Explore the 1st phase of the calling methodology to reach out MBA aspirants in the previous article, INCREASE THE STUDENT APPLICATION COUNT VIA TELEPHONE CALLS: PRE CALL TACTICS
Once you start reaching out to students, you need to prepare psychologically. The conversation becomes way smooth when you are in a position to assess the behaviour of the aspirant. Here are some things that you need to take care of:
Initiation style matters
Many of us are very blunt in our business dealings, especially when it comes to the marketing a brand. In India, everyone shies away from those irritating calls where the caller directly jumps off to sell his product/brand /college. Instead of getting to the rant of ‘join our college’, greet the person you are calling. Ask if it is a good time to talk. Personalise your call by telling the student about your Name, Designation etc. so that you sound reliable and the student can feel comfortable.
Being courteous is always a must but do not let go of professionalism. The most powerful tools that determine your voice are:
Pace. When panicked, nerves increase the speed with which we speak. Say your first words extra slowly.
Volume. If you’re nervous, your voice tends to get higher. Before you call, lower your voice deliberately.
Tone. Think of yourself as a very important person about to call another important person. Be polite but not overly “sweet.”
Clarity. Mumbling reflects lack of confidence.
Smile. Also, smile when you speak. This will add warmth to your voice.
Don’t interrupt. Try to hold your thoughts, jot them down if necessary while the student is speaking. Continue when there is a natural break in the conversation.
Show Enthusiasm. Keep giving passive comments by using ‘yes’, ‘absolutely , ‘alright’, ‘it is no trouble’, ‘brilliant’ to show that you are listening with interest.
Avoid Disturbances. Its best if you focus at the task at hand and hence avoid moving stuff around or typing simultaneously.
Avoid Call Holding
Unless it is important for the conversation to continue, avoid holding up the phone. And when you do put the call on hold, never do it over 20-20 seconds without offering to call back else the student will lose interest or take you for an amateur. It is impolite to put someone on hold without warning or explanation.
Don’t Badmouth about other B-schools
The biggest mistake one can do is to speak ill of a competing B-school. Research has shown that whenever you back bite about someone else, your audience puts those same traits on you. If you claim that your competitor is unreliable,then your potential client is bound to associate those traits with you too. It is best to shy away from commenting about your competitors.
Know how to close
According to Marketing Donut, 80% of sales require 5 (yes, FIVE) follow up calls. 44% of salespeople quit after just 1 follow up. Don’t be a quitter! Instead of closing the call with a note, “Give me a call if you are interested”, change your follow up strategy and set up an appointment to talk again. For instance, say “ I will give you a call again this Wednesday after you have thought things over” or simply set up a personal appointment! Personalise it. Tell them that they can save your number and call anytime for future reference. This make them feel someone is there to listen to them.
But is reaching out to the student just once sufficient a measure? Do not miss out on the article in its continuation.