Lately, I have been listening to voicemail messages left by salespeople, and I have to say, I’m not surprised prospects don’t return their calls. Few, if any, of their messages were effective.
Here are three reasons prospects aren’t returning your calls:
- Message length. Most of the voicemail messages I listened to were far too long. Some of them lasted more than a minute, which is way too long. Decision-makers will delete a message in less than 10 seconds if they sense it is not important. That means you need to capture their attention in those few scant seconds.
- Wrong focus. Most voicemails focused on the seller’s company, product or service. This is the equivalent of “showing up and throwing up.” A more effective approach is to identify a problem your prospects may be facing and allude to a solution. Or, ask a question to stimulate their thinking.
- No compelling reason. The voicemails I heard failed to present a reason prospects should return their calls. Prospects are exceptionally busy. They don’t have time to return sales calls — unless, of course, you can give them a compelling reason to do so. (See #2.)
For better results, consider these three ideas:
- Be brief. Limit your voice message to less than 30 seconds; 20 seconds is ideal.
- Focus on value. Create a powerful and compelling value statement.
- Pose a question. Ask a high-value question relating to a problem your prospects might be facing.
You may not get a return call from every prospect, but if you follow these guidelines, your callback rate should improve significantly.