Our clients think of us as the phone etiquette experts. After years of handling calls with a myriad of customers, we’ve discovered the keys to being professional, polite, and positive on the phone. This is part of our Phone Etiquette 101 series where we cover topics and common scenarios where the proper phone etiquette may be in question.
Upselling without being pushy on the phone means striking a delicate balance with your customer. Using only verbal cues, that can be difficult to do. We are going to show you how upselling without being pushy is possible – and how you can do it with panache.
Phone Etiquette 101: Upselling Without Being Pushy
Selling over the phone requires special consideration and a careful approach. In person, people usually feel socially ‘required’ to at least hear your pitch or offer their reason for not being interested. Over the phone, a prospect can easily say no or hang up if they’re not interested without having to offer a reason why or even listen to your pitch.
To score the most sales and have the most success with upselling on the phone, you have to learn how to be persuasive without being pushy. You have just a few seconds to grab your prospect’s interest before they tune you out and decide they’re disinterested, so it’s important to make the most of those seconds.
One way you can get your foot in the door and go for the upsell is to make your prospects feel special by creating the illusion of scarcity.
Special means scarce, scarce means valuable
Getting a customer to purchase more than they set out to is going to require some tried-and-true upselling techniques. One of our favorites is using scarcity to create value. You can do this by letting your customer know that they are part of an exclusive group when introducing an upsell product or service.
Example: “By the way, I wanted to let you know – customers who have been with us for 1 year or more are eligible to try our Pro service at a 50% discount for 6 months.”
Sharing secrets earns you clients
Starting friendships and earning clients are quite similar in theory. The same actions that create intimacy and build trust and closeness in friendships apply to earning clients as well. One act that has solidified friendships and business relationships throughout history is sharing secrets.
Whether they’re trade or industry secrets, company success secrets, or even glimpses of failures and lessons learned, sharing secrets fosters a deeper connection between two people or entities and opens the door for you to make a sale. Telling a prospect a beneficial promotion or item “just between you two” can create a sense of importance and urgency, two things that are essential in upselling on the phone.
Example: “We’ve had dozens of clients swear by a toll-free number for increasing both online and phone sales – it’s only $9.99/month as an add-on to your plan and makes your brand look so much more professional.”
Read between the lines
Your prospect is telling you more than their words are saying when you’re on the phone – you just have to know how to listen. If you can get your prospect to talk to you in detail about a problem they’re having, you can find ways to build a package or upsell an item or service that will solve those problems for them. You can’t do that unless you’re dedicating most of your time to listening, not actively selling.
Once you’ve got the information you need about your prospects’ challenges and problems, you can switch to the role of actively selling without being pushy. Now that you know precisely what they need, it won’t seem pushy when you offer a tailor-made solution.
Phone etiquette involves paying careful attention to social rules and norms while interacting with callers, and so does upselling without being pushy. Professional phone etiquette skills are essential for business owners, managers, and employees to possess. If you’re not happy with the phone etiquette skills of your team, consider giving a virtual receptionist a try free for 30 days!