Conversation Starters in Sales | Proven Techniques and Tips

March 27, 2023
Conversation Starters in Sales

Being a good salesperson is all about being a good talker. Conversation starters are essential in sales because they can help to break the ice and establish a rapport with potential customers. A good conversation starter is typically an opening line or question that can be used to gather important information about the client’s needs and interests. These opening lines can also introduce your company’s product and gauge the customer’s level of interest. Charming your potential clients with effective conversation starters is a great way to build trust and establish a professional relationship that could last for a long time.

The Brooks Group will dive into the art of good conversation starters in this article. It will include tips and techniques that have proven successful and provide comprehensive advice on how to start a sales conversation. This guide is helpful for those starting in sales or experienced salespeople looking to improve their conversation skills, so stick around!

Why Having Good Sales Calls is Important in Business

Conversation Starters in Sales

Good sales calls are essential in business. It allows companies to communicate the value of their products or services to potential customers, driving revenue growth. Sales professionals can gather valuable information about customer needs and preferences during sales calls, which can be used for product development.

A business’s success often depends on its sales team’s effectiveness, so having a good salesman is essential to the sales cycle. Conducting a good sales call requires patience and practice, so it’s okay to stumble on your words at first or forget to ask customer-specific questions. It’s a learning experience every sales representative goes through, so don’t fret! You’ll get the hang of making great sales calls in good time.

Types of Questions to Begin the Conservation

Starting a sales conversation can be tricky. Listed below are a few types of questions that may prove particularly useful when it comes to creating a conversation with your prospective customers:

Open-ended Questions

Asking open-ended questions can make for a great start to a sales call. Open-ended questions allow the salesperson to gather crucial information about the customer’s needs and preferences. They can help build solid relationships with potential customers. Open-ended questions cannot be answered with a simple “yes” or “no” and require the customer to provide more information.

The sales rep can gain a deeper understanding of a specific customer’s goals and pain points by asking open-ended questions. When making a sales call, ask questions like “can you tell me about your current situation?” or “what are the biggest challenges you’re currently facing?” Give the client a fair amount of time to respond and practice active listening, as this will show that you genuinely care about the client’s needs.

Problem-discovery Questions

Asking problem-discovery questions is also a great way to start a sales conversation. Problem-discovery questions focus specifically on uncovering the customer’s particular challenges and difficulties. By asking these questions, you, as the salesperson, can comprehensively understand the customer’s needs and tailor your sales pitch accordingly.

Some examples of problem-discovery questions you can ask your potential client include: “how does this problem affect your bottom line?” and “how does this problem impact your daily operations?” This is a great way to gather crucial information about the client and show that you care about coming up with a potential solution to their various problems.

Value-discovery Questions

Value-discovery questions should make customers feel your company’s product can add value to their business. Value-discovery questions focus on uncovering the customer’s goals and objectives, as well as what they consider to be most valuable. By asking value-discovery questions, you gain even more understanding of the customer’s priorities and give them your sales pitch based on those priorities.

Some value-discovery questions you can ask your clients include: “what are your top priorities for this project?” and “what are your long-term goals for your business?” By asking these questions, you’ll better understand the customer’s desired outcome and how your company’s product can help them achieve that outcome.

Starting a Sales Conversation

You can use several essential tactics to open a sales conversation and build a deep connection with a prospect. Let’s go over some of these tactics below:

Right-Person Sales Activities

Ensure you chat with the right person before pitching to a potential customer. You want to avoid accidentally throwing your company’s product at the wrong person, which can seem rather unprofessional. Conducting the right-person sales activities when starting a sales conversation is critical because it will ensure that you speak with the person with authority to make a buying decision. By providing that you are communicating with the right person, you can save time and resources and increase your chances of closing a sale.

Use A Personalized Approach

Using a personalized approach when starting a sales conversation shows the customer that you have taken the time to understand their particular needs. Personalization during sales calls can help to establish trust and credibility with your customers. It’s a good idea to research the potential customer before you call them and to start the call by addressing the client by their first name. As stated before, you can use the information you gathered before the sales call to tailor the pitch to the customer’s needs and illustrate how your company’s product can help them solve their problems.

Develop a Mutual Connection

Developing a mutual connection when starting a sales call helps when it comes to establishing trust and rapport with your customers. You can establish a mutual connection by finding common ground with the customer and building a relationship based on shared interests or experiences. In the first few minutes of the sales call, show interest in the customer’s hobbies and make connections based on their response. This will make you seem personable and help you establish a relationship of mutual trust.

