Cold calling is one of those marketing strategies that makes use of the telephone to look for potential customers. The term was coined as such because it pertains to talking to people who have had no previous communication whatsoever with the caller or the company, thus making it a cold call. Cold calling is a legit form of marketing although some mistake it as scam if the call is not handled or conducted well, that is why some find it difficult. Considering it to promote your products or services? Here are some winning tips to help you kick-start those cold calls.
7 Cold Calling Hacks
1) Read up and know your market
The first step in cold calling is not actually picking up the phone, but prior to that, you should already have conducted the pertinent research on your target market. This is important so that when you are already conducting it, your prospect will feel that you have prepared well. Read up on the background of the company you are cold calling, and the possible business issues they are facing in their industry. Also read up on the reasons why people go for your products or services and how it may be relevant to the person you are calling. The more prepared you are, the smoother your conversation will be.
2) Focus on the conversation, not the sale
‘Start with the end in mind’, as what the quote says, but this shouldn’t be the case for cold calling. Since the end goal is about closing the sale, focusing on selling too much might lose your mental focus on the actual conversation, which should be the core of the call. If you are too focused on closing the sale, this will lead you to use certain terminologies that your prospect might notice, and then he will become defensive or worse, irate. Focus first on the conversation, gauge if your prospect is a fit, before you proceed with the actual sales talk.
3) Study your prospect well
Since the focus of the cold calling is the conversation and not the sale itself, study your prospect well. This includes studying in advance how the conversation will flow. The best way to do this is to put yourself in the shoes of your prospect. If you were the one receiving the call, how would you want it to go? Would you like being pitched to by a total stranger? To avoid this, introduce yourself properly during the beginning itself. This will remove the mystery or the confusion on the other end.
4) Gain your prospect’s trust
The goal as you go through the cold call is to earn your prospect’s trust. And this can be achieved through a smooth flowing conversation. As they say, conversation is key. The conversation should sound easy and not forced. Imagine you are just talking to a long lost friend. Establish good rapport and connection with the person at the other line so that he will listen to you instead of end the call. Be a friend rather than a stereotypical sales agent.
5) Ask questions
Another way to establish a good conversation is by asking questions. You can start with asking, “Maybe you can help me out here?” in a friendly way, and hopefully the reply from the other end will be, “How may I help you?” And so it begins a two-way conversation which is how ideal cold calling is supposed to be, compared to a one-way sales pitch. You might ask, why should you ask for help? Well in reality you need their help to guide you whether they are the right fit or not.
6) Get rid of pressure
Avoid feeling stressed or pressured because this will reflect in the tone of your voice, and it often leads to rejection. The key to get rid of pressure is the right preparation and research. If you have done these, then you should have nothing to worry about. The conversation will unravel itself naturally. When you are not pressured and the conversation is easy, your prospect will lean towards your pitch naturally as well. You might actually enjoy the cold calling experience in the end.
7) Examine whether a prospect is fit or not
Lastly, it involves if you are talking to the right prospect. After having a good conversation with him, gauge if he is a valid customer, meaning if he fits your target for the product or service you are selling. From your conversation, examine his priorities and needs and check if your company matches these. You can also check if the time frame is right. That way, you can gauge if you can meet his expectations the right way.
Cold calling will really come to your advantage if you use it the right way. Use these simple hacks and you’ll surely be a fan of it in the end.