For this week of answering questions, I want to focus on one question per episode (and still do my best to be 10 minutes (ish) or less.
In this episode, I answer the question “Why don’t my callbacks answer when I call for our appointment?”
Ever have that happen to you? Seems like the prospects all suck because they don’t show for the call/meeting you set with them?
You may or may not like my reason why that happens.
Episode 56 – Transcript
Hello and welcome to another episode of the sales experience podcast. My name again is Jason Cutter.
So glad that you’re here. One thing I realize as I was thinking about the last few weeks and if you know me in general or you’ve ever been involved with any of training or meetings I’m in is once I get on a roll I can keep going and keep talking, especially if it’s sales related, especially if it’s solving problem, answering questions, just tackling sales related, marketing related, operational related issues.
It’s funny because each time I’m going into these question and answer episodes, I’ve got this long list of questions that I want to tackle in my mind. It’s okay, great. I’m going to go through all these.
Next thing I know I’ve only gotten through one question and literally still pushing up against the 10 minute kind of framework that I’ve set with expectation for everyone listening just to keep these manageable, keep the shows short enough where you can listen to it and on a short drive or short commute or short break that you have before work, during middle, after, sometime around there to help get your daily dose of kind of some sales techniques or strategies, whatnot.
What I’ve realized is that, what I should do and what I’m going to do this week is take one question and episode answer that however long that takes under 10 minutes and then, not try to push into many questions in once. And then next week my goal is to get back into some tips.
If you’ve been listening to this, you want to hear the regular stuff where there’s a theme week and we’re going through one topic in particular in diving in deep, next week I’m going to do that. So make sure you listen to this week’s episodes with the questions and the answers. And the next week we’ll get back on track for that. As always, you can go to the cutter consulting group.com website. Find the episodes there, find the full transcripts. It’s on iTunes and Spotify, Spotify, Stitcher, Soundcloud, all over the place.
You can find a link for that on the website, everywhere you can listen to it. And of course rate it. Leave a comment wherever you’re listening, whether it’s iTunes or Stitcher, and you know, send me a message if there’s any feedback, any questions, anything you like, anything that you’d like to see different or topics you want me to cover, make sure you send me a message.
But all right, for today, episode 56, let’s get into the question.
The one I have for today is why don’t my callbacks answer when I call them for our appointments?
So here’s this scenario and I see this a lot and a lot of times reps, sales reps will point the finger at one thing or another, but the scenario is sales rep sets an appointment, follow up. You know, they’re supposed to call Bob at four o’clock tomorrow, four o’clock comes, they call Bob doesn’t answer.
They call back a little bit later. They call back the next week. Don’t answer. And you know, there’s this pipeline full of unanswered, no response type leads that they’re following up on, sending emails, maybe even sending texts. but just trying to track that person down. It’s not working.
My response, which always shocks a lot of salespeople, and at first they kind of get offended. because if you know me at all, or if you’ve listened to this or, or you’ve, you’ve dealt with me in the past or seen any of the times where I’ve spoken or done training is I, you know, hold people accountable and like to point the, the, the process back to the salesperson as the one who’s triggering a set response.
A lot of salespeople, we’ll look at the leads, not answering the leads, not closing. And they will think that it’s a problem with the leads or the marketing.
They’ll think that the leads aren’t very good. Or these people aren’t very interested. They’re not very qualified. They’re not good leads and you know, it’s not them, it’s the leads, it’s the company, it’s the script, it’s the product, that service, whatever.
In my opinion, if you’re a sales rep, if you’re a sales professional and you’re getting the same type of response over and over again from your prospects, then that’s really a mirror on you and something you’re doing. And this is really deep and I’ll probably cover this next week when I get into the special topic for next week, but on the basic level, if your callbacks are not answering on a regular basis, that is not them.
That is you. And I know again, sounds kind of harsh. A lot of people get a kind of defensive at first. The Ego kicks in. I’ve talked about that a lot, but take the feedback from not from me, not from your manager, but from your prospects.
They are telling you that you’re not building enough value, you’re not creating enough urgency and they don’t see any reason to answer your call. Let me give you a short story for what I mean by this and of course, keep in mind before I go into this story, sales is not life or death for most everybody listening to this, you’re not selling something that’s life and death. If somebody doesn’t buy, they’re going to die. So they better do it right now. Now we want to create that urgency.
