Are you a salesperson?  As anyone that’s ever been in sales can tell you it all breaks down to numbers game in that you need to get prospects into your down line.  In other words , you need to get a hold of your potential customers.  And nowadays every company and pretty much every individual has a voicemail and the odds are that 90% or more of your calls end up with voicemail or an answering machine.  What does this mean for the sales rep – it can be very hard at times, or at least it appears to be and I’m going to tell you how to get around this in just a second, to get a hold of your potential or even regular customers.

As a salesperson if you can’t get a hold of your customers you’re just sitting there spinning your wheels going from called the call marking people as not available, can’t get through gatekeeper, etc.  for sales managers this can be quite a bothersome task because they have to follow up on numerous sales reps and some of the sales reps will be telling the truth that they’ve had a hard time getting a hold of their prospects.  Whereas other lazier sales reps will look at this as an opportunity to mark someone as not available because they just don’t want to talk to them – if that’s you then you need to get out of the sales game because you’re giving up probably 75% of your income.

So, if it is so important to get a hold of these potential customers, and yes it is, then how do we make it so that our phone calls to these people when we reach a voicemail are more fruitful?  How do we make it so that people actually call us back after we leave a message?  How do we make it so a large percentage of them call us back, remember us by name, and think positively about us and our company and our products?

We can control whether or not someone is going to be sending all their calls to voicemail, but what we can control is how they think of us and how they remember us and whether or not they’re going to call us back.  Instead of leaving the typical reply:

“This is Joe Schmoe from ABC Sales Company and please call me back when you at your earliest convenience. Thanks and have a great day.”

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Why not do something interesting?  Why not take a moment and leave a quick question that is something interesting but that most people don’t know about their industry?  This will show that you have knowledge that other people don’t have and that will make you stand out from your peers.  It will also spurn the interest of the person you’re calling and make them want to know or find out what the answer to that question is.

This is where it would benefit you to do a little research in your industry and have about 20 to 30 great trivia questions ready for when you call your prospects.  You don’t have to give each prospect a different question.  You can give all the same ones you’re calling the same day the same question and that makes it easier on you because it is the same answer for all those questions for that day.

So instead of the typical message that most sales reps leave, try one like this:

“Hi this is Joe schmo from ABC Sales Company.  Did you know what percentage of people in your industry do x, y and z?  Call me back at (704)546-XXXX for the answer.”

It doesn’t have to be something hard or something earth shattering and importance of of like recent news or events.  This is a simple message and you don’t want to take up the prospects entire voicemail to leave it.  You just want something short and sweet and watch what happens.  It is a proven fact that over 50% of the people when called and left a voicemail message in this manner return these calls. What’s even more interesting than that is that these same people have a much higher trust association with the sales rep simply because of this little technique.

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Now when it comes to sales, you not only have one factor working for you here you actually have two.  One is that the prospect has a much more likelihood of returning your phone calls.  The other one is an added benefit – your trust ratio is much higher.  If you do this simple technique and it doesn’t take much effort to really incorporate it into your daily routine – you will tremendously increase the amount of callbacks that you get, the amount of sales that you make and the amount of money you earn at the end of the month and the end of the year.

So, what are you waiting for?  Put this simple technique to work for you.  Look up your industry or your prospects industry and make a list of trivia questions which look interesting.  Have this list next to you anytime you are calling customers or prospects and anytime you encounter voicemail, leave a reply with a trivia question.  Make sure you say to get the answer call me back at and then your number.  More prospects will call you back.  They will also remember you better and have a higher trust value associated with you – all really good things when it come to sales.

Good luck with your sales and remember to always thank the one who made everything happen – God.

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