The Ultimate Guide to Sales Scripts (With Examples)

Many salespeople believe they won’t sound good if they read from a sales script. While I agree you should never read from a script when selling, a sales script can greatly improve your results by preparing you with the best questions and lines to say and ask.

Here, we’ll take a closer look at what a sales script is, review the sales script creation process, and see some examples of what these guides can look like in practice.

Free Resource: 10 Sales Call Script Templates  [Download Now]

Sales scripts shouldn‘t be taken as rigid, repeatable, word-for-word checklists with no room for deviation — it’s better to think of them as guides and not formulas. Any successful sales conversation will take some degree of improvisation and finesse.

Still, having a baseline sales script to help shape the course of a conversation can be extremely valuable when engaging with prospects. Going into a sales conversation blind — without a solid concept of the talking points you’d like to hit or an ideal trajectory of where it should go — can make you look sloppy, unprepared, or uninterested.

Let’s take a closer look at how to put one of these scripts together.

In this article:

1. Identify a product or service to focus on.

Start by identifying the product or service you would like to ultimately sell to the prospect. You need a focal point. Bouncing from solution to solution, clumsily saying, “Well, actually, this could work for you too,” over and over again makes you seem unfocused and impersonal.

Stick to the offering that best suits your prospect‘s needs — project confidence in a product or service, and show that you understand your potential customer’s circumstances.

Example: Recruiting services

What I like: One focal point keeps you focused and assertive, positively influencing the outcome of the sale.

2. Hone in on your target audience.

Different prospects in different industries holding different positions are bound to have different needs and preferences. Though you can try to create a one-size-fits-all sales script that appeals to several kinds of prospects, you’re better off tailoring your questions and points to suit specific buyer personas.

Know who you’re selling to. Conduct research that covers the challenges they face in their role, their competitive landscape, the issues their company is dealing with, and other factors that can shape relevant questions and talking points. Remember, sales is a personal practice, so gather as much personal insight as you can when putting your script together.

Example: Hiring managers at mid-size SaaS companies

What I like: You can create templatable sales scripts for different audiences or industries. You can have versions of one script that apply to these circumstances and provide a more tailored script.

3. Develop your benefits.

Take the solution you selected and then think about the buyer that you are planning on talking to. What can they expect to see by leveraging it?

Selling features is less effective than selling benefits. Your sales script shouldn’t cover all the neat bells and whistles that come with your product or service — it should tout the bigger-picture results that it will generate.

Does your solution increase productivity? Does it cut costs? Does it take strain off employees’ day-to-day? Try to come up with at least three key benefits, and fold those into your sales script.

Example:

  • Shorten the time it takes to place a new hire.
  • Reduce internal time spent searching, screening, and interviewing applicants.
  • Build top-caliber teams leading to the best business results.

What I like: Once you’ve thought this through and used it, the shorter benefit could be repurposed in email subject lines.

4. Link your benefits to pain points.

Why is your prospect talking to you in the first place? Clearly, they have some pressing issues they need to resolve — otherwise, they wouldn’t be interested in a solution like yours at all.

You should be able to surmise some of your prospect‘s key pain points through the research you’ve conducted and the benefits you’ve framed in the previous steps.

List out those problems and concerns, and link them to the benefits you’ve identified. Every perk you can reference stems from a specific pain point your prospect is facing. Have them ready, and incorporate them into your script.

Example:

  • It takes too long to place a new hire.
  • It is difficult to find time for the interviewing process because of everyday responsibilities.
  • They lack top-caliber employees.

What I like: Linking benefits to pain points will remind your prospect exactly what problem they can solve with your product or service.

5. Ask questions about those pain points.

The ability to ask thoughtful, probing, insightful questions is the mark of a truly exceptional salesperson. Those kinds of lines of questioning demonstrate sincere interest, show that you‘ve done your research, and indicate that you actually believe that your solution is the best possible one to suit your prospect’s needs and interests.

Take a close, thorough look at the pain points you‘ve identified when developing your questions. Try to come up with at least one or two thoughtful questions for every challenge you’ve decided to reference.

If you can do that, you can frame yourself as an interested, consultative, helpful figure who’s equipped to help your prospect navigate their unique problems and concerns.

Example:

  • How do you feel about the amount of time it currently takes you to fill open positions?
  • How happy are you with the quality of candidates you are being presented with? Do you feel like you can choose from top-caliber talent?
  • How important is it for you to decrease the amount of time you spend interviewing?
  • How do delays with filling positions impact business operations and the bottom line?
  • Do you feel like you have the internal resources and processes necessary to fill positions quickly and with the right quality talent?

Using the points you came up with in steps one through five, adapt these scripts to your own product, company, and prospects.

What I like: Asking questions saves you from making assumptions, which can be incorrect and off-putting for your prospect.

