Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The telephone is a more helpful sales tool now

The telephone is more helpful now

It has been said that a sales person should try to make all his customer contacts in person. While I agree with this in principle I have found that "the times they are a changing".
Surely, nobody can challenge the phone for shear volume of contacts. We have found that an aggressive sales person can make as many as 125 phone contacts in one day. However, we have also found out that an average outbound tele-marketer will usually average about 70 phone calls a day.

Contrast this with face-to-face visits numbering four to ten per day.... with the norm being closer to the four than the ten. So the phone wins in shear volume. (I remember actually making 12 face-to-face visits one day in Los Angeles but I think that was some kind of record).
Good sales people will tell you that a phone contact is not nearly as valuable as a face-to-face visit. However, the phone contact can be greatly enhanced today with technology.

Technology enhances the telephone
Using a fax-from-PC program such as WinFaxPro, a sales person can create a very nice looking Microsoft Word document and fax it directly from the PC in as little as 45 seconds.... as long as you have a modem and a phone line to the PC.

Further, a GREAT looking html document can be created in Microsoft Front Page with colors and links to graphics for pictures, videos, graphics and logos. This html document can be turned into Stationery in Microsoft Outlook and emailed to a prospect along with PDF format catalogs also in as little as 45 seconds.

Both of these technology tools can be used to enhance a phone call and be completed in under two minutes, making the phone call a much better customer contact than it was years ago.
Many of today's sales managers were brought up years ago when the technology tools like WinFaxPro and Microsoft Outlook did not exist and therefore they tend to shy away from promoting phone contacts. Also, being at home "working" can have many distractions from children and loved ones so it takes a lot of discipline to WORK from home.

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