Effective Cold Calling Strategies
There are no two ways about it. Cold calling potential clients can be a real challenge. It’s hard to call a stranger you’ve had little-to-no prior contact with, get them engaged, and then successfully pitch a product or service.
Going through this process repeatedly can be even more challenging.
That said, when done right, cold calling can be a great way to build sales and earn commissions—particularly these days with so much business being handled remotely.
With that in mind, here are some expert cold calling tips to help you bring in more sales.
1. Do Your Homework
The term “cold-calling” is a bit of a misnomer these days. If anything, you don’t want to go in cold. You want to go in prepared.
Study what your clients do, how long they’ve been doing it, and how. Research the best people to call at that business and look them up on LinkedIn or other social media sites. Learn about their experience, responsibilities, and how you might find some common ground. (The chances are good that they’re also looking you up, so have a respectable social media presence.)
While you might not be wholly successful at first, you are more likely to get a positive reception on a follow-up call if you come across as someone who shows particular interest in the company or the person you’re calling.
2. Know Your Prospect’s Challenges
When choosing prospects, select those that need what you sell. Instead of trying to convince prospects to purchase your product or service, find businesses that may be experiencing challenges you can help with.
Any product or service should deliver some kind of solution and value. Don’t waste time with prospects who may not appreciate what you have to offer. Instead, focus on potential clients with a problem you can help solve.
3. Adopt A Cold-Calling Persona
The cold-calling process can be emotionally draining—particularly if you hear the word “no” a lot. It’s hard not to take that personally after a while.
One method veteran cold-callers use is adopting a cold-calling persona. This doesn’t mean being dishonest and coming up with a fake background. Instead, it’s about mentally separating your personal self from your work self. You can do this with a slight change of pitch in your voice. Or simply by tilting your head a certain way when on a sales call.
Consider this akin to putting on a metaphorical business suit you can take off and put aside at the end of the day. It’s a small tip, but it can go a long way in helping you maintain your cold-calling endurance.
4. Know Your Script
If you don’t want to sound like you’re reading from a script, then don’t read from a script.
Memorize, practice, and work in a few alternative lines to make you sound more natural.
Clients can tell almost immediately when someone is reading off a page or computer screen, and it’s an immediate turn-off—knowing your script and presenting it like a human being makes you more relatable and gives you a better chance of success.
5. Try Not To Sound Pushy
Easier said than done, right?
Fortunately, there are three simple tricks to help with this.
- Don’t act like a salesperson. Instead, act like a fellow business person or consultant.
- Identify your target’s challenges, and then discuss how you can help. Introduce your product or service as a solution to a pain point.
- Ask open-ended questions to get the customer to feel more engaged in your call.
The idea is to keep the prospect on the phone. Sounding too pushy will end your call before you can make a pitch for a sale or a follow-up meeting. On the other hand, if you can keep your prospect on the line—with them doing most of the talking—for around seven minutes, your success rates should improve.
6. Identify Why They Might Say No, and Be Ready
Turning a no into a yes.
Before placing your call, see what you can do to identify their reasons for saying no beforehand. If you can figure this out, you’re in a better position to focus on finding solutions and steering your prospect toward finding the value in your product or service themselves and then saying yes to your offer.
We’re All Human
It’s easy to see prospects as numbers and cold calls as mere lists.
Remember that on the other side of every phone call or video screen is a living, breathing person with their own responsibilities, goals, and lives.
The real key to successful cold calling is connecting with people, and the only way to do that is to recognize our shared experiences. We’re all human, after all.
If you are looking for top cold-calling talent for your organization, reach out to Rainmakers!