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Cold calling in business development.

By  RANDSBARG 1 year ago
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What Is Cold Calling?

Cold calling (sometimes written with a hyphen) is the solicitation of a potential customer who had no prior interaction with a salesperson. A form of telemarketing, cold calling is one of the oldest and most common forms of marketing for salespeople.

Warm calling, on the other hand, is the solicitation of a customer who had previously expressed interest in the company or product.

How Cold Calling Works?

Cold calling is a technique in which a salesperson contacts individuals who have not previously expressed interest in the offered products or services. Cold calling typically refers to solicitation by phone or telemarketing, but can also involve in-person visits, such as with door-to-door salespeople.

Successful cold-call salespersons should be persistent and willing to endure repeated rejection. To be successful, they should adequately prepare by researching the demographics of their prospects and the market. Consequently, professions who rely heavily on cold calling typically have a high attrition rate.

The Difficulty of Cold Calling

Cold calling generates various consumer responses, such as acceptance, call terminations or hang-ups, and even verbal attacks. Marketing analysts estimate the success rate of cold calling is just 2% even for a skilled professional. Based on this estimate, only perhaps 5 out of 250 calls will be successful. Conversely, a warm call salesperson boasts a more favourable success rate of approximately 30%.

As technology advances, cold calling has become less desirable. Newer, more effective prospecting methods are available, including email, text, and social media marketing through outlets like Facebook and Twitter. Compared to cold calling, these new methods are often more efficient and effective at generating new leads.

How to Make Cold Calls with These 5 Simple Strategies

1.  Smile and Dial

Next time you go to pick up the phone, hold a smile for at least twenty seconds, whether you’re in a call room or at your desk.

While it may seem silly at first, recent research suggests that wearing a smile – genuine or not – brings certain benefits that can help reluctant cold callers:

  • Lowers your heart rate.
  • Reduce stress.
  • Builds rapport.

2. Stand like Superman

 Standing in a power position is an effective cold calling strategy that will:

  1. Increase testosterone levels (increases confidence)
  2. Decrease cortisol levels (decreases stress)

3. Speak Only One or Two Sentences at a Time

This cold calling technique is straightforward but often overlooked.  Studies show that the brain can only hang onto 20-30 seconds of information at any given time. By that measure, your prospect will likely only retain 30 seconds of a fifteen-minute conversation.

Keep it short and sweet. Rather than overwhelm a stranger with information or industry-specific terminology, speak clearly and stick to high-level explanations.

If your prospect starts asking for specific information, you’ll know they’re interested in learning more. Take this opportunity to set up a meeting when they can discuss any questions in more depth.

4. Lean into rejection (Yes, It’s a Cold Calling Strategy)

Are you comfortable with rejection?

For a cold calling salesperson, the answer should always be “yes.” The key to cold call success is your ability to take rejection as a form of motivation.

Instead of aiming for a set number of “yes’s” per day. Focusing on “no” has a doubly positive effect: it allows you to increase your sales pipeline velocity, thereby improving your sales performance.

The Challenges

Cold calling is emotionally demanding because receiving a cold sales call can bring out the worst in people. When launching into a round of cold calls, you can expect verbal abuse, prospects who hang up on you, and even occasional threats. The best approach is to remind yourself that they are not rejecting you personally. They're simply reacting to the situation. Just let any hostility roll off, disconnect, and move to the next name on the list.

Some business-to-business salespeople find that calling either early or late in the day increases the odds of getting an actual decision maker on the phone since many executives work either early or late, and a gatekeeper won't be there to deflect your phone call.

The best time for business-to-consumer cold calling is outside normal working hours when people are more likely to be at home. Be careful to respect dinner time and kids' bedtimes, however. You'll also need to be aware of time differences in different geographic locales.

 

 

Is cold calling Effective? 

Salespeople have mixed views as to the effectiveness of cold calling. Many believe it's the most efficient and effective way to reach new leads. Others feel that the many new sales channels available today, such as email, social media, and text message marketing, have eclipsed cold calling.

While some sales experts have extremely positive or negative opinions of cold calling, most accept the practical viewpoint that unless you have enough warm leads from other sources to fill your pipeline, you'll have to do at least some cold calling to make up the difference.

To increase chances for success, consider these tips:

  • The first few seconds are the most important. How you begin the phone call might be the biggest determining factor in whether you will be successful. Be up front about why you are calling, and state it—succinctly—in a way that keeps the recipient of the call on the line.
  • Don't worry if you're doing most of the talkingIf the recipient of the call is listening and hasn't hung up the phone, you're doing your job. It's important to gather information from the potential client, but an initial silence might be a sign that you've got their attention and they're interested. Use that opportunity to make your pitch.
  • Engage the subject in conversation. While that initial silence might be OK, you still want to get the person talking about the business' specific needs. Ask about how they are doing and lead your contact into discussing issues that your product or service can address.
  • Direct the conversation to the next level. To make the sale or achieve your objective with the call, you need to get beyond the conversation stage. Once the subject begins to show some interest in what you're pitching, move the conversation toward the next logical step, whether that be a meeting or details of a sale. Get the subject thinking about the next step before actually committing to it?
  • Take advantage of social media for research. While the rise of social media might be one factor why cold calling is less effective, it also can be a tool to help salespeople. Most people have accounts on popular sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and others, and if you do a quick search before making a call, you might be able to glean some helpful information from the profile pages of the people you are calling. Since volume is important for cold calling to be successful, limit such searches to what can be found quickly and easily.
  • Avoid using a script. A lot of salespeople will swear by the effectiveness of a good script, but people are good at recognizing someone reading from a script and will hang up before you get through the first sentence. Be conversational instead. If you've done some homework or have warmed up the lead with another marketing approach, open by acknowledging that you know they opened your email or liked your post. Ask them to tell you what their needs are. People will be more responsive to talking about themselves or their own problems than they will be to listening to a scripted sales script.

Conclusion

Now, as we know Cold calling generates various consumer responses, such as acceptance, call terminations or hang-ups, and even verbal attacks so we should always be ready for every challenges that’s why above all the key success for this is, practice, practice, practice. While cold calling may never be much fun for you, you can get better at it, and the more you practice, the more effective a sales technique it will be. So get your script and your call list together and reach for the phone. The people who want to do business with you are out there - but you have to let them know about you first.

 

 

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