To make a good sales call, you must make sure you're talking to the decision maker and understanding where their pain points are. You also need to clarify your product's value, avoid bad-mouthing your competition,  and allow your passion and excitement for your product to come through.

If you're not sure how to make a good sales call, it can feel like this. Imagine you are abandoned and alone in the middle of unknown wilderness. You happen to be an Eagle Scout, so you’re quite adept at finding water, building a shelter, and gathering food. However, the vast jungle that surrounds you presents new obstacles at every turn.


There are certain foods to avoid and a few animals that you shouldn’t even attempt to capture. You meet a group of indigenous people who have all the information regarding specific things to avoid. In fact, they have seen others like you get lost in that very wilderness and make the same mistakes.

Unfortunately, all the advice and insight that the indigenous people provide you falls on deaf ears because the two parties don’t speak the same language. The same thing can happen when you’re trying to close more deals by cold calling. If your sales team doesn’t know how to make a good sales call, a great opportunity could be lost.

Finding Common Ground

A successful sales call takes more than picking up the phone and calling a potential client you think is a good fit. Business leaders navigate their own “corporate jungle” on a day to day basis. On a sales call, an executive is trying to understand how the salesperson’s product or service can help them better navigate their market and gain competitive advantage. All too often, sales professionals are the indigenous people who cannot communicate their knowledge and expertise in a palatable manner. They are immersed in the jungle, and unable to express their insights in a way that makes sense to an outsider.

The business leader at the other end of a sales call is the Eagle Scout. They are experienced and intelligent, looking for resources to thrive in a new environment. Unfortunately, they usually walk away frustrated and feeling misunderstood.  According to Forrester, there is research to support this analogy: only 13% of buyers feel that their sales rep understood their business challenges and asked effective questions that facilitated real discovery and insight.

Before the advent of the internet and information systems, the sales process was much different. Salespeople were necessary for a very important reason. They were the only source of information about the products in the marketplace and their capabilities.

Now, it doesn’t take more than a few minutes and a few key strokes to find all the information you could possibly want about a set of products and what makes them unique. While the decision-making journey for the modern buyer has changed tremendously due to easier access to information, the techniques that salespeople use to do their job have not changed.

When salespeople are bad at their job, executives miss out on an opportunity to discover new knowledge and gain free strategic advice.

An effective salesperson asks insightful questions. The 13% of sales reps that succeed in the buyer’s eyes are knowledgeable about the prospects’ business, and can provide a perspective that an executive may have never even considered before.

Other things tips on how to make a good sales call include:

  • Setting the agenda and staying in control.
  • Avoid bad mouthing your competitors.
  • Clarify your product’s value.
  • Don’t be afraid to get emotional.
  • Stand up to allow your passion and excitement for the product to come through in your sales calls.

You can also do things like using a script that is client-focused

But knowing how to make a good sales call goes beyond good call tips or sales tips. The modern buyer has a lot of options and information about those options. Executives do not need a salesperson to feed them information; they need the salesperson to ask informed, and thought-provoking questions that facilitate genuine discovery of business challenges, and solutions.

Even on cold outreach, a skilled salesperson can help executives look at business challenges from a unique and educated perspective, and discover opportunities for growth previously unseen.

All business leaders should care about the skill level of the modern salesperson because a call with a skilled seller is essentially free consulting.

Knowing how to make a good sales call is only part of the process. It’s important that you learn to improve your call process each time. Customers will warm up to you and trust you, that’s if you’re a master of your craft. Train to be the very best at what you do so customers will see that your solutions are superior and they will lose significant value when they move to another vendor.

It may seem like making calls is a simple task, but it can be difficult. It can also demotivate and exhaust members of your sales staff. However, it can also be the fastest way to build yourself a sales pipeline. And when you master it, it can be tremendously rewarding, lucrative and exciting. If you'd like more information on how to make good sales calls, we've developed a formula that can help. 

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