Listen Actively

Active listening is an essential skill in starting a sales conversation. For those who don’t know, active listening is the process of entirely focusing on what the customer is saying without interrupting or thinking about the next thing you will say. You can practice active listening when starting a sales call in several ways. It’s a good idea to remove any distractions before the call and to give the prospect your full attention. Reflect on what the customer says and try to understand their words’ underlying meaning and emotions. You’re not a mind-reader, so feel free to ask clarifying questions during gaps in the conversation if you need to.

Points For Improving Sales Conversations

Conversation Starters in Sales

Improving your sales conversations takes lots of practice. If your sales calls have improved, you may need to brainstorm ways to improve your sales script or elevator pitch. Here are some specific ways to improve your sales conversation skills:

Understanding the Customer’s Needs

Understanding the customer’s needs is crucial to improving your sales conversations. Having a deeper understanding of the customer’s specific problems can help you create a more relevant, compelling, and personalized conversation that is more likely to result in you making a sale. When speaking with your prospect, try to look for patterns in any needs or concerns your customer brings up. You should also show empathy when the opportunity tells you about their particular problems, as you don’t want to appear cold or robotic.

Building Rapport

Building a solid relationship with a potential customer is essential to winning their trust and ultimately closing a deal. As previously stated, practice active listening while the customer is speaking. Pay special attention to their demands, and provide potential solutions for their problems should they invest in your company’s product. Building a rapport with your customer will also ensure that they’ll stick around for the long haul, meaning there will be even more opportunities for you to sell to them. It’s worth it!


Clear and transparent during your sales conversations can help to build trust with your potential customers. When you are transparent about the features and limitations of your company’s products, you demonstrate that you’re an honest person with nothing to hide. This can help build credibility and establish you as a reliable source of information for potential clients. Being fully transparent during your sales calls will also help prevent any misunderstandings your client might have about your company’s product.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should you do if a significant event happens?

Asking customers about their opinion on recent significant events during a sales call can take time and effort. However, there are plenty of ways to do this tactfully and respectfully. You should start by acknowledging the event and expressing your concern. Make it clear that the conversation is optional, and avoid making assumptions or leading them in a particular direction. What matters is the customer’s thoughts and feelings, so let them know they are free to share if they would like to.

What can you do with social media accounts?

Using information from your potential client’s social media accounts is a great way to gain insight and prepare for a sales call. Look up the customer’s profile on social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. This will give you an idea of their interests, professional background, and current job role. You can also look up your client’s company on social media accounts to learn more about how their business operates. It’s also a good idea to reach out to potential customers on their social media platforms before making a sales call. Just try not to be too invasive, especially if a customer’s social media account seems too personal.

What are first impressions?

First impressions are crucial when making a sales call, as they set the tone for the rest of the conversation. It’s a good idea to start the ring with a friendly and professional greeting, using the customer’s name if you know it. Speak clearly and confidently, avoiding any hesitation or uncertainty in your voice. This takes practice, so don’t feel bad if you mess it up the first time.

What is the best way to close a deal with a customer?

Closing a deal with a prospective customer can often be the most challenging part of a sales call. However, you can use a few strategies to help increase your chances of success. Make sure to highlight the benefits of your company’s product during the conversation, and address any objections the client might have. Create a sense of urgency, and follow up with the customer after the call to see if they have further questions or concerns.

Grow More With The Brooks Group

In conclusion, conversation starters play a crucial role in sales as they can help to establish a connection and bond with your potential customers. A good conversation starter can make all the difference in a sales call as it sets the tone for the rest of the conversation and ultimately leads to closing a deal. Interested in learning more about the sales process? Check out other articles right here. 

Written By

The Brooks Group

The Brooks Group teaches straightforward, actionable sales training skills to sales managers and their teams. Our IMPACT Selling® Sales Training Program has been taught to over one million sales professionals nation-wide, and we've been recognized as one of the top sales training companies annually since 2010. We also provide various behavioral and selling assessments to aide sales managers making hiring or management decisions.
The Brooks Group teaches straightforward, actionable sales training skills to sales managers and their teams. Our IMPACT Selling® Sales Training Program has been taught to over one million sales professionals nation-wide, and we've been recognized as one of the top sales training companies annually since 2010. We also provide various behavioral and selling assessments to aide sales managers making hiring or management decisions.

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