Think that, in today’s digital world, the business cold call is dead? Guess again. Like all classic selling tools, the cold call has had to undergo some significant changes to keep up in today’s corporate world where many professional relationships are forged and sustained via text, email, and tweet.
However, when done consistently and properly, cold calls can prove a formidable force in your field marketing strategy.
Does the mere thought of launching a cold call campaign invoke mild to moderate panic? You’re not alone.
Most account executives would prefer to test the selling waters using a more virtual interactive approach. Fortunately, it is possible to get over your aversion to dialing your way to a sale.
Don’t go into the cold call process cold; know a few proven tips before you hit the phones to help increase the odds of a meaningful client engagement that keeps the sales process moving forward and lands you more face-to-face appointments.
#1 | Know Your Audience
Recent statistics show that 42% of sales reps feel they do not have the right information before making a sales call, making preparation key to success. Do your research before your call.
First and foremost, know your product. After that, know who you’re calling, their business, and how what you’re offering addresses a pain point or resolves a problem for them.
#2 | Opening Is Key
It’s common in sales; sometimes we’re so focused on the close, that we overlook the importance of the open. First impressions count and can make or break the call before it ever really begins. Don’t wing it; prepare an opening statement to keep you focused.
Forget about asking questions like “Did I catch you at a good time?” or “Do you a moment to chat?” Instead, be ready to greet, introduce yourself, mention something specific about the prospect (pain point, industry news, etc.), touch on the benefits of your products, and transition into the conversation from there.
#3 | Prepare A Script
Yes, really. Your script doesn’t have to be anything rigid or formal; all you really need is a simple outline of benefits, possible objections, and potential responses. Not having a cold calling script increases the odds of leaving out key information or (gasp!) babbling. Use it as a reference throughout the call to keep you focused.
#4 | Ditch The Premature Pitch
Many sales reps, in an effort to get the call over as soon as possible, race to the pitch. Take your time. Be confident. Let the dialogue unfurl naturally, using a “talk less, listen more” approach so you can gain insight into what your prospect wants and needs before launching into your sales pitch.
#5 | Take Control Of The Call
Successfully keeping the conversation on track and moving forward requires a careful balancing act where you challenge your prospect without coming on too strong. If you find the interaction running off-road, gently, but assertively, guide your prospect to keep the call moving forward toward a sales.
#6 | Don’t Give Up To Soon
Effective cold calling is generally never a “one and done” initiative. Don’t quit if the first call was unsuccessful. Recognize that you’ll likely have to call the same prospect several times before feeling a little tangible sales momentum. The good news? Every engagement with the same person allows you a chance to build on your existing rapport with the prospect, making each subsequent call feel a little less cold.
What’s your go-to tip for a successful cold call? Tell us all about it in the comments section below!
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