Cold calls can help with sales growth, but you have to do them right. When you’re calling someone who doesn’t have any advance knowledge about your product or service, you really have to turn on the charm and deliver a solid pitch. Your goal should be to overcome that initial hesitation that a potential customer feels and provide them with valuable information that leads to conversions. So, to help you on how to cold call effectively, here are the top four tips for you to consider.
1) Be Polite
Sure, they’re ‘cold’ calls, but you can always warm them up a bit. The number one rule in effective cold calling is to be polite, friendly, and pleasant — no matter what. You’re calling someone on their phone and taking their time. It’s up to you to not just sell them on your product or service, but also to sell yourself as a representative of your business. There’s an old sales saying that you can hear a smile through the phone, so go ahead and crack a grin while you’re chatting. Keep your pitch quick, direct, and to the point. Be cordial and upbeat while still maintaining an air of warmth and authenticity. How you speak to your potential customers is just as important as what you have to say (if not more), so work on your overall tone and cadence before you start dialing.
2) Be Confident
You can be confident without being overbearing — politeness and boldness are in no way mutually exclusive. An ideal sales pitch exudes confidence in a positive, endearing way. After all, how can you expect the person you’re calling to believe in your brand unless you do too? While your overall tone and way of speaking play a role in sounding confident, the real key is to be prepared with information. You should be able to answer questions with solid information. It should sound like you genuinely care about the company and you’re selling because you’re passionate, rather than just reading off a script to earn a paycheck. Enthusiasm goes a long way.
3) Take a Break
If you’re calling one person after another in rapid-fire succession, it’s easy to get burnt out. That fatigue can show, even if you don’t realize it. In order to stay sharp and upbeat, take a break every few calls. A good rule of thumb is to take a five-minute break every 15 calls or so. Yes, cold calling is a numbers game, so keeping your calls fast and consistent is important, but if your quality suffers, quantity isn’t going to save you. It’s better to represent your brand positively to 100% of the people you call and make less calls, than to tarnish your reputation because you were rushing a call. To improve time management, try using the QuickBooks Online time-tracking app to generate reports that show you the impact of your calls.
4) Practice Your Pitch
Even if you’ve made the same call a thousand times, rehearsing your pitch on your own time can help it to evolve. When you’re in the middle of a real call, you may not want to take risks or try new strategies. If you practice cold calling with your co-workers, you can think outside the box and come up with new additions to your pitch that can be incorporated next time you’re dialing for real. Recording your dry runs is a great way to hear what you sound like so you can make little adjustments.
When it comes to making cold calls, rejection comes with the territory. Try not to get discouraged, and instead, learn from rejections. At the same time, some rejections have no rhyme or reason — some people just don’t like getting phone calls. Maintain a positive attitude, and do your best to connect with people on a personal level. As long as you know your stuff and you keep smiling, cold calling can be a very rewarding approach to sales.