Setting Your Team Up for Success - How to Make Successful Sales Calls

As popular as emails are for B2B communications, an enormous amount of business is still happening over the phone. Sales calls (including both phone and video call) specifically play a vital role in the B2B and SaaS buying process, ranging from cold calls, to booked demos, to ongoing communications to customize and close deals.

There truly is an art to a great sales call, but it’s also like a science, too. And in order to increase your win rate and close more deals, striking the balance between art and science and having the right tools, training, and resources in place can make a world of difference.

So, in this post, we will look at how you can set your team up for more wins by discussing how to make successful sales calls.

Know What a Sales Call Should Accomplish

I know we’ve got a lot of readers seeing this headline and thinking “sales calls should accomplish sales.” That’s true. Sales are always the end goal.

That being said, you’re never going to actually drive many sales if you’re focused on trying to pigeon-hole customers into a specific product or plan right from the beginning and you start acting like you only want a commission.

Sales calls should, first and foremost, accomplish the following:

  • Relationship building between you and the client. Some small talk may seem to take up time, but it can build trust and rapport that’s invaluable. If people like you and trust you, they’ll want to do business with you.
  • Listening to what’s being said. This sounds obvious (and we’ll talk more about it throughout the post), but too many sales people fail to listen. Listen for a client’s sales objections, their needs, and their concerns. You can use this to present the right products or overcome objections in an authentic way.
  • Present products as solutions. You don’t just want to sell someone on how great your product is; your marketing team has already done that. They need to hear how your product can solve their specific problem.
  • Offer next steps. Sometimes customers will be ready to purchase right away, and you can tell them what next steps for contracts and/or onboarding looks like. Sometimes, though, it means getting them signed up for a free trial, booking a follow-up call, or sending over resources. Knowing when to ask for the sale and close is important, but it’s also good to take whatever next step the customer is ready for.

Know Who You’re Selling To & How

In order to be successful with a sales call, you need to understand who you’re selling to and what messaging you’re going to be using.

This doesn’t mean you need to stick to a script (though scripts can be helpful starting points), but it means you need to understand your ideal customer profile (ICP) and common needs, pain points, and motivations.

Make sure your sales team understands what buyer personas you’re most likely to send them. You can use our free persona template to map out your different audience segments and give your sales team something concrete and easy to understand.


Once you do this, it’s also important to determine what product messaging will be most effective. We’ve got a free product messaging template, too, for this exact purpose. This template will help you define exactly what messaging you want to use and how your sales team should position your products.


Keep in mind that consistency is important. Every lead won’t fit neatly into a persona, but having personas and product messaging in place acts as a strong guide that offers consistency to the user experience and some predictability for your sales team. Both can increase the success of sales calls.

Invest in Competitive Intelligence

Your product and your team does not exist in a standalone bubble. You might have an extraordinary social media management SaaS tool that can meet all of your customers’ needs… but so do ten other companies, each with similar offerings.

Helping customers to realize that your product best meets their needs compared to the competition is a crucial part of the sales process. This means investing in competitive intelligence.

You should understand:

  • What your direct and indirector competitors offer
  • How your unique selling proposition is different from the competition
  • What advantages you have (price, features, customer service, etc.)
  • What the competitor’s selling and marketing strategies are, when possible

Collect all of this information. In addition to doing detailed competitive analysis, make sure that you’re also asking existing customers why they chose to work with you instead of other competitors— that’s invaluable information you can focus on during future selling calls.

Once you have this information, create sales battle cards for your sales team. These battle cards should have all of the above information, comparing your business to competitors. It helps them to stay familiar with the competitors and their strategies so they can focus on selling your brand’s strongest assets.

Competitive intelligence data should be updated at least once every quarter, and your sales team should be asked to review them regularly.

Audit & Develop Your Sales Content

A crucial part of sales enablement is ensuring that your sales team has the resources and content they need to do their job well.

