Timing, history, clarity, options, and calmness: the five things you need to master to improve your cold call game. Here are a few methods to help improve your cold call game from Selling Power’s article, Tips for Better Cold Calls.
The art of cold calling begins when you decide to call. First off, you need to do your research on the prospective client and make the call when you find evidence of a need that has arisen that you can fulfill. Then, you need to decide exactly when you’ll make your move. Do NOT call on a Monday morning. The last thing anyone wants at the beginning of a new work week is to have a stranger call first thing in the morning trying to sell them something. The same kind of philosophy applies to a Friday evening; the prospect's brain is already checked out for the week, you’ll get nowhere. Shoot for sometime in the middle of the week after lunch (everyone is in a better mood after lunch).
Part of your research into said prospective client should be a review of the interactions your company has had with them in the past. Has another salesperson in your company tried to reach out to them recently and they weren’t interested? If so, don’t be that person who calls again offering the same thing too quickly. All that will accomplish is annoying the prospective client with your company as a whole. From that point on, the prospect will be less inclined to do business with you in the future, even if your product or service could help them.
This point applies to both your manner of speaking as well as your message. Whomever you’re talking to is not going to want to take the time to ask you to repeat yourself if you’re talking too quickly or stay on the phone long enough to hear what you have to say if you’re talking too slowly. Talk normally and keep your message concise. State who you are and exactly why you’re calling while using as few filler words/sentences as possible.
If you have to leave a voicemail and that person doesn’t respond to you within a week or so, don’t keep calling back. Why would anyone feel compelled to respond to a salesperson who keeps leaving message after message. Trust me, you won’t want to hear what they’ll have to say to you in the event that they pick up on unwanted call number six. Instead, look for someone else in a similar position who you can reach out to. Maybe they’ll be more willing to talk with you about what you have to offer them.
Receptionists can smell fear. It’s a fact; they’re trained to do so. Don’t psych yourself out before a call. Just keep the steps above in mind, pick up the phone, smile (it’s proven that if you’re smiling you’ll also sound as if you are over the phone), and dial. You can do this.