Tips for Leaving the Perfect Sales Voicemail

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Ask almost anyone in sales and they will agree that leaving an effective voicemail that gets a callback is not an easy task. 

Although it may seem like a difficult exercise in futility, the potential reward far outweighs the effort and anxiety.

So, part of any sales strategy worth its salt should include sales voicemail training and tactics.

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How to Leave a Voicemail

There is more to crafting a sales voicemail than simply stating your name, your phone number, and requesting that the potential customer returns your call at his/her convenience.

Knowing how to leave a good voicemail message helps your voicemail stand out from the competition. It leaves your prospects with the impression of a personalized effort to address their specific needs.

The following tips are intended to demonstrate how to leave a sales voicemail that has the best chance of your message actually being listened to by a sales prospect and acted on, in the form of a callback.

1. The Right Message Length

Sales voicemails that get callbacks are neither too short nor too long. Aim for leaving a voicemail message that is between 20 and 30 seconds long.

Thanks to the fact that most phones have Caller ID, if your message is too short, the prospect may assume it is either a wrong number or that the call was not important.

Most people are busy and will not take the time to listen to a long voicemail from an unknown number. Voicemails that are between 20 and 30 seconds long have the best chances of being listened to.

2. Begin Your Voicemail with Information Important to the Prospect

In order for your sales voicemail to be most effective, begin with something other than just stating your name and the name of the company you represent.

If the first thing your prospects hear is something that resembles every other sales-call they receive, you can bet they will delete your message right out of the gate. Try opening with a question that goes beyond a simple yes or no reply, one that addresses a need they may have.

Mention something relevant about the business or website when leaving a message.

It may seem intimidating at first, but you'll never make that sale if you don't leave a message.

3. Pose a Question Directly Intended for That Prospect

Make your question specific to the individual you are leaving the voicemail for. Emails are good for more general questions, while voicemails should address questions that tailor towards that individual prospect's needs. By individualizing your question, you engage the prospect on a one-on-one basis.

4. Take a Non-Traditional Approach to Closing the Voicemail

Leave your prospect with a sense of responsibility or anticipation at the end of your sales voicemail. After asking a thought-provoking question, end your sales call.

5. Always Leave a Voicemail

If your sales call is not picked up, never hang up without leaving a voicemail. Without leaving a voicemail, the prospect has no idea who called them or why. They can't return your call if you don't leave a voicemail.

6. Pay Attention to the Tone of Your Voice

The last thing you want to do is run the risk of alienating a prospect by speaking in an overly enthusiastic, unnatural, 'salesy' tone of voice. Using this type of tone of voice makes prospects feel as if you are merely going through your list of blind cold calls for that day.

Speak in a normal tone of voice. As the voicemail progresses, lower your tone of voice slightly. This projects the image that you are personally speaking to that particular prospect, not one of many.

Tone of voice and cadence is important when leaving a voicemail

Try to be as relaxed and conversational as you can. The tone of your voice can say a lot.

7. Know the Best Time of Day to Leave a Voicemail

Voicemails left near the end of the day stand a better chance of being remembered and returned. Although, personally I like to get out in front of all other calls I'm in competition with. So, early morning has been effective.

8. Try Leaving a 2-Part Voicemail

Another way to stand out from your competition is to leave 2 voicemails, back-to-back. The first voicemail should contain the bulk of your message. The second, shorter voicemail can contain your name and callback information.

9. Slow Down your Speaking Cadence

As your speaking speed slows down, your prospect's comprehension rates go up, as do the odds of receiving a voicemail callback.

Over to you

While there is no guarantee that a prospect will return your sales call, employing these suggestions can increase your chances of successful interaction with a prospect.

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Eric Melillo