Cold Calling

5 Voicemail Tips to Increase Conversations with Prospects

Jun 10
min read

Nooks data shows that voicemails increase the chance of a pick up by 25% for the next dial. Use these tips to leave quality messages and drive your call blocks to quota on follow up day.

One of the top priorities for Sales Development Managers is making sure their Sales Rep’s time on the phone is productive. Data enrichment and quality prospecting can help increase connect rates but there’s not a lot of ways to influence whether the other person answers.

But there is one proven method: leaving quality voicemails. 

The Nooks team ran data from over 1.5M dials made by its AI-powered parallel dialer users to see if there’s any correlation between voicemails and likelihood to pick up. Across multiple data sets, numbers that were left a voicemail on the first call were 25% more likely to answer on the next call and 20% more likely to answer by the third, on average.

In this article, we’ll explore five effective ways to leave voicemails on sales calls that increase your chances of connecting with prospects on follow up day. 

1. Keep it Short and Sweet

The people who listen to your voicemail are most likely checking it between tasks or might just read the text previews only. So you have a very short window to let them know who you are and why you’re calling.

Start by introducing yourself, your company and your reason for reaching out. For example: “Hi, this is John Smith from XYZ company. I’m calling because we have a solution that helps leaders like you with (insert value prop) and wanted to see if we can set up time for a demo.” 

The key is to pique their interest but make it very clear why you’re calling so they’re likely to pick up and give you a clear “yes” or “no” when they see your number next time. You don’t need to provide all the details in the voicemail, just a preview to the conversation. 

2. Offer Value

Your prospects are getting multiple calls a week filled with either nonsense or hard pitches that sound something like this:

“Hi John, I’m calling from Company XYZ. We are a San Francisco based Series C software company that specializes in ___, ___, ___.” 

Nobody likes to be pitched and your prospect certainly isn’t interested in hearing about accolades from a company that they’ve never heard of. You can stand out from the noise by making your call about them and using research and personalization to add value to your voicemail in the hook.

3. Use a Hook

The hook of your voicemail is meant to give your listener a reason to remember you and pick up next time they see your call coming in. As mentioned before, company accolades just aren’t going to cut it. There are a few types of hooks you can use, depending on your prospect and the context of your call:

1. Industry insights: Share an interesting statistic or insight that directly relates to the prospect’s business. For example, “We’re working with companies in your vertical that are switching to (solution) to help them save 30% in operational costs.”

2. Success stories: Mention a relevant success story or case study that demonstrates the positive impact of your product or service. “Company X, Y and Z, which are very similar to yours increased revenue by 20% after implementing (solution). Thought it would be worth a chat to see if there’s any alignment.” 

3. Personalization: If you have a personal connection or something in common with the prospect, use it to your advantage. "I noticed you attended [event] recently. I was there too, and I'd love to learn how the week went for you and discuss how our services could complement your goals."

Hooks should be concise, specific, and directly related to the prospect's situation. The more personalized and relevant the hook, the better your chances of getting a callback.

4. Call to Action

An effective voicemail should have a clear and compelling call to action (CTA). The CTA guides the prospect on what to do next and provides them with a reason to call you back. Not using a CTA is like asking your friend to hang out but never actually offering any ideas for a plan. We all know how that turns out.

Your CTA should be action-oriented and create a sense of urgency. For example:

1. Request a Callback: "Please give me a call back at your earliest convenience to set up time and discuss how we can help your business grow."

2. Schedule a Meeting: "Let's set up a quick 15-minute call to explore how our services can benefit your company. I’ll call you back this afternoon to coordinate a time"

3. Pose a Question: "Is your team currently dealing with headaches around (problem)? I have some insights that might help. Call me to share your thoughts."

Including a CTA makes your voicemail more purposeful and increases the likelihood of a response. It provides a clear path for the prospect to engage with you and learn more about what you have to offer.

4. Be Authentic and Enthusiastic 

Authenticity and enthusiasm are contagious. When you sound genuinely interested and excited about what you're offering, it can be a game-changer in sales calls. Remember that people buy from people they like and trust, and these qualities go a long way in building that rapport.

We recently hosted our Nooks Cold Calling Masters competition where we watched some of the best SDRs in the country compete in a cold call meeting race. We watched one of the winning competitors, Chelbea Bart, have conversation after conversation and book meeting after meeting simply with her contagious enthusiasm and confidence. See the recap here

Also, it's crucial to be concise and avoid filler words like "um" and "uh." Practice your voicemail beforehand to ensure you're delivering it smoothly. If you stumble or sound uncertain, it can erode your credibility.

Another key aspect of authenticity is following up when you promise to. If you mention in your voicemail that you'll send additional information or follow up on a specific day, make sure you do so. It will go a long way with the few prospects that are expecting you to call back, and just one or two of those a month could make the difference hit your goal. 

Bonus Tips

While the five strategies mentioned above are crucial for leaving effective voicemails, here are some bonus tips to further enhance your voicemail game:

1. Practice Your Voicemail: Rehearse your voicemail script several times before making the call. This will help you sound confident and natural when delivering it.

2. Use Their Name: If possible, incorporate the prospect's name in your voicemail. Personalization can grab their attention and make them feel more valued.

3. Leave a Backup Contact: Sometimes prospects prefer to reach out in a different way, such as email. Consider leaving your email address as an alternative contact method.

4. Avoid Jargon: Keep your message simple and avoid industry jargon or technical terms that the prospect may not understand.

5. Use parallel dialing and voicemail sequencing: Nooks has multiple tools to help you increase your call volume and leave voicemails at scale. 

In conclusion, leaving voicemails on sales calls is an art that can significantly improve your sales success rate. By keeping your voicemails short, offering value, using hooks, including a clear call to action, and being authentic and enthusiastic, you'll be better equipped to engage with your prospects and increase the likelihood of connecting on your follow up days. Remember that each voicemail is an opportunity to make a positive impression, so make the most of it.

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