What is a sales discovery call?
A discovery call’s goal is to either qualify a prospect (discover a sales opportunity) or disqualify them so that no more time is wasted.
If you don’t bother to find out what your prospects need and instead continue to sell them your products and services — and if you don’t practise closing qualified prospects on the phone — you’re wasting both your time and theirs.
Of course, once you’ve done that, you should work on closing the sale (or moving the sale forward) before hanging up the phone.
However, time spent on unqualified prospects adds up quickly, so it’s worth learning how to conduct a discovery call properly. Here’s what you should know.
How do you get ready for a sales discovery call process?
A typical discovery call has the following basic structure:
You’ll need to know enough about each prospect to hit the ground running and be as productive as possible during your discovery call together. Even if a prospect expresses interest but never schedules a call, learning a little bit about them can help you rule them out as future prospects.
Sales Call Planning stages:
1. Do Some Research Homework
Before you call the lead, research them and their company. learn more about their job roles, industry, and pain point.
The first step is to look them up on LinkedIn and learn more about what they’re about, including any current projects they’re working on.
The prospect’s profile will most likely contain all of the information you require. For example, if you’re a leadership coach looking for new clients, you should pay attention to whether your prospect is in a position of leadership or is taking on a new role.
If they don’t have a LinkedIn profile, conduct a Google search for them. It’s always a good idea to look at their personal website and what they’ve been up to in the last 3-5 years.
Before making the call, make certain that your lead is qualified. Discovery is the process of determining whether a lead is a good fit for your product or service. But in order for that to happen, you must first define your ideal customer.
2. Make A Strategy
Segment your discovery call questions. To maintain a chronological flow in your conversation, segment your questions based on the introduction, qualification, disqualification, and next action items.
Prepare some insights. Investigate and collect relevant industry insights to share with your prospects. Consider case studies, industry reports, and the like.
Demonstrate the worth of your product. Discovery calls are your initial conversation with your lead. However, it can also serve as a platform for demonstrating the worth of your product. Demonstrate how your solution can alleviate your prospect’s pain points and assist them in achieving their objectives.
3. Quickly Establish Rapport and listen more
The most important aspect of any discovery call is that you are approachable. Have the mindset that even if you don’t make a sale, there’s still a chance you can find common ground and collaborate in the future.
Prospecting is not a perfect tool if you want to close every person you talk to.
You’ll get a lot of calls from people who aren’t a good fit. Discovery is as much about weeding out bad fits as it is about closing a good fit. During this process, you will find the ideal customers.
As a sales representative, you should ask yourself, “Will our collaboration truly benefit them as a customer?”
After establishing some rapport, you should move on to the purpose of the call. But keep in mind that you must maintain rapport in order to be personable enough to keep the conversation light.
Pro tips: Make your call actionable by using isLucid, and don’t forget any important details. Transfer information easily to your CRM and task management platforms. Keep track of the talk time, the number of questions asked, and the total number of calls made.
4. Ask the Right Questions and Listen
Here are some points on how to have an effective conversation:
Ask open-ended questions. This will enable your prospects to elaborate on their responses. Encourage them to expand on their one-word responses by using statements like “Tell me more about something.”
Listen with care. According to studies, 69 percent of buyers cited “listening to my needs” as the most important thing a sales representative should do to improve the overall sales experience.
A great impression can be made by attentively listening to your prospect, validating their emotions, and providing a situation-appropriate response.
Ask for feedback. Ask your leads for feedback and if they have any follow-up questions. This is an opportunity to clarify any remaining questions or misunderstandings.
Be gentle with yourself. Sometimes, despite your preparations, things may not go as planned. And that’s fine. Consider it a valuable learning opportunity.
Take notes during the call. It is critical to take notes during these calls. It enables you and your team to refer to these notes as the lead moves through the sales funnel.
Pro tip: Use isLucid to record and transcribe your phone calls. When you automate note-taking, you can concentrate entirely on engaging in conversations.
What questions do you ask during a sales discovery call?
Questions on the discovery call qualify a prospect for your product or service. As a general rule, keep them open-ended. Examine your prospect’s needs, processes, goals, and challenges.
These questions are classified into four categories: introduction, qualification, disqualification, and next step.
Introduction questions: All of your pre-call research is validated during this stage-setting phase. It’s also a time to learn about the lead’s pain points and gather all the information you need to move forward.
- Tell me about your business.
- What is your role, and what do you do on a daily basis?
- What are your key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics?
Qualification questions: Following this brief introduction and some insights into your prospect’s roles, it’s time to learn about their pain points. Use these questions to learn about the prospects’ issues and to qualify them based on their responses.
- What are your goals and timeline?
- What issue are you attempting to resolve?
- 6. How critical is it for you to solve this problem as soon as possible?
- 7. Do you require a product or service to solve the problem?
Disqualification questions: Then, from budgeting to scheduling, ask all the questions that reveal the decision-making process to see if the prospect is a good fit.
- What are your main challenges?
- What does a good outcome look like?
- What is the estimated budget?
Next steps in the discovery call: Finally, ask questions to advance the leads through the sales pipeline. Pose questions about the next steps.
- Have you previously purchased a similar solution?
- How will things improve once you implement this solution?
- When would be a good time to follow up with you?
How to close the deal?
Sales expertise is required. It takes awareness to recognise when there is no sale and when to stop pursuing a prospect. It takes awareness, however, to recognise when a prospect is making excuses for themselves and how to turn a No into a Yes.
On the other hand, if I reach out to someone personally because I want to work with them and know they are my target customer, I’ll use every trick in my arsenal to overcome their objections and get that phone call.
You must make decisions all the time.
Add to that the fact that persuasion skills are required once you make the first phone call, and the situation can become complicated.
The golden rule is that you should only try to close the sale if you and your prospect are both convinced that working together will be beneficial.
You’ve established some rapport, and trust is growing. We now need to get a Yes.
That is why having a clear discovery process is critical. It is not necessary to always land a large customer. It’s all about consistency and gradually increasing the number of “yes” you get.
Inquire with the prospect if you have anything they’d like to have/do with you. Their response will be telling. Remember that you’re all in this together. And that should be reflected in every word spoken.
If you don’t want to be too direct, offer to send details about the next steps via email and specify when you will contact them again. Then, while you’re still on the phone, schedule a follow-up call.
If you get the next call scheduled, it shows that this prospect is very interested, and you can give them more attention in the final stages of the sales process.
If you get a “yes, but later,” add them to your pipeline and follow up later. These will continue to grow until you can use your pipeline to close customers whenever you want.
Use tools to increase the success
Utilize tools to make your calls more productive. islucid can help you have better calls through features such as real-time transcriptions that allow you to annotate meeting minutes, send information about your leads to your CRM, and create tasks for yourself. Information was written down right away and without bias. No need to take notes as isLucid does that for you as you speak. Instantly prepared summaries, stored tasks, and important information. Saved time and accurate information captured so you could close more deals.
If you want to manage your meeting information effectively, get isLucid for MS Teams: isLucid Download Page
You can also book a demo and get a walkthrough: Book a Demo.