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Lead Generation Script Or No Lead Generation Script?

Oct 28, 2007
If you've ever been to the theater and witnessed a truly engaging performance, though you may not realize it, you know everything you need to know about how to make a sales lead generation script work for you.

In a successful play, the actors have all memorized every word they say. There is nothing spontaneous in the dialogue; it is all planned out far in advance. However, the performance: the emotion, the interaction, the nuance are all real; it all occurs in the moment. Here are a few ways this applies to your script:

1. The sales lead script provides a structure for the process. You know the questions you are going to ask and (if it's a good script) how you will answer the prospect's questions.

2. The sales lead script provides security - If you memorize your script, you know you will ask the right qualification questions and won't forget to cover something important.

3. The sales lead script provides consistency - Everybody on the team is qualifying sales leads the same way, making it easy to rank leads consistently across the organization

4. The sales lead script provides continuity - Anyone can pick up the sales lead in the next phase and know what has been covered and where to start the next conversation.

Now, if you've ever been to the theater and witnessed a performance that was left wanting, then you understand the pitfalls of using a lead generation script. Here we'll cover the danger zones to watch out for;

The sales lead script is not a crutch - If you let the script serve as an excuse and let yourself get lazy, then your conversation comes off sounding staged. You are not the script, and the script is not the process, it is simply a tool to make the process easier and you more effective.

The sales lead script is not a conversation and unlike acting partners, your sales prospect does not have a script. It is vital to "stay in the moment," as they say on the stage, and listen closely to the prospect. It may require jumping ahead in your script or back-pedaling to clarify a point for the prospect. If you keep plodding along in spite of what your prospect is saying you come off as disingenuous and will fail to connect.

The lead generation script is not "my way." Experienced reps may already have a successful method. The script will have a learning curve that could cause a drop in successes resulting in a loss of morale. Recovery from this slump may be overcome with time, but it might also turn into a long-standing issue that will need to be dealt with. You will have to determine if the consistency and continuity are worth the loss if productivity in the long run.

The script is not an assembly line and you are not a robot. The purpose of the script is not to replace genuine conversation, but to help guide the lead generation conversation to the result as efficiently and comprehensively as possible. You must make sure you are still talking to the prospect and not merely talking at them.

With these guidelines, you can successfully use a script to help create a more effective sales lead generation procedure. You just have to make sure that your script acts as a tool to help your team generate more leads, and not something that binds their hands and puts your lead generation efforts on auto pilot.
About the Author
Al Davidson is the President and Owner of SSM (Strategic Sales & Marketing, Inc. http://www.manageyourleads.com), which he founded in 1989. Under Al's direction SSM provides major account lead generation services. They have implemented new business development programs for thousands of B2B companies.
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