6. Don’t talk too much.

If you‘re doing more talking than listening, you’re doing it wrong. A script should leave ample time for your prospect to ask questions, share comments, and generally be heard.

Record yourself giving your pitch to a friend or colleague. When you go back and listen, if more than half the pitch is you talking, rethink your approach, edit your script, and include more moments to ask your prospect questions.

Example:

  • So, what I‘m hearing from you is [repeat what you’ve heard from your prospect]. Is that right?
  • What are your goals this quarter?
  • Is this relevant to your company goals this year?
  • What’s your single biggest pain point right now?
  • How long have you been thinking about this?
  • Is there anything I’ve overlooked?
  • What’s your biggest priority at the moment?
  • How will this solution make your life easier?
  • What is your manager hoping to accomplish in the next year?
  • Have I earned two more minutes of your time?

Work a few of these questions into your script and entice your prospect to answer. It’s an easy way to keep the conversation going and learn more about them.

Want more question inspiration? Check out these probing questions, this ultimate list of sales discovery questions, and this rundown of questions that identify your customer’s core needs.

What I like: Taking the time to understand your prospects will make them feel listened to and cared for.

7. Always close for something.

Sales pro Jeff Hoffman says a salesperson should have a close in mind for every interaction they initiate. It might be as simple as asking for five minutes more of your prospect’s time. Or it might be asking for their business.

Hoffman explains, “Your talk track should always be about your prospect. Don‘t finish with ’Does that make sense?’ or ‘Is this something you‘d be interested in?’ These closing questions feel like a quiz and are more about you than them.”

He continues, “Instead, close with, ‘We have clients who love being able to build software anywhere in the world. How many software engineers do you have at your company?'” This question doesn’t assume your prospect followed your whole pitch. If you lost them, this type of question can regain their attention.

But every time you send your prospect a message, make sure you have a call to action for them.

What I like: Closing with a point about the prospect brings their energy back into the conversation and makes them the focal point.

Sales Call Script Sample

So, what do these seven tips look like in action? Let’s take a look.

Salesperson:Hello, [Prospect name]. My name is Michael Halper and I help hiring managers like you reduce the time it takes to interview, hire, and onboard new talent in 50% less time than the industry average. How many new hires do you have planned for the year?

Prospect:Well, my department has the budget for seven new hires in 2019.

Salesperson:What’s your biggest pain point in the hiring process right now?

Prospect:I‘ve got a million other things going on, and finding qualified candidates has been a challenge. We need to get these positions filled, but I’m having a hard time making it a priority with everything else on my plate.

Salesperson:I hear that a lot. I’d love to set up a 10-minute call to learn more about your goals this year, and share how Recruiters International might be able to help. What about this Thursday?

Prospect:Um, sure. I think I’ve got an 11:00 open.

I‘ve introduced myself but also gotten straight to the meat of what I can offer to make my prospect’s life better. Then, I’ve asked plenty of questions to get her talking. I ended by closing for another call. Simple, straightforward, and prospect-focused.

Sales Script Templates

Download Sales Call Scripts for Free

Ready to begin creating your own script? Use these templates as a starting point.

1. Outreach Call Script

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The outreach call is the deal-starter. It’s your chance to begin on the right foot with a prospect.

This sales call script from HubSpot allows you to showcase that you’ve done your research, and you’ll begin warming the lead without coming across as overly pushy. It comes with two options, depending on whether the prospect wants to continue the conversation or presents an objection.

2. Gatekeeper Call Script

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Gatekeepers can be anyone, from office administrators to entry-level employees who won’t be using the tool or making the final decision.

Use this sales call script to get to the right contact. That way, you don’t waste time warming a lead who’s not even close to the decision-makers. The script allows you to stay succinct and professional and provides different script options depending on the outcome.

3. Discovery Sales Call Script

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The discovery call is the crowning glory of a new deal. It’s your chance to uncover your prospect’s needs at length — and to further qualify them. It’s a good time to identify whether they’re a good-fit prospect and therefore worth pursuing.

This script is flexible enough for different industries and personas. You can get as granular about pain points as you’d like — or, if the prospect still seems reluctant, ask high-level questions that lead them slowly toward articulating their needs. Like all scripts, you’ll have different options depending on your prospect’s response.

4. Following Up Call Script

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Following up is a must to stay top-of-mind and ensure you’re doing everything possible to lead prospects toward a pitch meeting.

This script is short, sweet, and easy to customize. We also love that it includes instructions to ask why the prospect may not be interested. Every call is an opportunity to further qualify prospects and refine buyer personas.

These are not the only call scripts you should incorporate into your sales process. Download the full kit here for free and get scripts for making 1:1 connections, sharing a product promotion, and more.

Sales Script Examples

Different scenarios call for a different script. Below, you’ll find sales script examples for many eventualities.

