6 Criteria For Worthwhile Cold Call Appointment Setting

Cold calling for new business has a bad rep.

The fact that it is repetitive, can be boring, and it is quite easy to get frustrating to the point of thinking that shelving cans at the local supermarket can start to look good…

… doesn’t diminish the FACT, that when used correctly, this marketing and sales tool can generate new closed high-ticket accounts with a higher ROI ratio, faster than virtually any other sales tool I have seen.

For this to happen, 6 circumstances must be present. Let’s review them.

But first, 2 comments.

A. The process starts with a cold call, but if you think of this solely as cold calling – you are already beaten. You have too narrow a view of the process. You must be open to and understand that the cold call is only a part of the total process that will get you into a warm door.

B. Cold calling is a marketing/sales tool. Like all tools it works when used correctly in the right circumstances. If you don’t – it won’t. Show me a person who states emphatically: “Cold calling is a waste of time,” “Mail is dead,” “E-mail doesn’t work” or “Nobody responds to a fax anymore” and I will show you someone blind to facts.

Cold calling need not be defended. Any marketing tool will work in the right places used correctly.

Here are the circumstances in which STARTING your sales process with a cold call makes economic sense. The how-to’s are reviewed in detail at the public seminars, or in the seminar-in-a-box.

1. THE MATH MUST MAKE SENSE.

Before you call, you must have a handle on how much you can spend to generate an inquiry or an appointment. That means knowing or making reasonable assumptions about sales conversion rates, size of average sales, margins and acceptable costs of sale. You must know what you can spend before you make your first call. The math will dictate how you craft your calling plan.

2. YOU HAVE IDENTIFIED THE POSSIBLE TARGET SEGMENTS TO CALL – AND YOU PICK THE RIGHT ONES.

It is mind boggling to me still… how much time is wasted calling targets who never should have been called at all. You have choices. Call big companies or small companies. Widget makers or wadget consultants. Most of the time your universe of potential targets vastly exceeds the time or resources you have to call. You must make an informed choice of where to invest your time and know how to test segments. Most don’t.

3. YOU CODE AND SEGMENT AS YOU CALL.

What starts with a cold call quickly becomes an automated process whereby “groups” of suspects are allocated resources and time based upon their potential worth. Low probability low potential suspects are separated from high probability high worth suspects with shades of .gray in between. You must know how to code and segment as you go along to properly allocate resources, activate automated group processes and kick out the time wasters ASAP.

4. YOU HAVE A PLAN B OFFER.

There are 2 parts to this. First, most people you speak to, who are great prospects and will likely buy from someone within 3 – 15 months, will initially say “No” to your invitation to meet. Second, you must have an offer effective at getting good prospects to “raise their hand” out of the crowd, WITHOUT YOU HAVING TO SPEAK TO THEM. I call this Plan B. It is stupid simple to craft an effective Plan B offer.

5. YOU HAVE A SYSTEMATIC AUTOMATED FOLLOW-UP SYSTEM.

Without follow-up you are dead. Why do you die? Because you are not organized. You must plan for follow-up. There are substantial profits within the group that doesn’t initially agree to meet. You tap those revenues (and people start calling you) with a simple follow-up system. The keys to this cost me $200 up-front and $19 a month.

6. YOU ARE CAPABLE AND PREPARED TO SELL.

Most people are capable. Not all are prepared. Are you really prepared for that first meeting? Have you carefully crafted and prepared your questions to achieve your purposes? Do you know what an acceptable advance is and how to get it?

Many times success in appointment setting requires re-evaluation of sales methods and learning new approaches.

If you need help with any of this, attend a seminar, get the seminar-in-a-box or have me train your team on-site or via phone.

Best wishes for good selling,
Scott Channell

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