The Five Stages of a Successful Call
1. The Personal Intro - Your architect contact answers. Keep it short, friendly and cheerful.
“Good morning, James! I wonder if you could help me for a moment? I’m ____________ of XXX Builders, close to you in ____________. Like yourselves, we specialise in good quality residential work. I was very interested to look at your website just now.”
2. The reason I’m calling – the job in mind.
“I wondered if I could ask your advice about the proposed new-build house on Western Road in Keston? It’s the type of work we specialise in, and I’d really appreciate your help on this one in terms of progress.”
3. The benefits we have to offer – which we’ve hinted at in the first two stages. But as the conversation continues we can perhaps add more detail here. Again – not a long spiel – just a few seconds, but make it count. Ask the question, then answer it: What value can we add here?
“Keston is within very easy reach – just half an hour from the office and we have a number of trades who live close to this site. Or – I was very interested to look at the Design & Access Statement on the planning portal – it’s very similar to several other houses we built recently – may be worth my forwarding the case studies over to you?”
4. Listen – Make sure you listen and write down what you hear. You need to put some of this in the email you’re going to be sending to the architect after your call.
Get the other person to talk about their project and whatinterests them. You’ll be surprised how much some people will tell you. Get the other person talking, and listen. My old boss used to say – You have two ears and one mouth – use them in that proportion!
5. Ask good questions – As a sales person, you’re looking to get your company in the hat for the project that’s caught your eye. But your call is also information gathering. What you find out will inform your follow up calls and when to make them. You’re looking for the names of any other decision makers you might need to contact. And with a view to the future, you might get advance notice of upcoming projects and get in early.
Here are some important questions to drop into the conversation.
- What’s the current stage at planning?
- Is it likely to go to tender?
- Who might assemble the tender list?
- What’s the budget value?
- Is there a QS appointment? If so – who?
- We’re interested - when should I call you back on this one?
- By the way – any other projects that may tender soon?
- Check their email address and spelling of their name