If you have the courage and gusto to use one of the oldest and boldest tricks in the book of salesmanship, then there are a few things you'll have to keep in mind to do it right.
Cold calling isn't just a game of long distance ding dong ditch. Cold calling is a science, and the following are some of the best tips for mastering that science.
Know who you're calling, and ask for them by their first name
It sounds like a no-brainer, but a staggering amount of cold callers fail before getting out of the gate when it comes to actually knowing who they intend to speak with. Calling a company is one thing, but unless you have a plan of action geared towards communicating with a specific individual, then all you're doing is wasting your time and money.
Knowing the name of the decision maker will be far more likely to get you transferred to their line than simply asking to be transferred to "the person in charge of xyz." A request with a specific first name is a call from a friend. A request without a name is a sale, and the gatekeeper's job is to shoot down sales before they take flight.
Plan on setting the next conversation instead of closing right away
First-call closes have happened, but they're an exception, not an expectation. When getting on the phone with a prospect who has never seen your face, your number one objective should be to build rapport and test the waters for a consultation.
Instead of pushing to close the sale, simply inquire as to whether or not their needs fall under the scope of your services. Honestly state the benefits of what you do, and ask if they'd be interested in speaking over the details.
Be a benefactor, not a "seller"
Your every word should be made to provide value and help the other person on the end of the line, not to try to take their money. Instead of asking for a sale, ask if they have any need for help. If you're unsure of whether or not they truly have a need for what you have to offer, then be upfront about that and they'll appreciate the honesty.
Cold calls are only as negative as you make them out to be. If you have real conviction in the value of your offer and genuinely want to provide value, then there is nothing to fear. All that a cold call has to be is a conversational check-in to see if the company could use a helping hand.
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