By: Tim Woitach
Cold calling has always been a hot topic among sales professionals. There are a lot of industry experts that look at the process as either a last resort or a waste of time altogether. However, if you properly plan and prepare, a cold calling campaign can be hugely beneficial to your sales team and generate a lot of leads.
With that in mind, here are eight tips to get you started with your next campaign:
Research Prospect List: It is key to do your research before a cold calling campaign. Look for prospects with similar businesses and profiles of existing clients. You have experience selling to similar prospects and this will help you set yourself up for a successful call.
Build a Script Outline: Once you have your call list set, it’s time to focus on what you are going to say. Write up a few sentences introducing who you are and what service you provide. It is important to use the script as a guideline, rather than a word for word reading.
Anticipate Objections: Before you make your calls, prepare a list of possible objections. Preparing for objections and having a quick response will allow you to push the conversation forward, instead of dwelling on a potential negative. This will help you control the call.
Stay Positive: Once you’ve made enough cold calls, and faced enough rejections, it can be difficult to remain positive about your campaign. However, having a positive and upbeat attitude really can help make your calls more successful. If you have confidence in your agency and your products, it will create a successful campaign.
Always Leave a Message: Always leave a brief message hitting a few talking points from your script. It is also a good practice to let the contact know you will be calling back at a given date and time, unless they prefer to reach out to you. This allows you to set up expectations for a future call and allows the opportunity for your contact to reach out to you at a time that is most convenient to them.
Call, Call, Call: Now that you’ve created your list and prepared your script and talking points, it’s time to get calling. It may be uncomfortable or robotic at first, but the only way to get better is to keep calling. Don’t get discouraged by a few unsuccessful calls, but trust in yourself and in your preparation and keep making those calls.
Adjust to New Objections: No matter how many calls you’ve made and how prepared you are for each prospect, there will still be objections you didn’t expect or prepare for. Knowing the benefit of your services and thinking on your feet can help you react to the surprises. Once you hear a new objection or obstacle, make sure to write it down and prepare a response before you start calling again.
Don’t be pushy: There will be situations where the prospect is being elusive or difficult. Don’t become pushy and try to force a conversation or meeting out of someone who doesn’t want to talk. Take a step back and assess whether they are busy at the moment and could be called at another time, or if they simply aren’t interested in your product. Not every call is going to be a winner, but don’t lose an opportunity by being too aggressive or forceful over the phone.
Everyone has a different style that works for them, so take these tips as an outline for you to begin planning your campaign. Reach out to other brokers within your agency, or other contacts who may have experience, and see what has worked for them in the past. Your cold call script should always be a working document, updating as you perfect your style.
Hendricks, Drew. “10 Sales Techniques To Never Cold Call Again.” Forbes.com. Forbes, 24 Sept. 2014. Web. 19 Oct. 2016. http://www.forbes.com/sites/drewhendricks/2014/09/24/10-sales-techniques-to-never-cold-call-again/#2ef5731928a3
James, Geoffrey. “7 Steps to a Perfect Cold Call.” Moneywatch. CBS News, 20 Sept. 2012. Web. 19 Oct. 2016. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/7-steps-to-a-perfect-cold-call-20-09-2012/