This content may include:

  • Product pricing
  • Case studies
  • Sales sheets
  • Pitch decks
  • Product guides and education materials

You’ll often need content for various stages of the sales funnel, along with content for different industries, use cases, and personas.

Conduct a full sales content audit to see what you have, what you need, and what content needs to be updated. It’s possible that some content was never updated after a rebrand, or that you may have some sales content that needs to have its own unique version for different audience segments.


Choose the Right Sales Tech Stack

A vital part of sales enablement is choosing the right sales enablement tools.

In many cases, your sales team will need the following tools:

  • A CRM that tracks all user interactions, purchase history, and touchpoints
  • Lead scoring software to help your sales team identify high-value leads
  • Call-monitoring software to better understand how sales calls are going (and where they can be improved); ideally, this software should have sentiment analysis and keyword tracking
  • Invoicing and/or contract-signing software
  • Content management software like Content Camel (pictured below) that will help your sales team store, organize, review, access, and request all sales and marketing content available


In addition to choosing the right sales tech stack, it’s imperative that you train your team on how to use it. The right processes and tech together will help your team like few other strategies will. You can learn more about finding the right tools in our Sales Enablement Tools Buyer’s Guide.

Create a Sales Call Script

Sales call scripts can have pros and cons.

They’re useful when used as guiding tools because they can be used to train your sales team. Some team members prefer to have a reference for how a call should go, and having scripts in place gives them all the common talking points right off the bat. If scripts are written by sales managers— and optimized or altered as needed— they’re a great starting point.

You do want to be careful, however. Too-stiff scripts (and sticking to them religiously) can also hinder your team. I’ve personally seen sales people try to redirect conversions to get “back on script” instead of following the conversation where it needed to go. Scripts are almost better left to working like role play as practice and giving you key phrases that can be used at key points of the conversation, like when you’re ready to ask for the sale. No one should use them as a crutch.

Training is a big part of this. Train your staff with the sales scripts, and let your team members work on modifying their own as they see fit (within certain guidelines). In many cases, scripts should include the following:

  • An example of how a standard sales call should go for each audience persona
  • An introduction
  • Questions to ask the client
  • Examples of how to overcome specific, commonly-had objections
  • Closing the sale

Scripts should be available for different sales purposes, including:

  • Cold calls, if relevant
  • Demos
  • Customizing contracts
  • New leads
  • Upselling/cross-selling
  • Ongoing retention/feedback from account managers

Make sure that all of these scripts are readily available for your team at all times. Having them clearly labeled in a content management system like Content Camel is a good choice so they can pull up the script at a moment’s notice if needed.

Clearly Define Goals & Expectations

Everyone knows that your sales team’s goal is to sell. That’s the ultimate goal.

But do many times, the goals and expectations are more complex than that. You may have goals like the following:

  • Converting more higher-level/higher-cost deals
  • Selling to certain types of audiences (like enterprise-grade clients over smaller businesses)
  • Closing certain types of contracts
  • Having a certain number of leads in the pipeline at any point in time
  • Amount of deals closed, or amount of revenue closed per month
  • Certain number of upsells or cross-sells per month
  • Maintaining existing contracts

It’s essential to clearly define your goals and expectations. That way your sales team understands what they need to be focusing on, and it can help motivate them. Explain how performance will be measured (including what KPIs will be reviewed) and what it means for them.

If they surpass expectations, are they up for bonuses or extra commission? And if they fall beneath the quotas, what happens?

Make sure that the goals and expectations are realistic both short-term and long-term for individuals and the team overall. Allow your sales team to give feedback and ask for help if needed.

Provide Regular & Thorough Training

Training is the key to enabling your team to make successful sales calls. Without proper training, they’ll be left to figure out everything from how to close deals to what types of deals you can offer on their own.

