Don’t you hate it when a prospect tells you “No” on a sales call or during a meeting?  Not even, “We’ll see.”  Just a flat out, “No!”  One of the best ways to avoid that is to qualify prospects better, before you even get on the phone with them.

That’s exactly why the TimeSlots software was built – to help you automate the scheduling and data gathering process so you can book your calls more efficiently and get the information that you need to close a sale.

What you’ll discover today are the types of questions you should be asking before you get on the phone with your prospect, so that you know that:

  1. They’re a great fit for your offer
  2. They won’t be wasting your time
  3. There’s a reasonable likelihood that they’ll say, “Yes!”
  4. They, in fact, are the decision maker

Just a warning though, these tips might be a little scary if it’s your first time trying to automate your sales calendar.

Get Their Contact Details

Alright – this one is a given…  If you’re going to follow up with someone, then they’re going to give you at least their phone number or email address.

Remember though, we live in a digital age.  You should be collecting Skype ID’s for people outside the US, and maybe Facebook Profiles.  I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to who message primarily on Facebook Messenger.

Plus, with the big messaging push that Facebook’s on and their chatbot integrations, it might be a good idea to have that info sooner than later!

Ask Them Why They’re Booking A Time To Meet

It might be a little counter-intuitive, especially if you have a webinar or a sales funnel that’s working on autopilot, but you want to ask them specifically why they’re setting up a time to talk to you.

We might assume that every call is about what we’re offering, but we’re oftentimes wrong.

I’ve had people schedule a call with me, and then pitch me on their MLM opportunity!  Or, ask for joint venture mailings or partnerships…  I assumed that they wanted to talk about what they signed up for, but nothing could be further from the truth.  They just signed up to get an audience.

Do Some ‘Discovery’

One of the most important questions to ask is about their background.

  • Where are they coming from?
  • What have they tried?
  • What do they want to do?
  • What are they trying to start?
  • What are their roadblocks or challenges?

Armed with this kind of knowledge, you’ll be able to sell more effectively.  You know exactly what they’ve tried and what they want to accomplish, before you even get on the call.

And if you do just a little bit of research on their company or vertical, you’ll be able to jump right into helping them solve their problems on the sales call!

Bonus points if you tie in a survey to segment your audience.  Then, you really know what they’re looking for and you’ll practically know how the call is going to go before you ever pitch them!

Gather Collateral

Most likely, the person who’s scheduling an appointment with you has some ‘collateral’ of some kind.  That might be a website, a Facebook page, a brochure, blueprints…


Make sure to include a question asking about some of those assets, so you can take 2 minutes before a call and find out what they’re all about.

In the past, prospects have submitted HUGE lists of links – we’re talking 40 or 50 URL’s – that they needed help with.  I forget exactly how that call went but I know we spent the majority of time talking about FOCUS :0)

Do Some Future-Pacing

In sales, future-pacing is a big deal.  You want your prospect to see themselves in a world where their problem is already solved, whatever that may be.

So, ask the question!

“If I had a strategy that solved (insert their BIG problem here) for you, what would it be worth to you in terms of (insert some quantifiable metric here – dollars/time/resources)?”

You can ask the dollars and cents question here if you like, but I’d word it a little differently.  If you take money off the table, what’s the big benefits that they’ll be receiving in working with you?

Will they:

  • Save time?
  • Increase quality?
  • Lower refund rates?
  • Add more repeat customers?
  • Get more traffic to their website?
  • Enjoy a more stress free existence?

There are lots of other valuable things we can have them picture in their heads, besides money, costs or investments…  It’s a proven fact that money isn’t quite the motivator that some people think it is.

Dollars And Cents

Finally, we get to it.  The one question that everyone KNOWS should be in a qualification form, yet isn’t sure how to ask…

You’re going to want to ask a ‘Dollars and Cents question’ in your TimeSlots form…  Meaning, you’ll need them to quantify how much they’re willing to spend with you if you can help them solve their problems.

This is the one question that most people leave out, because they’re relying on their sales prowess to close the deal.  It’s also the biggest reason why a lot of sales calls end in a “No.”

The best way to ask the final qualification question is by giving your prospect a choice.

At this time, what investment can you comfortably make in (insert the primary benefit of your product or service here):

Then, let them choose between a few different packages or tiers!

In fact, here’s how I’ve got it worded on one of my TimeSlots questionnaires:

TimeSlots 'Dollars and Cents' Question
TimeSlots ‘Dollars and Cents’ Question

This question alone is going to give you a great idea about whether they’re going to be a good client for you or not!

Then What?

After you get all of this information, now what?

Well, you can call back each and every person and just see what happens…  You can cancel the appointments that don’t seem to fit with they types of prospects you’re looking to call.  Or, you can send the lesser qualified prospects to someone else to try and close!

Either way, you’re able to qualify your prospects a little bit better, devoting time and resources to where it will make the most impact!

And if you haven’t already done so, make sure to try out TimeSlots and start scheduling smarter!