To make cold calling work, calls are the dreaded way to bootstrap a company into profitability, and many salespeople hate them. The reason they’re so hated is often that the salesperson has experienced the most ineffective version of cold calling, which led to them being rejected over and over again. To make cold calling work a more successful approach, however, would naturally be more enjoyable to perform.
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For that reason, in this post, we offer a few basic, valuable tips that will help anyone convert a higher percentage of their cold calls. Implement these guidelines, and your cold calls can become significantly less painful.
To make cold calling work, do your homework
Doing a bit of research on each person you call can pay off tremendously, especially once you learn what things to focus on. A quick Google search will tell you a bit of basic info about the person’s company, and maybe even their role in it (at the very least, their title). This gives you background info, but can also give you clues into what the prospect’s mindset will be; what matters to them, and what will persuade them.
It seems time-consuming, but if you can leverage the information into increased conversions and easier bond development, it’s well worth it.
Focus on problem-solving
Put simply: just ask how you can help. Almost everyone will talk about their problems and concerns if prompted. This is your chance to listen to their issues, acknowledge them, understand them, and see if your solution is a fit. Ask if what you offer meets that need, and if not, what would.
In good scenarios, the prospect will see that your solution could work for them. But at the very least, you’ll get useful information that can help you on future calls.
You aren’t there to push the prospect into anything. That’s not your first goal (or a proper goal at all). Instead, your first focus is to listen and zero in on the opportunities presented by the prospect’s problems. Once you’ve done this, the rest of the puzzle pieces that lead to a sale are a lot easier to put in place.
Have something to give
If you have a free informational resource (a blog post, an e-book, an upcoming seminar, etc.) that you can share that is responsive to the prospect’s issues – that’s great! It puts you in closer contact, may get you an email address, builds rapport, and lets you deliver value right from the start. This is an effective way to move from a cold call to a warm prospect.
Review the numbers
What times of day work best, what issues should you focus on, which prospect titles produce the best results, what should you lead with, etc.?
These are all great questions to ask, and great questions to capture data about. The more you track, the better you can understand and refine your approach. That way, you can improve over time.
Keep at it! If you battle through enough quick hang-ups, you’ll eventually make a sale. And the more you make, the easier it gets.