5 years ago
May 14, 2019

Making a Sales Call? Avoid These 8 Costly Actions

Every sales call is an opportunity to make inroads with a customer. You can build more trust, better understand a customer’s needs, and get one step closer to closing the…

Rhys Metler

Every sales call is an opportunity to make inroads with a customer. You can build more trust, better understand a customer’s needs, and get one step closer to closing the deal. That is, if you take the right approach to your sales calls.

Often, it’s one thing we say or do that can turn a deal sour and many sales reps don’t realize they are making a mistake.

The unfortunate reality is that too many sales reps cut corners, don’t take enough time to properly prepare, and don’t take every call as seriously as they should. The trouble is, your customers take notice, and this can affect how you are perceived by them. Many sales reps portray a stereotypical image of themselves – being aggressive, ill-prepared, and only care about making a sale.

How does this happen?

You are likely making one or more common sales call mistakes. Here we will bring to light some important things to avoid doing on your next sales call:

1. Being Too Pushy

There is a fine line between being firm and being too aggressive. If you come on too strong, you could turn off your customers before you really get the chance to show them how you can assist them. No one wants to feel pressured into doing something, especially making an important purchase decision. Coming on too strong can also make you seem desperate to make a sale and only having your best interests in mind – not something your clients will react to well.

2. Pretend Like You Know Something You Don’t

Fake it until you make it, right? Not so fast. Honesty is extremely important in sales. The minute a customer suspects you aren’t being completely truthful with them, you risk losing their trust.

Most people don’t expect you to know everything. If you don’t have an answer for a customer right away, tell them you will need to do some research and get back to them with a detailed answer. Being a resource for your clients is important and being an honest one is the most important.

3. Calling a Customer the Wrong Name

Calling a customer the wrong name can make them feel disrespected and unimportant. It’s a major faux pas not only in sales but in business in general. Always double check a customer’s name before calling.

Getting a prospect’s name wrong can also signify that you spent very little, if any, time preparing for the call. Top sales reps make each one of their customers feel like they are the most important. Always know with whom you are speaking and have a plan for each call.

4. Calling the Wrong Type of Prospect

Many argue sales is a numbers game. The more calls you make, the more deals you will close. But what if you are not calling the right people? One of the biggest mistakes sales professionals make is spending too much time on the wrong type of customer – the customer who is not interested. Top sales reps don’t waste their time on non-buyers.

Each customer they call are qualified before the first call and when you actually speak to them. If the customer doesn’t meet the right criteria, they move on to the next customer. Spending time trying to convince a customer to buy when they are not ready will not only waste your time, you will also be missing out on that time to speak with prospects who are interested in making a purchase.

5. Multitask During a Sales Call

You need to be completely focused on the task at hand. You can’t spend your sales call trying to multitask. In that given moment, the client to whom you are speaking is the priority, not your emails, messages on your phone or other tasks.

You need to be present, engaged, and actively listen to your client or they could feel like you are not showing them an appropriate level of attention. You could make them feel as though they are unimportant.

6. Cut Off Your Prospect

You may know your sales process like the back of your hand, but one thing you don’t know is what a customer is going to say next. Never assume you know what someone is going to say and cut them off. It can be regarded as disrespectful. Always actively listen to your customers, give them your undivided attention and let them finish their thought. What they say may surprise you.

7. Not Fully Understanding Your Customer’s Pain Points

Top sales reps pay attention to their customers. What they don’t do is try to sell their customers on the features and benefits of their products. In order to truly understand how to sell to a customer, you need to fully understand their pain points. Once you understand what is ailing them, you can then position your products/services as the solution to help them achieve their objective. Remember, it’s not about how good your product is; it’s about how you can help the customer.

8. Not Asking for the Sale

If you don’t ask for the sale, you could be waiting around for a long time before your customers say they are ready to move forward. Asking for the sale is a key part of closing. While you may get turned down, you know where the customer stands. You can then focus on their objections to see if you can find a solution. Asking for the sale can often encourage your customers to make a decision quicker.


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Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 15+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day and tropical vacations.