Cold Calling Tips And Sales Success
Here are some cold calling tips which will increase your chances of sales success in what can be an important first part of the sales process.
Be clear on what you can get from each call. Your primary objective is probably to get an appointment to see your prospect but if you don’t achieve this what else can you get from the call – information on who your prospect currently buys from, what price they are paying, what they like about their current supplier, what they don’t like about your proposition?
Do your research
Know your customer and their business so you can talk with them with confidence about their business and their needs. Be selective about who you target - there is little point in ringing up customers who you know definitely will not buy your service.
Getting past the gate-keeper
The ‘gate-keeper’ is the person who will be making the decision whether to put you through to the person you want to speak to so be pleasant with them. It helps if you know the person you want to talk to but if you don’t, asking for their help in finding this out and when they are available can help to get them on your side.
Your opening statement
Prepare the first part of your call to ensure it gets off to the best possible start. Avoid asking whether it s a good time to talk as there really is only one answer…no! Here is a suggested structure:
Have your information at your fingertips
- Greeting e.g. ‘Good morning Mr Smith’
- Introduce yourself ‘This is Louise Harper from People Recruiters’
- Refer to something your prospect can relate to e.g. ‘I heard on the radio that you have just won a contract to supply widgets to company y and will be taking on 50 new staff’
- Give the benefits of your product or service ‘We specialize in providing manual staff in your sector and in the next two months are offering a discounted rate for our services.’
- Provide a statement which will open up the conversation E.g. ‘I’d like to ask you a couple of questions to find out whether we might be able to help you’
Whilst you don’t want to be reading a script one of the most important cold calling tips is to ensure that you prepare the key points you need to convey such as the benefits of your product, its unique selling point, what questions and objections may arise and your answers.Be proactive about asking for appointments
Suggest a specific date and time for an appointment to close the conversation.Listen and know when to move on
Probably the biggest turnoff is having someone do the hard sell without stopping to listen. If you get objections ask questions to clarify but you can't have sales success every time so be aware when you have a definite refusal and move on.Review
Spend a few minutes after each call, whether successful or not, reflecting on what went well and what you might have done differently to produce a different outcome…see all learning as positive and move on to the next call. Remember it is a numbers game
No, you certainly won’t win them, all but the more calls you make the more positive hits you’ll have, so keep going!
For more cold calling tips try one of the following books.
Recommended Further Reading:
The Cold Calling by Will Kingdom (Paperback - 5 Mar 1998)
Cold Calling for Chickens by Bob Etherington (Paperback - 23 Oct 2006)
Cold Calling for Women: Opening Doors & Closing Sales: Opening Doors and Closing Sales by Wendy Weiss (Paperback - 26 Mar 2008)
Small Business Marketing
Small Business Advertising
Telephone Cold Calling
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