Before you ever lift the receiver to make a customer call or a cold call you need to established not one, two objectives.
By doing so you’ll increase your volume of sales/leads and reduce your level of frustration. While both objectives are extremely important, one is more significant than the other.
The Primary Objective
Whether it’s a call to an existing client or a prospect, take a few seconds to think about and establish your primary objective. In a perfect selling world, the primary objective is the ideal goal you would like achieve. It the ultimate result. A primary objective does not necessarily need to be a ‘sale.’ Depending on the nature of your calling, a primary objective could be an appointment, or gathering a key piece of information, or a commitment to the next, or attendance at a webinar, or agreeing to review a proposal or whatever you decide you want from that particular call.
Write that goal down somewhere even if it is in the column of a sheet of paper. Studies reveal that writing a goal increases the chances of it being achieved compared to a goal that is not written. It seems that the ‘mind’s eye’ become more fixated on the attainment of goal and tends to drive behaviour to that outcome.
Of course, primary objective is important. It is vital. But curiously, it is not necessarily the more important of the two.
The Secondary Objectives
You see, most sales reps ‘get’ the concept primary objectives. They are kind of obvious and intuitive.
But what many reps don’t ‘get’ is the concept of secondary objectives, and regrettably, they tend to ignore them completely. But it’s these little puppies that often produce the best results because they maximize the moment. This is precisely why secondary objectives are more important the primary objectives.
Secondary objectives are ‘back up’ objectives; things you’d like to accomplish if you don’t achieve your primary objective or things you’d like to accomplish in addition to achieving the primary objective. They are the little extras; the nice-to-haves. Hidden gems. Diamonds in the ruff. They are the items that leverage your telephone contact and help make the very most of the moment. Put another way, secondary objective can act as catalysts that help “synergize” the net result of your call.
Secondary objectives can be any number of things. For instance, they might include:
- a cross sell,
- a request for a referral or a testimonial,
- an up sell,
- a piece “market intelligence”,
- a query about an ongoing project,
- a strategic question,
- an e-mail address of another contact,
- a request for more information,
- the mention of a new product,
- the best time to reach someone
- … virtually anything over and above your primary objective.
Here’s the other thing about secondary objectives. Suppose you don’t achieve your primary objective. It can be discouraging especially when prospecting. But a secondary objective helps you salvage a portion of that call. It gives you the feeling of achievement; a psychological edge. It helps combat frustration and burnout. You hang up feeling that the call wasn’t a complete waste of time and effort. And of course, if you do achieve your primary objective, anything over and above that is pure gravy.
Like primary objectives, write them down. This will help you remember them as well as improve the likelihood of achieving them. It is that simple. Period. Do it!
Getting a hold of a client or a prospect by phone is tough at the best of times. And often you only have a minute or two of their busy time. Make the absolute MOSTof those minutes and seconds by being prepared. Think of your primary and secondary objectives, jot them down and seek to achieve them. Your results will improve dramatically.