However, that doesn’t really exist in the same way. But let’s imagine the scenario where you go to the doctor, you have an issue. The doctor says, I’m going to run some blood work and some tests. I’m going to call you tomorrow at three o’clock with the test results. You’re in pain. Or maybe it’s good news, right?
Maybe your pregnant or your wife is pregnant and you want to know the good news or you’re not sure and you’re, you’re looking for results. It can be positive or negative. Most of the time people go to the doctor because something is wrong or the doctor discover something, they do some blood work and now everyone’s concerned between now and three o’clock tomorrow when the doctor is supposed to call you back, what are you doing and what are you thinking about?
My guess is you’re only thinking about the test results. You’re playing out every single scenario in your mind of how it could go. What they might say might happen if they say x, what might happen if they say why? hopefully most people do this even though they shouldn’t go online and playing web MD doctor and then looking up everything. Then as you know, if you’ve ever done that, all paths lead to some kind of brain tumor or cancer and death.
That’s a dangerous game because that’ll make you lose some sleep. Now the next day, so today’s a day where the doctor’s supposed to call you at three o’clock. What are you thinking about all day? And let me ask you this, especially in this day and age, where is your phone?
Back in the day, you wouldn’t want to leave your home if they were going to call your home phone. Now with cell phones, you know where is your phone going to be and every time your phone rings are you going to look at it and think that maybe it’s the doctor and you want to answer it and that’s leading up to it around three o’clock how are you going to set your day and schedule your time if you’re at work, if you know that the doctor’s supposed to call around three o’clock are you going to be in a meeting?
Are you going to schedule anything important? Are you going to go run errands and forget your phone? Absolutely not. Like literally that phone is going to be glued to you. Your man focus all day is that phone call and until that happens, you probably can’t get anything else done mentally.
When that phone does ring, it’s the most important thing in the world. Nothing else matters. If you’re in a meeting, you’re going to be like, excuse me, I’ve got to take this. This is important, but let me step out now obviously, and I set this up even before I mentioned this story is whatever you’re selling, I’ve sold a lot of different things. It’s not life or death, right?
We’re not calling people like a doctor with test results that could change the path of their whole life. So keep in mind, obviously we don’t have that leverage.
You’re not going to that extreme. This is just sales as much as it feels like, especially to prospects. I mean, I remember being in the mortgage business and it felt like with the realtors I dealt with it. Everything was life or death and everything had to happen and with so much urgency, it was crazy. Even though literally it’s not life and death.
We can’t go to the extreme of what it feels like when a doctor is going to call you or something important or you’re trying to get a job, right? The job you have right now, what was it like? You were on pins and needles waiting for that phone call or that email. And then once you’ve got it, you’re nervous, you’re excited, but literally your life is revolving around that. That is the basics of what you want to create with your prospects.
If your prospects are not answering for your scheduled callbacks, it means either you’re not setting very strong callbacks so you’re not scheduling a good time. You’re leaving it kind of open and vague in a, you know, when should I call you? Oh just call me tomorrow sometime. Okay, I’ll call you tomorrow. You know, that kind of vague week appointment setting.
It could also be that the prospect doesn’t see any reason, any urgency, any value, any pain that you’re trying to solve with that scheduled call back with that appointment with you calling them back. If your calling them back and they don’t answer, they didn’t think it was valuable enough to take the time out of their day or to make that important.
So keep that in mind. Take that feedback from your prospects. And the short answer with that is if your prospects are answering, if you have this as a general trend, again, keep in mind this is not one off.
Like, Hey, I called Bob, it’s four o’clock he didn’t answer, but everyone else did today. That’s fine. But if you had 10 scheduled callbacks today or 20 scheduled callbacks today and nobody answered, or most of them didn’t answer, that’s you. I know it’s harsh.
A lot of sales people don’t like that. But that’s not the leads. It’s not the company. It’s not the weather. It’s not. Maybe it’s a full moon sometimes, but literally most of the time it’s you. And so do something different. And if you want to know what to do different for this, it all comes down to the fundamentals that I covered early on in the podcast.
We’ll make sure to find those episodes where you’re building rapport, trust, empathy, hope, and the urgency. But you’re all tying it into the reason why they want it, why they need it, what problem it solves, or pain it removes or goals it helps them achieve. And when you do that, then they will answer for that callback cause it’s about them and it’s not about you.
All right, hope that helps long in depth. One single answer for one single question. There’s a lot more to could do. Usually I cover this in more detail and I probably will move in forward in another episode, but for now that’s it.
Always remember that everything in life is sales and people will remember the experience you gave them.