How do you make an effective cold call?
4In: Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Sales and Customer Service, Marketing Advertising and Sales
Cold calling in a business to business sales (b2b) context is a highly useful skill for any sales or marketing person, or entrepreneur, to possess.
Most salespeople fail because they do not prepare for the call and don't research their prospective customer, they sound too "generic" and do little to immediately make clear why their call is worth taking over and above the other calls that person receives. Finally they fail to phrase their value statement using terms and statements that are immediately appealing to the person receiving the call. People receiving these calls will reject 95%+ of them because they know that if they engage at all a great deal of their time will be wasted with follow up calls and e-mails.
To be effective at cold calling therefore you need to
1. See things from the perspective of the potential customer you are calling and set out to explain how your product or service can immediately benefit them. Put yourself in their shoes.
2. Don't be too greedy on each call. It is very unlikely that a senior executive will agree to an appointment on the basis of one call, from a total stranger, so ask for a commitment to read a short e-mail and give you their thoughts (qualify their interest) and plan to build interest and commitment from them over 2 or 3 calls and as many weeks.
3. Persist. This is a skill where practice really makes you MUCH better.
There is a very good free podcast series available on the Internet which you can find by searching the obvious terms.
1. Don't start off with a sales pitch but rather build it up from introduction. Feel out the situation and keep up the conversation in a friendly manner.
2. Make sure you have your calls segmented into niche markets so that you know who you are talking to and what industry they are in.
3. Prepare what you are going to say before you say it. This means writing down ideas and wording them out before you start making calls.
4. Prepare benefits and value sheet to browse from so while in a sales conversation you do not forget key selling point of your product.
5. Try morning calls when the day is new and fresh for your prospect.
18th October 2010 From India, Chandigarh