1. Sales Call Script Templates

Introduction:

Hello [prospect’s name], this is Michael Halper from Recruiters International. Have I caught you in the middle of anything?

Value Statement:

Great. The purpose of my call is that we help hiring managers to:

[Insert your value points here]

(Optional) Disqualify Statement:

I actually don’t know if you are a good fit for what we provide so I just had a question or two.

(pause or ask for agreement or availability) If you have a couple of minutes?

Pre-Qualifying Questions:

If I could ask you quickly:

[Insert your questions here]

Examples of Common Problems:

Oh, OK. Well, as we talk with other hiring managers, we have noticed they often say:

[Insert your pain points here]

Are any of those areas you are concerned about?

Company and Product Info:

Based on what you have shared, it might be productive for us to talk in more detail.

As I said, I am with Recruiters International and we provide:”

[Insert some brief details about product, service, and/or company]

Close:

But since I have called you out of the blue, I do not want to take any more of your time to talk right now.

You have asked some good questions and there is a little more information that I would like to share. I would also like to learn more about you. Are you available for a 15-20 minute meeting where we can discuss your goals and challenges and share some examples of how we have helped other managers build top-caliber teams?

Best for: Cold prospects. With this approach, you get to know your prospect before you try and sell. Once you know exactly their problems, you can tailor the script.

2. Sales Script for Working a Gatekeeper

Hi, I’m calling for [prospect’s name]. This is [your name] with [your company name].

Option1: Gatekeeper transfers you directly.

[Follow Standard Outreach Call Script.]

Option 2: Gatekeeper asks what the call is regarding.

I’m following up on an email I sent [prospect’s name] regarding [product or service value proposition].

If the gatekeeper still doesn’t transfer the call, ask to leave a voicemail instead.

Best for: Building a relationship with the gatekeeper. This script aims to connect with the gatekeeper by finding and repeating their name.

3. Sales Script for Referencing a Mutual Connection

Hi [Prospect’s name]!

I was recommended by [mutual colleague’s name] to connect with you. I’ve been learning about [prospect’s company name] and I’d like to talk to you about [product or service value proposition]. Do you have a few minutes right now?

Option 1: Yes, tell me more. [Follow Standard Outreach Call Script]

Option 2: Objection

I understand. Is it ok if I send you a follow up email to review at your convenience? Then I can follow up with you tomorrow. [If yes, send the email and set a reminder to follow up. If no, thank them for their time and ask if there’s another point of contact they can connect you with.]

Option 3: Hang up

[Follow up with an email. This may be a better way to connect. Make sure to include resources that clearly explain what your company does and ask to continue the conversation].

Best for: Sparking a connection immediately. A mutual connection may help engage the prospect.

4. Sales Script for Email

Download Now: 25 Proven Sales Email Templates [Free Access]

Dear [PROSPECT],

I noticed that during the [EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE] you didn‘t purchase the [CTA] product at the end. And we’d love to know why.

I have no intention of trying to sell you anything, but we do want to make sure that we’re hitting the mark with our customers.

Any feedback you can give us would help.

Were you not clear on what you were getting? Is there somewhere else in your business that you need to focus? Was it too expensive? Or is your business smooth sailing?

If you respond we‘ll send you a [FREE CONTENT] over the phone to thank you for your time spent. Please respond to this email with your reason why you didn’t purchase and we’ll send that over.

Best,

[YOUR NAME]

Best for: Unengaged prospects. Stating you’re not trying to sell may encourage them to reply.

Sales scripts can also come in handy when your sales calls go to voicemail.

5. Sales Script for Voicemail

You won’t always get your prospect on the phone so it’s important to leave a clear and succinct voicemail that will encourage them to call you back.

This general voicemail template is great to get started with. You can also check out more voicemail script templates. Test them out in your cadence to see which ones get the most call backs.

Template:

Hi, this is [your name] from [company name].

I’m calling because I’d love to learn more about [common buyer persona challenges] to see if [your company name] can help offer a solution.

You can reach me directly at [your number]. I’ll also follow up with an email tomorrow. I look forward to hearing what you think.

Have a great day and talk to you soon. Bye!

Best for: Prospects who you know quite well. If you can approach them with a common buyer persona challenge, it may pique interest and help them feel understood.

6. Follow-Up Email Script

Hi [FIRST NAME],

Hope all is well. I had put a reminder in to check-in with you to see how things were going with the [NAME OF CAMPAIGN] initiatives. We had discussed a potential partnership a few months ago, but hadn’t been able to formalize our recommended engagement.

We would love to catch up and see if there are any opportunities to engage with you and help with your [DEPARTMENT (eCommerce, marketing, etc.) ] strategy. Let me know if you have some time to reconnect this week and catch up business owner to business owner on where you see things and I can provide some ideas on where we can help.

Look forward to hearing from you.

