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Succeeding at Telesales


Guest articles > Succeeding at Telesales


by: Niall Devitt


Telesales is different from the face-to-face sale in two ways, there is a much shorter time frame to work in and you only have one means of communication to deliver your message, your voice. It is also worth noting that it is much easier for a prospect to object early so there is strong need to grab attention and involve the prospect very quickly when selling over the phone.


Remember if you are not happy to be calling, the prospect wont be happy that you called so try to get yourself in the right frame on mind and make sure that you sound enthusiastic.

First Impressions Count

First impressions will happen quickly over the phone so the tone and emotion of your voice will have a big influence on the prospect in those initial seconds.


Phone introductions need to be quick and contain only relevant information. i.e. your name, company info, some well known customers, a piece of information to demonstrate that you have done some research on the prospect and something to grab the prospects attention (a reason why they should continue with the call, what’s in this for them).

Asking Questions

Try to ensure that the conversation is flowing both ways. An easy way to achieve this is to ask lots of open questions about the prospect. Gather as much relevant information as you can establish whether there are any existing needs remembering to tailor your pitch accordingly.

Selling Your Product

Only when you have gathered all the relevant info should you attempt to start selling. Communicate where you feel your product will benefit them and how it can positively affect the organisation. If you have done a thorough fact-find you will know the pain-points and benefits that you should now emphasise. Make your pitch as personal as possible and refer back to the earlier answers given to your questions.

Handling Objections

Deal with any objections ensuring that you empathise and qualify each objection before reselling the corresponding benefits making sure you cover additional extras such as quality of customer service and reputation etc.


We know that it can be difficult to get decision makers over the phone so when you do and you have got this far, ensure that you close. It amazes me how good some sales people can be at getting the sale to the point of closing but freeze when it comes to actually closing. Asking prospects to buy products is the definition of what we do so make sure that you close.

Other Factors to Consider

People can be rude so prospects can be rude, its not personal so don’t take it personally. The minority of calls made will lead to sales but it’s this minority that count as regards to target, commissions, promotions etc. As a rule of thumb if the conversation is going one way, that’s not good, if it’s flowing both ways, that’s good. As with all selling, good questioning technique is the best way at achieving this conversation flow. Try to stay away from selling until you have gathered enough information to make the pitch uniquely personal to the prospect.


In my opinion, sticking word for word to a scripted intro rarely is a good idea. Where scripts can be useful is as a guideline to what to say as part of your initial intro but unless you are Colin Farrell or Jodie Foster, use your own words to convey your message. Where the prospect is busy try to secure an agreed time and date where you will call back and ensure that you do. Selling over the phone can seem difficult at first but those who become experts are highly sought and quickly progress up the ranks within organisations.


Niall Devitt is a training consultant and business mentor. With over a decade of experience working as senior sales manager and trainer for some of Ireland’s top companies his expertise lies in creating and implementing performance driven sales programmes. Niall is regularly asked to contribute business articles and his advice has been published through the Irish National Press and broadcast on Radio. Visit his blog on business know-how at

Contributor: Niall Devitt

Published here on: 24-Feb-08

Classification: Sales


MSWord: Succeeding at Telesales.doc

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