6 Awesome Sales Call Conversation Starters

How a Top Account Executive is Closing Big Deals with Video
Meet the Vidyard Team, Video Style: Steve Johnson
Video tips, tricks, news & how-to’s

One of my favorite things about my team is that we are constantly focused on helping each other do better. After one of us finishes a call that doesn’t progress, someone may say something along the lines of, “Ah man, so close, I could have taken that somewhere!” That’s when we start discussing what happened in the call, and together try to figure out how we could have driven it better.

We do this because we know the struggle is real. Any B2B or SaaS company’s sales team likely battles to either get prospects to pick up, or move pipeline further—or both. The key to success can often be boiled down to good, insightful conversations. Here are 6 tips to help you have conversations that move the needle.

1. Know the person and company on the other end.

Blocking off time to make those dials out and working through cadences is great for SDR and BDR teams. However, there’s a fine line between high activity and good quality activity. Hands up if you’ve frozen up when someone actually picks up the phone after you hit 10 voicemails? That can happen when you get what we like to call “dial crazy”: after countless unfruitful dials, you lose the personal touch when a prospect finally picks up!

Proper research and profiling can help prevent the “dial crazy” syndrome, but reviewing these notes at each touchpoint prior to making the call will truly be the remedy. Ask yourself: “What am I going to say if this person says now is a good time to talk?” Know the company, their particular role, who they might report to, and what they are like as a person. Most of this information can be found in a matter of minutes just by looking at the person’s social media channels, blog posts or news articles, and, of course, the company website.

What we like to do at Vidyard is use tools such as SalesLoft, Marketo, and Vidyard itself, to get a quick snapshot of each prospect’s journey, like what pages they have looked at on the website, which of your videos they have watched, and more.

With Vidyard, we can even discover how much of those videos—including marketing videos on our site, and any videos our own salespeople personalized for the recipient—the prospect watched. Information like this is incredibly valuable; we know most audiences engage with video much more than they engage with any other content type, and being able to track what each person is watching and interested in—or not interested in!—helps us tailor our conversations for success.

We don’t make assumptions based on LinkedIn bios and titles; our salespeople are armed with individualized information about each lead and prospect so we can truly personalize our approach.

2. Keep in mind all past touch points with the prospect.

Another symptom of “dial crazy” syndrome is forgetting that you already left them the same voicemail yesterday. Or realizing you already sent that email template.

Always know what your touchpoints have looked like, what emails they have opened, what particular links and resources they clicked. Tools like SalesLoft or Outreach can be great for keeping track of your activities.

If you want to go the extra mile and really set yourself up for success, you need something a little more. We all know that an “opened” email doesn’t mean it’s a “read” email, and there’s no way to tell how much they paid attention to your message, so you have nothing to help you follow up. If you’re using a powerful video platform like Vidyard, or our free Chrome extension ViewedIt, you can get detailed analytics and notifications (right inside the CRMs you already use!) on when a prospect viewed your videos, what they watched, and for how long, so you can follow up at the best time, with the very best message. What does that lead to? Better engagement, shorter deal cycles, stronger relationships, and higher quality touch points! (Video also has the added bonus of being much more engaging and personal than text, so your prospects will likely absorb more of your message than if you had sent a boring text email!)

3. Don’t sell.

I sell Vidyard, a SaaS platform that helps companies drive revenue through the use of online video. And sometimes, I let “video, video, VIDEO!” take over my thought process instead of thinking about the prospect’s problem, and how—or if—Vidyard can help. About a month ago, I was reviewing a call with my manager in which…