the call, I try to demonstrate this physically. I get all parts of the scripts written on sheets of paper and place them on the floor. Then I get the sales person to practice the script as they are walking so they can understand the importance of how linear the call should be.

How to write a sales script

Stay with me here and let’s apply this analogy to the call:

Stage 1: You call to introduce yourself. The responses and topics from the customer are very broad and conversation can go in any direction

Stage 2 : You ask company specific questions. The responses now are more limited and the topic of conversation is now heading towards a more focused direction

Stage 3: You ask product specific questions. The responses are now all focused on how you can help the customer

Stage 4: closing questions. You ask the customer if they are available for you to demo your product. You have led the customer down a path where their only option is to book a time for a demo as the context of the call has been set up correctly.

How to create a sales script

Sales Script Demo

Let’s look at an actual script that you can use. For the context of this, we can presume that there are no gatekeepers and you are speaking directly to the decision maker.

Opening Call

The Goal here is to simply, confidently and clearly introduce yourself. Don’t feel you have to justify yourself and never say “just”. Be confident of who you are. Also, you are politely asking for permission to speak, don’t just presume they are available because you have called.

You: Hi, can I speak to Mike, please?

Customer: Hi, Mike speaking. How can I help? (remember that Mike has received marketing emails, he has clicked on a guide and visited your site so you know he has a little context about you)

You: Hi Mike, my name is (X) and I am the owner of (insert company name). I sent you an email this week introducing myself, is it a good time to talk just for two minutes?

At thispoint, you could have already lost the sale. The first 10-20 seconds of a call are critical and the first 5 seconds are even more important. 

 How to write a sales script

Here’s how to avoid messing this up:

  • Introducing yourself confidently. You are going to convince this person to invest lots of time and money into you, so you should have the confidence to at least introduce yourself in the right way.
  • Always ask for permission. Just because someone answers the phone, it doesn’t mean they are free. You will only get one chance to introduce the product and so make sure you do it at a time when they are listening. If it sounds like the person is driving, eating, in a noisy atmosphere etc., just arrange to call back another time. Give yourself the best possible chance to set up the right foundations of a great call.
  • After you’ve introduced yourself don’t feel you need to justify anything. Don’t fill the silence with extra talking. Just introduce yourself and go quiet. The power of silence will actually emphasise the introduction you have just given and the customer will feel obliged to talk.

Product Introduction

Customer: Yes, just two minutes. How can I help?

You: Great. So at (insert company name) we (insert one line tagline for the company). For example: “Great, so at Teamgate CRM we are an all in one platform for sales teams”.

At this point, you have to make sure your company description is succinct and clear.

Please, do not fall into the trap of being one of those startups whose description is so complicated that nobody understands what they actually do as a company. If you are struggling with this please read the Mom Test. Also, you have learned that the customer has two minutes. If they have two minutes and they are interested this can lead to 5, 10 and 15 minutes…

Build the intro more then ask 1st Validating Question

You: We work specifically with startups to help them improve their sales conversions. I just wanted to check if you are using a CRM at the moment?

What we are doing here is giving the customer more detail of the exact market that we are targeting. We are then asking a validating question:

  • to establish whether they are a suitable customer to sell to
  • to learn more about them so we can help them

Listen, Listen more then ask 2nd validating question

Customer:  Yes, we use (insert software) at the moment (the customer will then go on to talk about this. Let them talk as much as you can and just listen).

You: Sounds great and how do you find (insert product specific question that you know will highlight their vulnerability), e.g.: “sounds great and how do you find their sales reporting?”

Firstly, our focus here is being comfortable with listening. Secondly, you want to ask questions to try and highlight to the customer all the areas where they are vulnerable.

Sympathise and agree

Customer: It’s ok, but I can’t set a calls per day target or find out where my sales leads are coming from.

You: I completely agree. With any CRM it’s so important to be able to understand what is working well for making sales and what needs to improve.

What you are doing here is showing that you agree with the customer and flatter that they know what they are talking about. Also, you are highlighting your industry knowledge to show expertise.

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Thank them for their time and get to the point

You: (insert customer name) I appreciate how busy you are and thank you for explaining your business in more detail. At (insert company name) we………..(insert more detailed product description that will excite the customer).

e.g. I appreciate how busy you are and thank you for explaining your business in more detail. At Teamgate CRM we have been working with startups for the past 4 years now. We aim to help companies like yours make sales, build scalable systems and create a framework for both training new sales staff as well as creating detailed reports for investors. I understand I have just called you out of the blue and so would you be free for a 10-minute demo this week where I can show you how the product works?

What you are achieving here is that you are giving a much detailed explanation of your software, showing good manners to thank them for their time, and then getting to the point to book a demo.

Close

Customer: Yes, that would be great. I am crazy busy this week but next week could work.

You:  Great, I’m free on Tuesday morning at 10 am or Thursday at 2 pm, what would be best for you?

At this stage you have to be very precise and get the call booked in. Don’t be too vague, just give them two set times and let them choose one. If they request a different time then I am sure you are free to accept it but just give the premise that you are busy and that you are organised.

Finish the call

Customer: Yes, Tuesday at 10 am would work for me.

You:  That’s great and I really appreciate your time. I look forward to running through everything next week.

From here you just want to make sure that the call is finished politely and you are setting up the framework for a great demo next week.

Full script altogether

You: Hi, can I speak to Mike, please?

Customer: Hi, Mike speaking. How can I help?

You: Hi Mike, my name is (X) and I am the owner of (insert company name). I sent you an email this week introducing myself. Is it a good time to talk just for two minutes?

Customer: Yes, just two minutes. How can I help?

You: Great, so at Teamgate CRM we are an all in one platform for sales teams. We work specifically with startups to help them improve their sales conversions. I just wanted to check are you using a CRM at the moment?

Customer:  Yes, we use (competitor) at the moment. ……………

You: Sounds great and how do you find their sales reporting?

Customer: It is ok, but I can’t set a calls per day target or find out where my sales leads are coming from.

You: I completely agree. With any CRM it’s so important to be able to understand what is working well for making sales and what needs to improve.  At Teamgate CRM we have been working with startups for the past 4 years. We aim to help companies like yours to make sales, build scalable systems and create a framework for both training new sales staff as well as creating detailed reports for investors. I understand I have just called you out of the blue and so would you be free for a 10-minute demo this week where I can show you how the product works in more detail?

Customer: Yes, that would be great. I am crazy busy this week but next week could work?

You:  Great, I’m free on Tuesday morning at 10 am or Thursday at 2 pm, what would be best for you?

Customer:Yes, Tuesday at 10 am would work for me.

You:  That’s great and I really appreciate your time. I look forward to running through everything next week.

Conclusion

Every sales call will not be this easy. There will be deeper discussions and there will be more objections (read more on “How to Deal with Sales Objections”), but I hope this script can give you a framework to find your tone and rhythm of how you would like to start to speak to customers in the future. With any sales call, make sure after every conversation you are making detailed notes in a sales CRM of what you have learnt both about the customer’s product and personal information so that you can follow up with them in the future.

 

Go to our website:   www.ncmalliance.com

 

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