Most businesses know that they need to constantly train and motivate their sales team if they want their company to grow. However, appointment setting is another key segment of the process that is often overlooked. Without learning how to effectively set appointments, your sales team will never have a chance to shine.
So, what are the most important things to focus on to be successful in B2B appointment setting? Get answers by checking out our 16 appointment setting best practices below.
1. Do Your Research
What do you know about this company before you pick up the phone? If you’re just winging it, you’re probably not going to be very successful. Show respect for the company you’re calling by understanding their company’s purpose and identifying specifically why your product could serve them. Check out their website, read about them in industry news publications, check out their social media, and review research data before the call.
2. Build a Relationship
It’s difficult to build a solid foundation in just one phone call, but the best appointment setters hone this art by sounding warm and approachable over the phone. Adapt to your client’s style and don’t be afraid to call back again if you aren’t able to schedule an appointment the first time.
3. Talk to the Right Person
When you’re trying to sell a company on your product or service, it’s crucial that you talk to the decision-makers. They’re the ones who call the shots and will have the authority to purchase whatever you have to offer. Don’t waste time trying to win over someone who can’t make decisions on behalf of their business. Before you get started, ask who the person is and what their role is within the company.
4. Broaden Your Scope
Though we advise against wasting time talking to the wrong person, that doesn’t mean you won’t have to talk to more than one person before you secure that appointment. Many companies have overlapping roles and multiple decision-makers, so don’t get discouraged if you have to give your pitch to multiple people.
5. Be Patient
You know the saying—good things come to those who wait. And when it comes to appointment setting, this means you’ll often have to play the long game, attempting to secure an appointment several times with the same business. Keep a good attitude and consider each attempt as putting you one step closer to your goal.
6. Sell the Appointment
Appointment setters aren’t technically salespeople, but they do need to use sales skills to convince a client to get an appointment on the calendar. People are busy, and they need to know why they should give your company their valuable time. Without getting into details about the product, convince the client why the appointment will be worthwhile.
7. Expect Challenges
As with any task, you’re likely to face challenges as you seek to set appointments. Don’t let these challenges stop you from reaching your goal. Instead, use each obstacle as an opportunity to better understand the client and know what you need to do to secure the appointment.
8. Stay Focused on the Goal
Remember that the job of an appointment setter is to get a meeting on the calendar, not to extensively discuss the product. Though it’s important to build rapport with the client, remember to stay focused on the task and don’t waste too much time talking about other things during the call.
9. Listen Carefully
The most effective appointment setters know that you can’t just jump right into the offer when the client picks up the phone. Instead, take a few minutes to ask them about their goals and identify what is important to them. This will help you explain why setting an appointment will be beneficial to their company.
10. Remain Flexible
If there’s one thing you can always expect with appointment setting, it’s that not everything is always going to go as planned. If you can anticipate this and roll with the punches, you’ll be much more effective in your job.
11. Prepare Your Pitch
Do you find yourself fumbling through the conversation, not really sure what to say? If so, this is a sign that you need to do better at preparing your pitch. Rehearse your company’s values and mission statement, remember the benefits of your product and study scripts before you talk to the client.
12. Outsource the Job
Appointment setting takes a great deal of time and resources, and not every company is interested in doing the job in-house. Luckily, outsourcing is an excellent way to save money and give your team more time to do other important jobs to build your business.
13. Cite Case Studies
Case studies are an excellent way to increase your success rate in setting appointments. By showing a client how your product or service has worked for other people, they’ll be more motivated to give you their time for a sales call.
Sometimes appointments fall through. Clients might forget about the phone call, get busy with something else, or just decide it’s not a priority for their business. When this happens, don’t get discouraged. Call the client back and do everything you can to get a new appointment on the schedule.
15. Utilize Several Platforms
Are you trying to get face-to-face with every prospective client? If so, you could be missing out on other effective platforms. Don’t shy away from email, text, or chat as a way to book appointments. Busy clients might appreciate being able to multitask while they talk.
16. Ask Directly for the Appointment
Talking to a high-profile client can be intimidating, causing new appointment setters to beat around the bush while they’re on a call. But, this only wastes time and confuses the client about the purpose of the conversation. Asking directly for the appointment is the best way to secure the meeting and clearly communicate your purpose.
Your clients are overwhelmed with meetings, emails, and choices to make every day. By honing your appointment setting skills, you’ll be able to cut through all the noise and secure the meetings that help your business grow. Don’t wait to implement these 16 tips—once you do, your company is sure to see lasting results!