Increase Your Win Rates with Better Discovery Calls (Pt. 3)
Increase Your Win Rates with Better Discovery Calls (Part 3)
In part one of our discovery call series, we discussed why these calls are critically important (you can read about it here in case you missed it). In part two we discussed what steps sales reps should take prior to each discovery call to ensure success ( read more here). But how do you conduct successful discovery calls?
How to improve your team’s discovery calls
According to Gartner, a quality pipeline has a 20% or better close rate. So, for every five sales development opportunities created, one should close. This is an industry average that your sales team should be attaining, but why not strive to exceed this? Focusing on continuously improving your sales discovery calls can get you there.
Conducting effective discovery calls, like all other sales skills, requires continuous practice and feedback. This is a worthwhile effort since better discovery calls mean more highly qualified leads and less unqualified leads in the pipeline. As a result, your team spends more time with prospects more likely to close and be happy long-term customers. Doing so means a greater close rate, increased retention, less churn, and higher overall revenue.
Record all discovery calls
It’s impossible for sales leaders to listen to each discovery call in the moment, nor would you want to. There are too many elements to observe, so discussing the call, even immediately after it’s completed, would be confusing at best. That’s why it’s essential to record all discovery calls.
This facilitates reviewing all of these calls, even ones that take place concurrently. It makes it possible to gather data, insights, and analytics to guide deeper analysis of each call while saving time.
Recording discovery calls isn’t only a timesaver that makes it possible to review all calls when most convenient. These recordings also simplify coaching by allowing easy identification and assessment of specific moments based on what a rep is working on improving. They also facilitate self-coaching and peer-to-peer coaching, thereby taking the pressure off the sales leader—spreading the burden of coaching across the entire team and accelerating results.
Elements to review
When new reps start doing discovery calls, you may initially listen to entire calls to ensure all the right elements are included, such as:
- Did they do their homework? This will be evident if the rep is prepared to build rapport and asks questions based on pre-call research. This also allows them to meet prospects where they are in their buying process.
- Are they asking open-ended questions to uncover challenges, budget, authority, timeline, and to determine if the prospect is a good match?
- Are they practicing active listening? This can be determined by checking the talk to listening ratio data on the call. If they are doing this, they are asking clarifying questions to gain deeper insights around the lead’s situation, goals, and concerns. Then they are confirming understanding by paraphrasing what they heard.
- Assess overall results as well with standardized KPIs such as percent of highly qualified leads converted to the next sales meeting and percent of pipeline closed/won.
New reps should listen to recordings of best practice call examples by highly skilled reps on the team before completing their first discovery calls and as they learn. Then you can identify best practice snippets from various calls for new reps to model different parts of their calls once they’ve listened to complete calls for flow and content.
There are data, analytics, and insights for all recorded rep calls, that can further guide reviews to help elevate performance. These include talk to listening ratio, a listening skills assessment, and key moments. These insights are useful for sales leaders and reps alike.
Involve the entire team
Don’t carry the coaching load alone. Get the entire team involved. Have reps mark key moments during calls and share snippets with the coach or a colleague. This increases collaboration across the team and facilitates more coaching without increasing the leader’s workload. Peers coaching peers mean they are learning from each other.
Call recordings also make it possible for team members to review and learn from their own calls. They can identify poorly worded questions or unpleasant word crutches they may be using when there should be silence or a more smoothly spoken sentence. The ability to replay portions of their own calls simplifies tracking their progress as well while working on improving specific elements of the discovery call.
Interested in increasing your team’s productivity and close rates with better discovery calls? Book a demo with a member of our team to see how Jiminny can help you improve sales performance across your team.