Effective Cold Calling in Three Steps

Michele Warg
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Even the best salespeople aren't necessarily big fans of cold calling potential clients. You can learn to make effective sales calls, however, by keeping an upbeat attitude and doing the right preparation work to make sure you make each cold call contact as productive as possible. Here are some tips on how to strategize to make great cold calls.

1. Do Your Research

Before you start cold calling, research not just which companies to call but whom to call at each company. Analyze what services and products your company offers very specifically so you can match those services and products to potential clients who can really use them. Within each targeted company, figure out who exactly has the ability to say yes to your proposal or to move it up the ladder, and put your efforts into reaching that person. Making a personal connection with each potential client can make a big difference.

2. Plan Your Script

Don't launch your cold calling without planning very thoroughly what you plan to say ahead of time. Keep your script as short as possible, and focus it on the needs of the potential client rather than on the product or service you're selling. Remember, making that personal connection is the first step, and if you succeed, your next call, which can focus on sales, isn't really going to be a cold call any longer but one that's expected and welcomed by the client. When cold calling, what you're really trying to do is get an actual appointment with the client, not push your product. As part of your script, make sure to list any objections the client might have and prepare single-answer responses to each of them, all in an effort to get that appointment.

3. Keep a Positive Attitude

Having the right attitude is key to successful cold calling. When you pick up the phone with the attitude that you are doing the customer a favor by introducing him to services and products that can make his job easier or his company more successful, you're in the right frame of mind to make the call. If you need to convince yourself of this fact, sit down and write out a list of ways in which you can bring value to the client, and have those on hand when you place your call, incorporating them into your script if they're not already there. As an added bonus, being convinced of the value you provide to your clients can help motivate you to sit down and make those calls.

Effective sales calls don't just happen on their own. If you're planning to expand your client or customer base by cold calling, you need to do far more preparation than any single cold call might reveal. All that work, however, increases the likelihood of making a true connection with the potential client and turning a cold call into a sale.

Photo courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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