I first encountered the term “cold calling” while watching the movie “Glengarry Glen Ross”. Though I was familiar with this method before, the term was unknown to me.
I used to think it was just an unpleasant customer experience. But, years in marketing have taught me that this is a unique and very effective sales technique.
Cold calling with new customers is usually a nightmare for every salesman.
But, one can not dispute the fact, that though often irritating, it is still a very effective method.
Sure, there are business strategies that will boost the seller’s confidence. The rules of the game should not only be known – but also applied in practice.
What Do You Need?
The main thing cold calling requires is a quality phone line. Today a large number of companies are turning to VoIP services instead of traditional landlines. Many VoIP providers are offering a wide variety of service and price packages. If you’re considering to choose a VoIP package and provider, be sure you browse a lot. Since you want to have a successful business, you should choose a service that will meet your needs.
Strategies & Techniques in Successful Cold Calling
Cold calling is usually the first step in the sales process.
It’s a phone call made to a potential customer to whom you had no previous relationship.
This type of call has an aim to identify the potential buyer. You should also judge the need for your product and see whether sales opportunity does exist. If everything’s well done, the cold call will be an important factor in your business. This type of marketing is especially popular among small business groups. It makes them worthwhile because they have control of their own destiny. Will it be good or not – it depends on how you mastered the basic techniques for cold calling tips. Here are some initial steps for successfully cold calling:
1. Set Up Your Target First
Opposite of what you might think, cold calls are not recommended for sale. It’s more useful to make calls in order to identify a potential customer and make a first impression. You should qualify customers as prospective or non-prospective. Afterward, you should secure a chance for a pitch meeting. As you set the target, be sure about it before you start the call. After that be persistent and stick to your goal.
2. Make a Good Market Research in Advance
In order to have a successful strategy, you have to know who do you call.
This is very important because the call has to be active from the beginning until the end. This practically means you ought to know who you are reaching out to, and who’s most likely to answer your call.
People are usually not in the mood to waste their time taking a call they weren’t expecting. Keep that in mind but don’t get discouraged. The truth is – the more calls you make the higher are the chances of making a pitch meeting. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you should make your calls with a careless attitude.
Doing the market research prior to your phone call can be sometimes essential.
In the first place, it’ll tell your potential customer that you really have something interesting to say, and that he/she might gain something from staying on the line.
Make sure you browse your management database. Take a look at the notes, check if this is the first time call.
Determine if your businesses are similar – and call.
Try to reach for the person that will pick up the phone and stay on the line.
3. Be Prepared from Mental Side too
You’re about to start your cold calls. Anyone who ever did this job knows that sometimes you feel much “colder” than a call you’re supposed to make. Having a knowledge that you need to make over a 100 calls to get just 3-5 interested people, can sometimes be very frustrating.
That’s why you should be mentally prepared and stable. A large number of calls during just one day can be very exhausting. That’s why you have to stay focused and be able to function.
Try to sleep well, exercise or just relax. Do whatever puts you in a non-stress mood.
And even if you are rejected, it’s not the end of the world. There is a thin line between being rejected to being a step closer to your goal. Whenever you’re rejected, keep in mind that it is not personal.
There are various reasons why people often say NO. It’s your job to be part of the process of selecting and connecting to the right clients. Learn to dive in the task you’re working on – making a call. And even if you feel nervous, do not worry. It is a perfectly normal thing. It’s an obvious sign of your conscience and self-awareness. It is a reminder for anyone who does this job to continue without hesitation.
4. Approaching the Potential Customers
None of your calls will ever be the same, but it is recommendable to have a script before you call anyone.
It should be a reminder to you, so you can score all the significant points.
Without a reminder, you might be at risk of going off the topic. You might even forget the name of a person you called, and that would be highly inappropriate. If you are too general during your conversation, you will make a counter-impression than the desired one.
This is quite a good reason to take the time and develop a personalized script that can turn your cold call into a friendly conversation. If you reach to that point, you’re halfway of selling whatever you’re selling.
Carefully choose your words and address the person on the other side of the line by his or her’s name. Try to engage that person into the conversation.
Also do not forget to connect your potential customer to “your phone call mission”.
5. Stories About Success Do Help
It’s always a plus to have a customer success story when you’re talking to the novice.
It’s actually one of the easiest ways to connect.
Relevant stories about your past clients successes are the most effective means of obtaining a potential customer. You should keep in mind that these relevant stories increase the trust of the customers.
However, people buy something when they feel ready for it. Not when you are ready to sell. In that context, you must be careful, and try to establish the connection with your prospects even after the call.
6. Be Sure You Practice a Lot
Learn, practice – practice, learn. That is the recipe for successfully cold calling. For most things in life, practice is the path to perfection. Cold calls are not exceptional.
If you’re feeling uncomfortable at the start, you should practice out loud. Even better, you can role-play with your friends. It will be both, fun and educational. You can practice various call scenarios and this way you can be prepared for any situation. While at the beginning of their career, many professionals even used to record themselves and check for the usual mistakes.
Practice teaches you to be convincing. If you wouldn’t buy what you offer for sale – why would you think someone else would? Let’s be honest…If you’re not excited, or you feel embarrassed about the call or the product you offer – the customer will definitely feel the same way.
Although it may sound like a stereotype, the seller’s attitude is the thing that sells goods.
When you overcome the obstacles that every beginner in this business faces, then you will realize that there are no three places in this business.