What Is Conversational Sales?

Conversational Sales

We have known for a while that leads prefer speaking with sales reps to chatting with bots, but now we have a new spin on that preference. Ninety percent of leads would rather text than call. That’s one reason why conversational sales is so effective. 

What Is Conversational Sales?

Conversational sales is a strategy that takes leads’ preference for one-on-one messaging conversations into account. It focuses on the importance of giving authentic responses to inbound lead questions through their favorite channels—texting and messaging. 

If you adopt this strategy, you will focus on answering leads who connect with you directly through texting or who message you through a popular messaging service, like Facebook Messenger or Google’s Business Messages. (If you use a conversational sales platform, you can receive messages from all of these channels in a single shared inbox.) 

The strategy emphasizes the importance of having authentic, personalized chats with leads. Rather than selling leads on products they may not be ready to buy, you should make it easy for them to ask questions when they’re exploring your products or services, and answer them in the moment. Ultimately, this tactic helps build strong customer relationships. 

Conversational Sales vs. Traditional Sales

Traditional sales is focused on product-centric outbound content. Often, communications are stilted, since leads have to submit questions via forms or bots, then wait for responses. Traditional sales teams also use older communication channels that are more business-centric as opposed to lead-centric. These older communication channels–namely phone calls and emails—are also less personalized. 

Conversational sales addresses these pain points. It:

  • Focuses on inbound as opposed to outbound content, centering activities on leads who are already interested in your products
  • Prioritizes convenient lead communication channels instead of older business technologies, allowing teams to meet leads where they are
  • Emphasizes the importance of hyper-personalization, encouraging teams to use personalized channels (like SMS) and personalize messages with lead information 

Ultimately, conversational sales is a powerful channel for centralizing the lead experience—and helping them make the right purchases for them right when they want to make them. 

When To Use Conversational Sales

Conversational sales is useful throughout the sales process, but works particularly well in key moments:

Handling Objections

This strategy shines during the Handle Objections phase, where leads may be seriously considering purchases, but still have some questions holding them up. Your team can quickly answer their questions, leading them to make purchases faster. This is starkly different from the traditional sales tactic of pushing out outbound info about products when leads might not be ready for it.

Closing Sales and Deals

Conversational sales is also especially relevant during the Close stage, when shoppers now expect to be able to complete their purchases online on their own time. Sales teams can use messaging to learn about and iron out any wrinkles leads experience during that process. 

Upselling and Cross-Selling

Finally, conversational sales works well during the Upsell/Cross-sell phase. Team members can invite existing customers to ask product questions and talk to experts, keeping the rapport going for future purchases and upgrades.

Using Conversational Sales in Your Messaging Strategy

If you text with prospects, there’s a good chance you’re already using some conversational sales techniques. Refining them—and adding more—is a simple process. 

You should:

  • Refrain from sending outbound sales messaging content
  • Focus on replying to leads’ product or service questions
  • Aim for quick response times (you can create auto replies to immediately let leads know when you’ll respond, both during and after hours)
  • Send follow-ups after resolving lead questions

Remember that you want leads to know they’re having a chat with a person, not a bot. Use correct grammar and clear syntax, but maintain a friendly, casual tone. Include lead details if you have them, like their past interests and names. Add emojis or GIFs if that adheres to your brand guidelines, so you can show off your personality and make real connections.

SMS Conversational Sales Templates

So what does conversational sales look like in action? We’ve put together some examples of templates you might use to reply to or follow up with leads. Feel free to use those that you like. 

Hiya, you’ve reached the Simply Healthy Eating team. A team rep will be with you in about 5 minutes. They’re worth the wait! 🍎 Text STOP to stop receiving texts. 

Hi there, thanks for texting in! What Coffee Supply product do you want to learn more about today? —Jean

Thanks for asking! You’re right on target — our Premium Leather shoes come with a mini cleaning kit. Anything else I can help you with? 

Hello {{lead name}}, Tammy from Polly Want a Cracker Bird Supplies here. Did that cage end up working for you? 🐦 Text STOP to unsubscribe. 

Hi {{lead name}} this is the Gift Co team! How did the in-store pickup process work for you? Text STOP to stop receiving texts. 

 

Want to explore more conversational sales content? Check out our blog.  

 

Craig Bradley
Craig Bradley
As a Senior Growth Advisor at Heymarket, Craig Bradley works with businesses across industries to understand their needs and how texting can help solve them. Craig brings a depth of sales experience in telecom and technology, including growing the business development teams at Fond and Eved. When he's not chatting with prospective customers, he’s pursuing his many interests: running, golfing, roller skating, and the Dallas Cowboys.
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