Episode 17

Art Sobczak, President of Business by Phone and host of The Art of Sales podcast (among other things), joins us on The Building Code to talk all things sales.

Art has always had a passion for sales. After taking various sales jobs from age 13 through high school, getting a business degree from Creighton University and working for a year at AT&T, he decided to start his own business. It started as a sales consulting company and has morphed into a sales training and publishing company.

Art’s specialty is using the phone as part of the sales process; because our builders are primarily dealing directly with their prospects and customers, the phone plays a huge part in that.

What is Art’s biggest piece of advice? Simply put, let people talk. Your company’s sales team needs to focus on one thing: allow people to talk when you’ve got them on the phone. Start by asking them what they’re in need of or why they contacted you, and let them run with the conversation. It doesn’t matter if you have a question in the middle of their answer … let them finish, and then ask and respond.

Not only will asking “Why did you reach out?” help you get the prospect’s true reason for calling (like what they need done in or to their home), but also it will help you understand which of your marketing initiatives are working. Their response might be, “Oh, I saw your website, and I like your photos,” which is a perfect testimony to your marketing efforts.

Whenever you receive a new lead, answer he or she as quickly as possible. Living in a world where we leave a website if it takes more than five seconds to load, providing instant gratification to a new lead is a must. To help put this into perspective, attach a price tag to your leads. If you decide that each lead costs you $50, would you really just throw $50 out the window? If that $50 lead can turn into tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars, you should jump on that right away.

When it comes to starting the conversation with a lead, have a script handy. But follow it like an actor follows a script – in a conversational manner, not like a telemarketer reading something word for word. Be comfortable enough with your script so you know where to go with it.

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