[YOUR NAME]

Best for: Prospects you’ve engaged with previously. This script shows you remember them and their campaigns.

7. Breakup Email Script

Hi [FIRST NAME],

I’ve tried to reach you a few times to go over suggestions on improving [BUSINESS NEEDS], but haven’t heard back which tells me one of three things:

You’re all set with [BUSINESS NEED] and I should stop bothering you.

You’re still interested but haven’t had the time to get back to me yet.

You’ve fallen and can’t get up and in that case let me know and I’ll call someone to help you.

Please let me know which one as I’m starting to worry!

[YOUR NAME]

Best for unengaged prospects.

8. Breakup Call Script

Salesperson:“Hello [prospect name]. I noticed you rescheduled our demo again today. Usually, when this happens a few times, it means this isn’t a priority at the moment, is that the case here?”

Prospect: “Actually, I just forgot I had a dentist appointment today. I’d really like to reschedule for tomorrow if you’re free.”

Salesperson: “Absolutely. How does 9:00 am sound?”

Best for: Prospects who have shown some apprehension. This email pushes the prospect away a little bit, but you need to focus your time on other prospects; sometimes losing a prospect is beneficial overall.

9. Breakup Voicemail Script

“Hello, [Prospect name]. I’ve left a few voicemails now and we still haven’t connected. Usually, when this happens, it means recruiting just isn’t a priority for your company at the moment. If that’s the case here, I won’t bother you again. If not, I’d love to hear from you. Thanks.”

With these examples and templates, creating a sales script should be simple. And remember, you don’t have to follow it word for word. Use it as a tool to prepare and practice.

Best for: Prospects showing apprehension. This voicemail is pushing the prospect away, but it ends kindly with a confirmation that you would like to hear from them.

Why Use Sales Scripts?

You might feel trepidation about using sales scripts — I understand. You don’t want to sound like a robot, right? But they’re a necessity. Not only because they considerably speed up the sales process, but also because they make your job much easier.

Here are just a few of the benefits you’ll enjoy by adding scripts to either your personal playbook or team playbook:

1. You will know what to say during sales calls.

This one is obvious, but it cannot be overstated. By using sales scripts, you will simply know what to say — and there’s no better feeling during a call where prospects may take you aback with objections, questions, and unexpected pain points. Plus, if you create different scripts for different verticals, you’ll be better prepared to identify a prospect’s needs from the first discovery call.

Remember, the point isn’t to regurgitate the script word-for-word, but to know it well enough that you can leverage it at the right time. Without a doubt, sales call scripts will prepare you for any scenario.

2. You will know when to list product benefits during the call.

A script gives you beats to follow, so you’ll know when exactly to begin pitching your product’s benefits to prospects. It’s essential to wait for the right time, or you’ll put off the prospect by delving into the solution without first becoming acquainted with their pain points.

This is especially important when working with different contacts at an organization. For instance, your script for a gatekeeper may include product-level benefits after you’ve warmed them up, while your script for a decision-maker may include result-level benefits right from the start.

3. You will be better prepared to handle objections.

Sales call scripts prepare you to effectively handle objections.

Objection handling is one of the hardest parts of working in sales, but a script will make it much easier, no matter what kind of contact you’re interacting with. You want to be able to dispel qualms respectfully and reasonably. The best way to do that is to use a script that prepares you to stay calm while you persist.

4. New sales reps will learn more quickly and effectively.

An unmissable benefit of sales scripts is being able to onboard new sales reps much more quickly. Instead of having them shadow different reps, all of who will likely have a different style, you can standardize the learning process by providing sales scripts to follow.

New hires will also be able to get on the phone more quickly if they know what to say from the onset, instead of having to guess or come up with their own script.

5. You will speed the sales cycle.

By eliminating trite back and forth, sales scripts allow you to get to the sales pitch as quickly as possible. You can qualify prospects much more quickly when you know what to ask. You can also handle objections earlier in the process than if you had to come up with an answer from scratch every time.

As a result, your sales cycle will considerably shorten, allowing you to find good-fit prospects, close more deals, and reach quota more quickly.

6. You will create a consistent experience across your customer base.

Whether you work exclusively with small businesses, enterprises, or consumers, it’s important to provide as consistent experience as possible across the board. This doesn’t mean using the same script on different prospects — each one will have different pain points, needs, and timelines — but it does mean having a standard starting base for each conversation.

Creating a consistent experience with a sales script will allow you to tackle new calls with confidence and establish a distinctive selling style.

Add Sales Call Scripts to Your Playbook

Whether you’re a new sales rep or a seasoned veteran, it’s essential to have a collection of effective, proven scripts you can use at every stage of the sales cycle.

The above examples and templates will start you off on the right foot, but remember to customize them so that they can help you capture your specific prospect’s attention.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2017 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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