If you are just “cold calling,” you have already lost.
If you are including leveraged cold-calling strategies into an overall effective sales prospecting process, you can gain access to decision-makers at highly desired future accounts much faster and at a much lower cost of sale – than if you refused to use “cold calling” at all.
There is a big difference between just cold calling and having an effective prospecting process of which cold-calling is a part.
Here are some tips to make your cold calling reap results.
1. Don’t follow commonly accepted wisdom.
Most people fail and are frustrated with prospecting by phone. If you don’t approach this very differently than the great unwashed – you will also fail and be frustrated.
2. Don’t measure your dial activity. It is irrelevant.
You can do a lot of dialing and get nothing. With the right methods you can dial fewer times in the right places, connect with your targets and have conversations that result in a meaningful next step.
In high-level multi-step sales environments successful prospectors dial less, because they actually have conversations.
You get what you measure. Measure dials – that is what you will get. Measure results – that is what you will get.
3. Actually seek and encourage “no’s.”
When you are clear and direct to people, for every enthusiastic “yes” you hear, on the opposite end of the spectrum you will hear a loud “no.”
When clearly communicating who you are, what you do, your credibility, benefits and what you want – people can grasp it and say “yes” or “no.”
Many cold-callers try to avoid “no’s” by watering down and softening their message. They get fewer outright “no’s,” but also miss out on yes’s as their credibility and value propositions are not clear.
4. Another reasons to encourage no’s…
… you don’t have to keep calling them back for nothing. You craft your scripts and responses to resistance so that the no’s identify themselves. If you spend less time chasing definite no’s, you will have more time to chase probable yes’s.
5. Implement strategies to grow a cold call into a warm opportunity.
Faithful readers of these notes are familiar with my strong advocacy of a Plan B, which is permission based, multi-touch, automatic and group (not individually) focused.
A proper prospecting process which starts with a cold call, BY DESIGN, will generate warm and many times pre-sold leads with a solid Plan B.
Plan B’s are relatively simple and very cheap. These marginal efforts produce major rewards.
6. Know the right problem to fix.
You can be doing many things right yet still experience exasperation using the phone.
What is the problem? Are you calling the wrong targets? Are you unable to have conversations with decision-makers? Do you have conversations yet convert too few to an appointment.
Each of these deficiencies can fixed if you know how to evaluate and diagnose the problem.
7. Know the proper prospecting math.
There is a rational relationship between the number of companies called, conversations, appointments set, close ratio, size of average sale and an acceptable cost of sale.
If you cold call without knowing the math and how to move these numbers, you will fail.
8. Don’t care about the success of one call.
Don’t set yourself up for failure. Don’t focus on what happens with any one call. Track and focus on how successful you are within groups of targets.
9. Less is more when it comes to scripting.
A lot of people send me novels and ask me “Do you think this is a good script?”
Best wishes For Sales Success,