If you are an entrepreneur or a business owner, you’d know that cold calling is one of the oldest and tried-and-tested ways to get in touch with potential customers and clients. In simple words, it’s making a list of your potential clients who you think can benefit from your product or service. Once you’ve a list on your hands, you reach out to them, find out about their needs and explain how your product/service can meet that need.
If it’s your first day handling cold calling services, it can seem like an overwhelming task. It’s important to know that for marketers, cold calling is a sure shot way of boosting their revenue. Naysayers may say that telemarketing is dead. But it’s not. It’s alive and kicking. The rules have changed in the sense that with time, you’ll have to figure out a better way to make cold calling work for your business. But if you follow the right cold calling tips and do it the right way, it’s going to bring you results.
Remember Mark McCormack’s golden words, All things being equal, people will do business with a friend; all things being unequal, people will still do business with a friend.
What this shows is that, the key to increasing the success rate of your cold calls lies in how quickly you warm up cold calls, i.e., how quickly you manage to expedite the cold calling journey from being a complete stranger, to acquaintance, to friend.
But the million dollar question is how do you do it? We have put together a list of cold calling tips and tricks that will help you strike the right node and be successful in this endeavor-
One of the most important cold calling sales tips you can learn is that “preparation is key”. There can be various ways to prepare. One of them is to know who your customers are. Since your job is to call them and keep them engaged, knowing who they are can help you understand their personality and communicate with them accordingly. As Forbes puts it beautifully, there are basically 4 types of customers :
This is the kind of customer who doesn’t like any fluff or sales pitch but cold, hard facts. To talk to them, you will need to be armed with strong stats and research. Give them a winning stat about your product and service and they will be sold.
The friendly customer will need a good amount of rapport and conversation complemented by facts. They would like to know more about your company and by being transparent with them, you can make them an ally.
Not every sales call will go smooth. These kinds of customers will object to every pitch you try to make. The best way to deal with these customers is to ask for their opinion right at the beginning and frame your pitch around their concern.
This is the type of customer whom you can move with emotions. They aren’t so much in for facts as much as they would like to know how your product or service can improve their lives. Making them feel good about your product or service is key to winning them over.
Thus being prepared with strong research about your prospects can give you a good head start.
Schedule the Call at the Appropriate Time
One of the best cold calling strategies you can use is to get the timing right. Let’s face it, you’ve done all your research, you have a script ready but you’re calling at the wrong time so the customer won’t even hear one word of what you’re going to say. To be more productive with your cold-calling results, you need to find a time when the client won’t be sleeping, or busy at work, or engaged otherwise. As per statistics, weekday afternoons are the best time to make cold calls to your potential customers, especially between 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Tuesdays or Thursdays.
Call with a Purpose
One of the best cold calling techniques you can use is to prepare a clear outline of what you’re going to say before making the call. You don’t necessarily have to write the entire script down but just the essential points that you’ll need to refer to. This way, you won’t be clueless as to how to carry on the conversation with the potential client. It also helps you sound confident throughout the call, thus putting you in charge of the conversation.
Introduce Ahead of Time
To increase the chances of your success, try booking an appointment before calling. This way, you won’t have to worry about whether it’s the right time to call or not. You can communicate with them via email or SMS/Whatsapp to first book an appointment for your call. Chances are that the customer will be more receptive to what you’re saying and not taken by surprise or annoyed at having been distrubed.
Leave Effective Voicemails
When you are cold calling a prospect, the chances of answering your call are quite low. Most of the time, you will end up at their voicemail, which is why you must learn to master leaving an effective voicemail. Here are a few cold calling tips and tricks that you can use to pique your prospect’s interest in the voicemail so that they call you back.
- Decide a short message to deliver in the voicemail. You could mention that your prospect was recommended by someone they know or focus on solving a problem that you know the prospect is facing.
- It really helps to have a few scripts ready that communicate a specific message and indicate the importance and urgency of the call.
- Keep a track of the voicemails that you are leaving and the scripts that work the best. You can do some testing to further improve them.
A bad call can discourage the best of agents, but that doesn’t always mean defeat. What’s important is to keep a positive attitude, get on a new call, and learn from mistakes. Besides, rejection is quite a common and necessary part of all sales activity. No one can close 100 percent of the sales. Here are some cold calling tips to help you overcome your fear of rejection–
- Take it lightly. One thing you can try out is to create a group on Slack or any other channel that you use to communicate among your team members, and then use it to share stories of rejections in a funny way and garner support and tips
- If a client rejects you politely, you may ask them questions and try to improve on those areas.
- Practice cold calling with your colleagues. Ask them to cut you off in the rudest way possible. Once you get the hang of it, it’s easy to handle rejection from clients and serve them better.
Get Over Your Hesitations
Hesitation or call reluctance is a common problem among new sales personnel. But with the right measures, they can overcome the jittery feelings they get before making a cold call to the clients. The next time you are nervous about a client call, try focusing on the positives. You cannot control the outcome, but you can always control your efforts and your reaction to the outcomes. Try to shift your focus out of the result and see every call as a learning experience. See how you can enrich your next call with the customer with the power of your learnings. Slowly build confidence and keep going from strength to strength.
Time Is Valuable, Don’t Waste It
It is your job to build a list of quality prospects to contact. So, make sure that you don’t waste time on every client trying to figure out whether you can help them or not. You can instead be smart and reach out to clients who are looking for help with their pain points. Look at patterns, specific demographics, age groups based on your previous call experiences. This way, you will face fewer rejections by honing in on contacts and companies who you can help.
If you are calling prospects who don’t fit your ideal criteria, you are wasting their time as well as yours. Some contacts will have the right traits and will say no to you, but once you get in touch with them, you can always make a warm call to them at a later point. Hence, it is advisable to have both cold calling vs. warm calling techniques in place to reach the most prospects and close maximum sales.
Finally, one of the best cold calling tips you can learn is be grateful to the customer for their time. It’s important to remember that by calling them, you’re taking up a valuable part of their day so it’s best to be polite and thank them for giving you an opportunity to talk with them.
To be completely successful with cold calling, you’ll need to put in a lot of training and hard work. In the end, cold calling is not only a way to better understand your customers, it is a great way to boost your company’s revenue. When the revenues grow, so will you.