Do You Need a Sales Script to Close the Deal?
The Pros and Cons of Relying on a Sales Script to Sell Your Brand
The much-argued sales script, does it actually work? Well, the answer completely depends on your brand and your salespeople. For some, a sales script helps calm the nerves and keep people on task. For others, it may feel too constricting and could kill the “vibe” of the sales call.
There are pros and cons to using a sales script. Let’s take on the cons first.
Salespeople Sound Robotic: Nothing is worse than reading a sales script verbatim over the phone. You cannot hold a conversation that way, let alone, build a relationship. Sticking to the script can take the entire creative finesse out of a sales call.
They Don’t Listen: No, it’s not the prospect who’s not listening, it’s the salesperson. If they are too focused on a sales script, they aren’t really “hearing” the potential client on the other end of the line.
High-Performing Sales People Hate Them: If your brand is married to a sales script, you may find it tough to hire experienced salespeople. Experienced, successful salespeople want and expect autonomy. They want to be trusted to close the deal.
All of those arguments are sound and reasonable. The truth is a sales script may not be for your brand or for you people. However, there are several reasons to consider a sales script of some sort.
Builds a Sales Structure: Sales scripts force your team to plan and think things through. By developing a sales script, or at least bullet points, you are creating a structure. You can really polish your entire sales process by sticking to a script.
The Entire Team Learns Together: When you have a sales script that everyone is using, success can be shared.
Example: Let’s say one of you people deviates from the script and consistently performs better. Great! Incorporate what they are doing to the sales script. Now, everyone can be in on the new tactics.
A Measurable Process: Your brand can live and die by stats; sales stats in particular. A sales script lets you measure the success of your sales team in a very tactile way. A sales script helps you to bring new people up to speed faster. It’s easier to train and set goals if the playing field is level.
The Bottom Line
Having some sort of sales script is a good idea, BUT make sure that script allows for conversation. If your sales team members are droning on and on without taking the potential clients’ questions into account—you’ve lost. A good script should include:
- Your name and your company (nerves may make you forget)
- Why you are calling
- How long this call will take (a few minutes)
- Ways they can reach you
- Bullet points of what needs to be accomplished
And that’s it; the majority of the script should be bullet pointed information to remind you to approach each person on the other end of the line as an actual human. Listen to their voice. Are they in a rush? Are they quiet? You need to be able to stray from the script when necessary to adjust your approach.
Also, be prepared for any curveballs thrown your way. If you need to deviate from your bullet points, don’t be afraid to do so. And if you don’t have the answer, just be honest and let them know you will find out and get back to them.
Remember, you are talking to a person, neither one of you are robots. Conversation can take you further than a fully scripted approach.