What is a Cold Call?
Cold Call Definition
Cold calling is a sales tactic whereby a business (typically a sales rep) will call a potential client they’ve never interacted with before.
Typically this would be done over the phone, but the term is often used more loosely to describe an initial point of contact between a sales rep and new prospect they’ve never interacted with before, whether it’s over the phone or via email.
Is Cold Calling Still Effective?
People often hear the term “cold call” and shudder. For those working in sales, the high rejection rates, rude comments, and energy required for cold calling can be exhausting.
However, there’s something to be said for this tried-and-true sales tactic as it’s still used by almost every business. While it may not work every time, cold calling can still be effective as part of an overall sales cadence.
How to Succeed with Cold Calls
Cold calling can seem intimidating to any sales rep, but it doesn’t have to be. While it seems cliché, the most important tip is to be prepared.
Cold calls are often met with sales objections, so knowing how to turn the situation around or deal with it professionally is essential.
But if you want to stay one step ahead of everyone else, the trick is to know how to stop sales objections before they even happen.
- Research your potential client beforehand so you know exactly who you’re talking to.
- Prepare a straight and to the point script, with additional information outlined to answer questions or dig in deeper regarding their needs and why you’re the right one to provide help.
- Figure out the best time to call. No one will want to talk extensively about your product on a Friday afternoon, so make sure you schedule cold calls appropriately.
- Open with a strong line. If the person on the other end thinks you don’t know what you’re talking about, who you’re talking to, or that you’re just trying to hit a sales quota, they likely won’t want to chat. This goes back to our first point: do your research, and know how to quickly show off your product in a positive light.
- Always follow up. Not everyone will answer, and you may get sent to voicemail. That’s okay. You can try calling again, sending them an email, and using video prospecting instead to catch their attention.
Why is Cold Calling Done by Sales Professionals?
According to LinkedIn, conversion rates for cold calls hovers around 2%. This is an unacceptably low rate to many sales teams, but only if you use sales conversations as your sole metric.
If you’re able to make successful connections that you can follow up on later, then that can be considered a success. Cold calling shouldn’t be defined by its reputation.
This sales tactic is about playing the long game. Sure, people may initially reject you, but if you can follow up on those missed connections and sell your sales pitch successfully, it ends up being a win. Making connections is incredibly important when it comes to sales, and that’s why cold calling will always be utilized.