Cold Calling Is Dead?
Cold calling – “Is it really dead?” I am frequently asked this question, and my answer is a resounding “NO”. However, processes have changed and cold calling is simply practiced in a slightly different way than it used to be.
My trainings have always advocated techniques to make a cold call a warm call by starting with :
- A referral
- Something you know about them, e.g. I understand you have ……. is that correct?
- Commenting on an action they made that you saw
- Noticing a comment they made on social media
- Having a connection with them on linked in
- Commenting on an article they wrote in Google News
There is so much information about companies now online, that there is no excuse not to find out something of interest about your prospect before you call.
What Is The Most Popular Way To Get Leads Nowadays?
Here is a Telesales Coaching Call I did with a customer and it’s part of my CD series “Telesales Coaching Calls Live”. I have copied the transcript of my critique below if you would prefer to read it than listen to it on Track 3.
For trainers who are reading this, I suggest you get your staff to listen and then ask them to critique the call themselves. You will then have my critique in the transcript to add to the coaching.
I hope you get some “ahas…” from these. Here you go:
For the whole series of coaching calls click here for more information
Telesales Coaching Call Critique (Transcript of the call)
1. Never use the word “BUT” to counter an objection in Sales Conversations
This one little word is often used when responding to an objection and it can spoil everything else you say. “But” negates everything you say before it so disagreement is all the customer hears in sales conversations.
If a customer comes up with an objection, acknowledge it and follow with the word “and” not “but“.
Customer: This software sounds like it would take a long time to install.
Salesperson: Yes, it does take a long time to install and that challenge is taken care of by our own expert consultants who set the whole thing up for you as part of the service.
Customer: It’s very expensive
Salesperson: I understand you thinking that and that’s why I would like to include a free service contract in the price for you for 5 years. How does that sound?
This building rapport technique requires you to listen for your customer’s language patterns. This is a challenging skill to acquire but if you can start to be aware of your own communication style and that of others, you will quickly become a great rapport builder. When we use our customer’s preferred language style, we become like them, and we all know that people buy from people they know like and trust.
We communicate in 3 ways but we generally have a preference for one or a combination of 2 of the following ways.
1. Building Rapport Technique with Auditory People
These people communicate through their ears. They use language like “I hear what you are saying”, “Tell me more about it”, “Explain to me how it works”, “It sounds good”, “That rings a bell”, “I hear what you are saying”.
2. Building Rapport Technique with Visual People
These people communicate through their eyes. They use language like “I see what you mean”, “Can you show me how to do that”, “It looks like I will be going ahead with that appointment” , “I see what you mean”.
3. Building Rapport Technique with Kinaesthetic People
These people communicate through their feelings. They use language like, “I get the feeling this is not the right product for us”, “I would have to experience it to get to grips with what it is about”, “I need to grasp the concept”, “How do you feel about that?”.
Why Ask Questions?
It is important to ask great questions on a telephone sales call to build rapport early. That way you find out people’s needs before you start telling them what you have to offer. Ideally they should begin with What, Why, Where, When, How, Which and Who so that the customer has to expand on what they want and they cannot answer “no”. They should create pain with the customer or give them pleasure because those are the two reasons people want your services.
Inactive customers are people who may have bought only once from you or placed a small order. Never think they are not worth calling. It is a vital sales strategy to stay in touch with these customers as well as with your existing customers because you will be able to make more sales from them. Here’s how …
Maybe at the moment inactive customers might not justify a face to face call but you can certainly pick up a phone to stay in touch. You might be afraid to call them because they might tell you that they have gone to another supplier or they had a bad experience with you.
1. When you call someone with an offer and they say “NO,” you can call them again because the next time they might be in a different space. Persistence does work if you do it in a nice, non pushy way.
2. When negotiating, don’t drop the price too dramatically just to get the sale. It makes it look like you were trying to rip the client off in the first place and makes the client suspicious that the products have much less value.
3. Do not lie to get a sale. Offer the client the right option for them even if you lose a bit of commission.
4. Pay the client a compliment when you first meet them . Comments and criticism do not build rapport.
5. People like to know the name of the person they are dealing with so provide it.
6. Do not be too familiar with new clients. Not everyone likes hugs and kisses from a stranger.
7. Do not make the customer call you about an error on delivery. You call them as soon as you find out.
8. If a client complains, acknowledge the client straight away before they tell thousands of people .
Here’s the full story of what happened
A great Lead generation tool is LinkedIn but so often when people want to connect with new prospects on LinkedIn, they send the standard request “I’d like to connect with you on linkedIn.”
Prospecting Emails must create curiosity and interest
The prospect has not got the faintest idea “why”, so I recommend you make it more personal and give a reason to create curiosity and interest with the prospect. Just writing the above requires the prospect to look up who you are and take time out from their busy day. Make it easy for them and write an email like you write a script for a cold call.
1. (Flatter the prospect with something you noticed about them) e.g. “I read your article in the Sydney Morning Herald yesterday and noticed you are moving to Melbourne soon.”
2. (How you can help them personally) “We can offer you a reliable removal service between Sydney and Melbourne. (Get the word “you” in there)
What sets us apart is __________ (or)
What you get from us that no-one else offers is………
I would firstly suggest we connect on linkedin. Please feel free to accept and do let me know when and how I can best assist you when you are ready to move.”
It’s easy to find something out about prospects nowadays to accommodate Point 1
“The Most Practical Online Telesales Course Ever Written”
I promise that every salesperson who undertakes this 12 week course online will be making more sales by the end than ever before.
Yes, it is my 20 years of research and practical experience in one course I leave this legacy for you.
There are 6 modules which I recommend you do over 12 weeks. Each module has quizzes and tasks so you implement what you just learnt. You will be required to get all the quizzes right before you can move on to the next section. It covers how to make every type of call – outbound, inbound, follow -up calls to inactive customers, existing customers, sales made, quotes and mail-outs. The call scripts you generate will be marked by me personally.
Check out the content details on the link below
Online Telesales Course Details
As the leader in telesales training in Australia I am constantly looking for more effective ways to do cold calling and telephone sales generally. I was blown away by the information I learnt from a speaker called Sam Richter at the National Speakers Association conference in San Diego which I attended a couple of weeks ago. I can’t wait to share this with you as it can relate so well to sales.
1. You know, if you have read any of my newsletters, that I advocate finding out something about the prospect before calling so you can make a cold call a warm call. Well, now it’s easy to find out about a company or a person by using google filters.
For example search in google for a company name like “Trend Micro”. If you write it in inverted commas it will come up top and save you time going through all the irrelevant searches that come up. Then click on “News” at the top, then click on “Search Tools” at the top for most recent news and all the latest articles written about the company or by the company will appear. You can then start your call with “I just did a google search on your company and saw your latest article about _____. That’s really interesting. I’m curious, how did that affect you?” or “What happened exactly?” Often the prospect has not even seen the article himself and will be asking you more about the content. You are then engaged in a conversation about them which is just what you want to build rapport.