Training should include educating your team on:

  • The messaging that you’ve developed and the branded language you want them to use
  • Everything they need to know about the product, including what’s currently in the works
  • The target audience segments you’re focused on
  • What’s happening with the competition
  • The standard lead-to-customer journey and what to expect
  • Tips for selling to customers and helping them buy
  • Tips for how to “ask for a sale” and close on a deal
  • How to identify selling— including upselling and cross-selling— opportunities
  • How to use the tech stack available to them
  • What resources and content are available and how to use them
  • How to overcome common objections

Regular, ongoing training is imperative. The following strategies are useful:

  • Role-playing. Speaking from experience, it feels silly, but it’s helpful. Team members should practice making calls with each other and role-playing different scenarios. It builds confidence, but it also provides opportunities for management and team members to share tips and tricks while providing positive feedback.
  • Brainstorming sessions. Gather your sales team and have a brainstorming session, whether it’s about “resources that could help the team” or “how to overcome these new objections we keep hearing.”
  • Reviewing any new changes. This includes changes in pricing, policy, or product, but it is also relevant for changes in the market— including new competitors.
  • Provide written documentation, videos, and in-person training when possible. People do learn differently, so having training that accounts for different types of learners can be vital.
  • One-on-one training. Have your manager or team lead meet with individual team members regularly. Find out what they need help with, and review sales call recordings if necessary to offer suggestions for improvements.

Collect & Analyze Feedback

You’ll want to build a feedback mechanism as soon as possible so that your sales team can get the help they need when they need it.

This feedback structure should include:

  • Open lines of communication between sales team and their manager(s)
  • A documented review process that assesses team members’ performance and review opportunities for improvement
  • The option to request help, support, and/or training when needed by the sales team
  • Feedback from the sales team to managers as needed

Everyone needs to know what’s working and what’s not. You may discover that your sales taem is struggling because their sales tech stack is working against them, for example, or because they’re not getting the right kinds of leads.

Avoid the Common Pitfalls

As someone who worked in sales for a year and a half (and who has been on the receiving end of a large number of SaaS and B2B calls afterwards), I’ve seen plenty of common pitfalls that can cause a potential sale to go sideways.

These are the pitfalls that you should make sure you’re avoiding:

  • Putting so much pressure on your team they become less functional. If your sales team is constantly worried about their job, they’re going to start pressuring leads into sales out of desperation. They’ll close fewer deals, and everyone will be unhappy.
  • Saying it’s “their choice” for how to handle leads but then being hyper-critical. If you want to have your sales team follow strict guidelines about what’s discussed, how your product’s features are promoted, or what they can say about competitors, that’s fine— but make sure they know them upfront. Some bosses prefer to “set their team lose” and then become hyper-critical of standards that were never discussed.
  • Choosing software, strategies, or practices without input from the sales team. Sometimes executives or business owners will make an “executive decision” and end up choosing software or implementing policies that make it harder for the sales team to do their jobs; getting feedback can prevent this
  • Getting single-minded about results. You may want to prioritize the number of new clients, or the average value of different clients. It’s okay to steer your sales team in one direction or the other, but make sure you’re not minimizing anyone’s efforts; sometimes, it’s luck of the draw who gets what leads.
  • Only communicating with sales. Your marketing and product teams need to be aligned with sales, too. Everyone needs to be on the same page to get the right types of leads, resources, and features that sales needs to close more deals.

Final Thoughts

While the best way to have successful sales calls is to have strong, charismatic sales team members on one side of the phone, you need to make sure that your team has everything they need to get the job done. Even newer and less-experiences sales team members can be wildly successful and surpass their quotas with the right resources, tools, and training.

Above all else, make sure that your team has everything they need at the drop of the hat. This includes access to training and sales materials for quick review whenever they need them, which is why Content Camel has become a vital part of our clients’ sales enablement strategies. When all the training materials, sales documents, and even marketing resources are right there at your fingertips, the sales team’s job becomes much easier.

Ready to support your sales team with everything they need? Sign up for Content Camel free here!