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5 Ways to Build Instant Credibility with B2B Sales Prospects

3 min readDecember 9, 2014

I recently attended a fantastic webinar hosted by RingLead’s Amanda Nelson. The webinar discussed the importance of building credibility with sales prospects. Credibility is vital to sales. At the end of the day, people are far more likely to buy from people and companies that they deem credible. The webinar featured an expert panel including RingLead’s CEO Donato Diorio, Criag Elias, author of SHiFT and Tim Dunne, co-author of Never Be Closing.

I highly recommend checking out the webinar! In the meantime, here are 5 ways you can build credibility with your sales prospects.

Reach Out at the Right Moment

As a salesperson, one of the best ways to establish credibility is simply being helpful. Part of that entails reaching out to prospects when they are experiencing pain that you can solve. Craig Elias spoke about something he calls the window of dissatisfaction that occurs between the status quo and finding a new solution. Craig and I have actually discussed this period on the phone together, and it is the best possible time to reach out to prospects. And while inbound sales leads are often hot, if you can actually reach out to prospects during this window of dissatisfaction, then you’re going to be five times more likely to close the deal.

So how do you identify this window of dissatisfaction? According to Craig, one of the best ways is by finding newly hired executives. Craig revealed a shocking statistic that  according to one study, 80% of decision makers drop $1 million or more on new solutions during their first 90 days.

Get a Referral

Getting a referral are the best way to build instant credibility. Think about it, wouldn’t you rather buy from a person or company that had been referred to you by someone you already trust? When prospecting into new accounts, it can be beneficial to see if you have any connections in LinkedIn to key stakeholders at your target company. Then, don’t be afraid to ask your mutual connection for a referral. Even mentioning that you’ve done business with a company or individual that your prospect respects can go a long way in establishing credibility.

Establish Personal Connections by Being Inquisitive

Tim Dunne told a good story that aligns with one of my core beliefs: salespeople should be inquisitive. In Tim’s story he was having a meeting with a client he was handing over to a new rep. Handoff can always be tricky, because the new rep won’t have the same degree of credibility with the client as the old rep. However, this new rep was able to quickly establish credibility by being inquisitive. The client mentioned he had just taken a vacation. The sales rep responded by asking, “where did you go?” It turned out the client had gone somewhere that the rep knew very well and they were able to start the relationship off on the right foot. But that would never have happened without asking questions. Asking questions doesn’t merely help you make better small talk. By asking the right questions you can gain a much better understanding of your prospects’ business drivers. And as a result, you can tailor your pitch to helping them gain the results they’re looking for.

Offer Cogent Industry Commentary

In the webinar, Tim Dunne mentioned that while “having a few gray hairs” helps to establish credibility, you don’t need to be a seasoned veteran to be a successful salesperson. Dunne recommends that newer salespeople, who can’t rely on their industry connections, should instead establish credibility by offering cogent industry commentary. Dishing out some relevant statistics or studies can really help you demonstrate that you understand your prospects’ business drivers.

Refine Your Voicemail Pitch

RingLead’s CEO Donato Diorio discussed the power of sales voicemails in establishing credibility. Remember that voicemails aren’t just a chance to pitch products, they are a branding opportunity to establish the credibility of your company. If your voicemails don’t exhude confidence, or if they’re sprinkled with “ums”, “likes” and “you knows” they can tarnish your credibility and the credibility of your brand. In the webinar, Donato offers tips for how to score and improve your voicemail messages. At Revenue.io, we even offer a tool that automates voicemails, so reps can always leave voicemails that are not only targeted, but also perfectly recorded.

Check out our eBook on voicemails to learn even more about leaving successful sales voicemails!