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THE SCIENCE OF THE SCRIPT: The First 20 Seconds

Posted by Ricardo Garcia-Amaya
on Jan 13, 2016 3:16:29 PM

At the heart of a successful call is the perfect script. A great sales script will shape the way customers perceive your business and brand. Aaron Ross, the author of the sales best-seller “Predictable Revenue” said it best: “The script…by far is the most predictable and controllable source of creating new pipeline, but it takes focus and expertise to do it well.”

Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing our first 3-part blog series on script building that includes our best practices on making script writing a true “science”:

  • The First 20 Seconds
  • Handling “The Interrupters” and “The Listeners”
  • Language That's Straight to the Point


The First 20 Seconds

VOIQ THE SCIENCE OF THE SCRIPT: The First 20 Seconds

The first 20 seconds of your opening are crucial and will set the tone for the call. They are broken down into two parts: the introduction and the approach.


Introduction: Starting Strong

The introduction is essential to the call since the preparation, tone, manner, and words used by the agent will set the course of the call. To best prepare call agents, provide them with a strong, short greeting.

Here is an example of a great intro:

“Hi John, I found your property online and I wanted to help you get more rentals.”

Here, you can grab the contact’s attention by stating how you got their information, and what the purpose of your call is. Call agents are able to quickly engage the contact and control the call with confidence.

Approach: Taking Control

A perfect approach will address the fears that your customers may face upon receiving a cold call.

Some examples of a customer’s potential fears are:

  • “Why is this agent calling me?”
  • “Am I wasting my time with this call?”
  • What’s the catch?”

A call script must equip the agents with the necessary tools to address these fears and get through the calls efficiently, effectively, and with great results. 

Avoid terms that relinquish control of the call, such as:

  • “May I speak to Mr. Williams?”
  • “My name is John Smith”
  • “Can I speak with you for a few minutes?”
  • “Would you be interested in...?”

Here is an example of an opening that fails to control the call:

“May I speak to Mr. Williams?...My name is John Smith, can I speak to you for a few minutes?...Would you be interested in our heating/air conditioning for your home?...”

Instead, use phrases such as:

  • "Good evening, I need to speak with Mr. Williams please.”
  • This is John Smith”
  • "I appreciate you taking my call today" or "thank you for taking my call"
  • I’m calling to save you money on the cost of heating/air conditioning for your home."

Here is an example of an opening that controls the call:

“Good evening, I need to speak with Mr. Williams please...This is John Smith, I appreciate you taking my call today. I’m calling to save you money on the cost of heating/air conditioning for your home."

A strong, well-written script with an attention-grabbing opening and an approach that gives control to the agent will increase the odds of an effective call. The first 20 seconds will make it or break it, and following the best practices we outline above will give your script the highest chance of success.

Happy calling and look out for our next blog in the script-building series!


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Topics: Outbound Calling, Lead Generation

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