One Simple Way to Increase Your Leads by 10%
by Amy Setnicka
If you simply train your receptionist(s) and other staff how to handle inquiry calls correctly, this one thing will dramatically increase your number of leads by 10%-20%. Providers spend so much money on getting the phone to ring but when it finally does, so many of those leads are lost because the receptionist(s) or other staff do not know how to handle an inquiry call properly. As Director of our Mystery Shopping Division at DEI, I witness this way too often.
DEI’s Mystery Shopping Division shares the top 5 mistakes they see communities make call after call.
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TOP FIVE MISTAKES:
1. Receptionist/Marketing Person does not schedule a mutually agreed upon next step with our shoppers. Only about 10% of the time does the provider (sales rep) schedules a next step with our mystery shoppers. So that means about 90% of the time the provider (sales rep) will only offer to send our shoppers a brochure in the mail or casually mention “you should come by and see our community”. With competition the way it is in these economic times every provider vying for the same prospects and inventory high, providers must focus on getting that prospect into their community to meet with them face to face. How does a provider (sales rep) do this? Simply ask the caller for a “next step”. That is a mutually agreed upon next step with a specific date and time.
“Typically, we find that it really helps if you can see what we are talking about. I can be available next Friday at 2:00 if that would be convenient for you?”
2. Receptionist/Marketing Person does not mention their title to the caller. This is confusing for the person calling your community because they don’t know who they are talking to. For all they know it could just be an answering service taking their information so someone can call them back.
3. Receptionist/Marketing Person apologizes for price. This is one of… if not the most common objection in the Senior Housing Industry so provider s (sales reps) must prepare for this.
Instead of apologizing next time try this verbiage:
Caller: “How much is the monthly rent for one of your units?”
Receptionist/Marketing Person: “3200.00/month”
Caller: “Wow! that’s a lot”
Receptionist/Marketing Person: “Last month we had a woman, Marge considering our community and she had that same concern when I spoke with her over the phone but when she visited us and saw how each of our rooms had a beautiful view of the lake she just loved it. So that same day we had one of our financial planners sit down with her and they discovered that what she was spending each month separately on her mortgage, groceries, lawn care etc. was approximately the same as our monthly rent here at Lake View so she decided to move in. We find it really helps if you come in and visit our community, does this Tuesday and 2:00 work for you?”
4. Receptionist/Marketing Person brings up objections before the caller does. For example, many sales representatives say “our one bedroom is 465 square feet, I know that sounds small but the floor plan makes it seem so much bigger.” Just because you think something would be an objection does not mean all prospects see it as an objection. Let the caller speak without being interrupted and try to just listen.
5. Receptionist/Marketing Person ask for the caller’s name but all too often don’t ask for the potential new resident’s name.
It’s the prospect’s situation you are trying to assess as well as determine the caller’s relationship to the entire situation. It will add to the professional tone of the conversation – the sense that you have ‘done this before’ – when you ask for clarification during that first call.
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