Is your message coming across the way you want? Is it coming across as confident as you would like? This is critical as you build a profitable business.
You might look the part, but if you don’t sound the part, that can easily turnoff potential clients.
Successful consultants and freelancers have many discovery calls or sales conversations over their entrepreneurial lifetime. It takes practice; and that means learning to deal with the blow of “no” so that you can get to the “yes” faster.
Getting booked solid comes from being able to convert a discovery call into a sale. Unfortunately, many consultants and freelancers spend more time concentrating on what to say and neglect their nonverbal impact on the phone.
Your potential client on the other end is focusing on three things, none of which begins with what you are saying. First, people listen for confidence, warmth, and competence. These three attributes are delivered through your voice tone, pitch, and cadence.
Here are three ways to increase the effectiveness of your next sales call:
1. Sound confident.
Nothing destroys a sales conversation more than a lack of confidence in your offering. This is easily perceived by your voice pitch.
“You can use pitch to draw the listeners’ attention to words or phrases that are more important than others. When speaking you will naturally use a range of pitches to convey different meanings (Source: Boundless. “Pitch.” Boundless Communications. Boundless, 21 Jul. 2015.)
For instance, when your pitch goes up while sharing the price of your product or service it’ll sound like you’re asking a question and you’ll easily loose your clients confidence or open yourself up for negotiations. Instead, find your lowest natural tone.
Start by taking a deep breath and filling your lungs.
Breath out the air in your lungs .
When you’re down to your last breath say your first name .
That’s your lowest natural tone. Now, practice using that tone when delivering key information regarding your pricing and non-negotiables.
2. Add warmth.
Scrap the sales script. It sounds robotic and creates distance. I understand that it’s easier to turn to a script when you’re on the phone because there’s no visual connection, but as soon as you reach for the script you lose the human element.
The human voice has vocal variety and it’s this variety that creates and maintains authenticity and warmth in your communication. Instead of a script, keep a bank of stories that you can use to highlight the benefits and results of your work in discovery calls or sales conversations.
Neuroscience suggests that decisions are emotional not logical.
For example, this rings true in negotiations, as Jim Camp, founder and CEO of The Camp Negotiation Institute, explains in Big Think: “You help them discover for themselves what feels right and best and most advantageous to them. Their ultimate decision is based on self-interest. That’s emotional.”
So, instead of a sales script, try telling stories to engage vocal variety and activate your clients emotions.
3. Increase competence.
Strike a power pose while you’re on the phone. Harvard researcher Amy Cuddy reveals that specific body positions can change your body chemistry.
The power pose can increase physical feelings of competence to make your voice more credible. When you’re on the phone, plant both of your feet on the ground in a wide stance either hip distance or greater, square your shoulders back and lift your chest up. This is a seated power pose.
Most importantly, remember not to hunch over, or roll your shoulders in. The power pose physically releases hormones in your body to increase your competence. The opposite is true on the low power pose; it increases cortisol, your stress hormone.
Your voice is an underutilized, powerful tool in your discovery calls and sales conversations. To use the full power of your voice and get to “yes” faster apply these three nonverbal tips and go a step further to record yourself and evaluate.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Audrey Joy Kwan
is a business soft skills expert. She helps entrepreneurs raise their influence and make more sales with confidence and results. Audrey helps her clients connect, compel and sell with authenticity using the strategic brain of a Masters Degree in Communications and coaching certification in Advanced Body
Language Training. To get her Epic Guide on First Impressions visit audreyjoykwan.com. Connect with @audj_k on Twitter.