Although this chapter is not directly related to websites or marketing, it will offer you extra assistance in building your business. All of the tips and techniques in this chapter will prove helpful in accomplishing our overall goal, which is to get you jobs and make more money.
What if you increased your jobs by just 20% by establishing some simple phone scripts? That could easily add up to thousands of extra dollars over the course of the year, depending on your volume, upsells, pricing, etc.
Before we begin I want to explain where I’m coming from. A while back I dedicated an entire day to calling 30+ service companies in response to a marketing launch I had released. My goal was to give free consultations for a new service we were providing at the time.
I was shocked by the lack of phone skills. Only one out of four companies I called picked up their phone; instead the call was allowed to go to voicemail. In several cases the voicemail was not even set up, or had a voice mailbox that was full. And the ones that did pick up had very weak answers and not one had a solid script.
This is good news for you because chances are your competitors are weak on the phone as well. They are losing business daily and probably don’t even know it.
Imagine this as a secret weapon you have been handed. If you can “Wow” potential clients on the website and continue the “Wow” factor when they call, then you are almost guaranteed the job.
Why Should You Listen to Me?
I’ve had several jobs in the past that involved customer service and phone sales. I was trained to connect with the customer and close a sale. I naively took for granted that phone skills were common sense and something most people just did automatically, I remember we were always having some kind of ongoing training. There was always something new to discover about phone sales and building relationships with customers.
Back then, I thought it was kind of a waste of my valuable time to learn about customer service. Now I realize the reason the companies spent so much time and money on service skills is because it is not common sense, it is a skill. Skills need to be learned and practiced daily in order for them to become automatic habits. When you become a better salesperson and learn to connect with others, it will enhance every aspect of your life, personally and professionally.
Those rare companies that invest in customer service skills make their money back many times over. Their salespeople have more sales and less rejection, and they become top producers, simply because they know what to say and how to say it.
So, I’m going to break down what I’ve learned and what I applied to my own business.
6 Essentials Tips to Closing Deals on the Phone
- Just Pick it Up – If you want more work then pick up the phone. I know you don’t want to pick up the phone during the middle of a job, but if you’re a one-man show then you need to do it anyway. You need to pick up on weekends, in the evenings and anytime it rings, even when you don’t feel like it.
Of course, if you have a receptionist, spouse, business partner or someone else that can pick up the phone, then that’s ideal. I’ve seen the husband-wife arrangement and that works really well, but whoever is in charge of the phone needs to pick it up every time it rings.
The chances of closing a job decrease dramatically if they don’t get you right away. Many people won’t even leave a message. They will just call the next company and if they answer the phone and offer a solution to the customer’s problem, the business is most likely theirs.
- Voicemail – Set up a professional voicemail message. Don’t mumble or just say the name of the business. State your name and then the business. If you absolutely can’t pick up the phone, then you need to have a professional voicemail message setup. Make sure you smile on the message– more on that in a minute. Keep it short — 15 to 20 seconds.
VERY IMPORTANT: Call people back ASAP. Check your voicemail at least three times per day. People who call your phone are looking for a solution to their problem. If you wait too long they are gone!
- Answering Script – This will make you sound more professional and confident, and get you on and off the phone faster. Have your FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) ready to go. Having short consistent answers to questions will make all the difference in closing the sale and getting the business. Check out our website or give us a call for a sample phone script.
- Pricing Chart – If you do price quotes over the phone, then have a pricing chart ready to go so you’re not fumbling for prices, giving inconsistent quotes, etc. I noticed that when I started doing this, customers were much more responsive because they knew I was professional. I was giving them real pricing and not just quoting based on my mood or how well I liked their voice.
Also, if you are just pulling numbers out of your head on the fly, then it’s hard to remember what prices you quoted. It just doesn’t sound professional when you say, “Well, I think we could do it for…”. Having a consistent pricing system will allow you to grow your business.
- Smile when you talk. This is one of the most important and easiest things you can do. There have been countless studies by customer service experts who agree that when you smile, it comes through on the phone. Smiling and speaking in an approachable tone of voice ALWAYS results in increased sales and customer satisfaction. Some companies even put mirrors next to the employee phones as a reminder to smile while talking on the phone.
- Use their name a minimum of three times — This is another relationship builder that has all kinds of research behind it. Using someone’s name at least three times during the call will instill trust and make them feel more comfortable doing business with you. After all, we like doing business with people we know, like and trust.
I prefer to use their name at the beginning. I always ask them to spell their name as early as possible so they will know I am taking notes and am concerned about solving their problem. You will want use it once during the conversation and then at the very end: “Ok, Susan. I will see you Tuesday at 1pm”
I know it’s hard to form new habits if you have been doing things a certain way for a long time. This may sound like a lot of work, but it’s really not. All skills, just like riding a bike or using a piece of equipment, take practice and consistent use in order for it to become automatic action.
Just implement these tips one at a time. Once they become habit you won’t even think about them, and I promise it will make a HUGE difference.
So far, we have covered all of the elements to creating an amazing money-making website that instills trust and gets the phone ringing, and then how to close the deal once they call.
Are you getting excited about implementing these tools into your business toolbox? Have you grasped the idea that your website is truly a Money Machine?
The final section of the book will address traffic to your. This will include Google traffic using Search Engine Optimization, Facebook marketing.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
Intro to Book: The Service Business Money Machine
Chapter 1: The Power of Making It Easy
Chapter 2: Navigation Menus and Pages
Chapter 3: Going Mobile
Chapter 4: Website Look and Feel
Chapter 5: Domains, Hosting and Websites
Chapter 6: Building Trust On The Internet
Chapter 7: Video Power!
Chapter 8: Closing the Deal
Chapter 9: SEO – Understanding the Game
Chapter 10: On-site SEO
Chapter 11: Off-site SEO
Chapter 12: Google My Business FAQ
Chapter 13: Facebook Marketing
Chapter 14: Bringing It All Together