Sales are the core of any business. They are one of the main areas in charge of generating growth. However, it’s not an easy task. If you are a small business and still haven’t developed your networking, you will probably rely on cold calls.
Businesses usually try to develop their local sales network. The meaning local can be attributed to industry or geography. If you want to learn more about local sales networks, click here.
- Being too familiar
- Using a cold calling script
- Focusing on pitching before establishing a rapport
- Tips to Improve Your Cold Calls
- The Bottom Line
Being too familiar
Cold calls shouldn’t be ice cold, but they shouldn’t be overly familiar either. While the sales representative should strive to build a rapport with the prospect, maintain a professional relationship between the two parties.
Don’t talk to a candidate as if you are talking to an old friend, but rather a professional interacting with fellow professionals.
There is a thin line between building a rapport and being too familiar, and every salesperson strives to build a rapport. If the client warms up and starts talking to you like an old friend, then you can adjust your tone, but don’t let the familiarity come from your end of the conversation.
Strive to use the prospect’s proper title throughout the conversation. If the client is a DR. or Prof., use these appropriate titles throughout the discussion. Also, keep your salutation and greeting formal. Instead of using ‘what’s up, John?’ use’ Hi John, how are you today?’ Also, avoid using inappropriate non-official language throughout the conversation.
Stick to the official language, and only adjust your tone and attitude if the prospect warms up to you and shifts the language to an informal one.
Using a cold calling script
Imagine this: you are in the middle of a high-engaging meeting and receive a call from an unknown number. The caller on the other end goes straight to a scripted pitch’ My name is Alex, from ABC company, and I was calling to talk to you about sales automation technique which…’ and the caller continues to pitch.
This sales script is rude, interruptive, and aggressive, and a total turnoff to a prospect.
Having a script is a good thing, as it helps you steer the conversation towards your goal or objective, which is to get the prospect to another opportunity to sell. However, don’t follow your script like it is cast on stone.
Be flexible, responsive, and anticipative towards your prospect’s needs. If a prospect feels like a robot is addressing them, they won’t hesitate to hang up, which will cost you many potential leads.
Focusing on pitching before establishing a rapport
Most cold callers follow a specific order, and the order is ‘My name is ABC, from XYZ Company, and I am calling today to talk about XYZ product which does ABC for your company.’ This script explains why the success rate of most cold callers is 1%.
These opening lines are all about the caller, my name, my company, my product, and this shows why most prospects disconnect the call, or the kind ones will politely reject your call.
Instead of focusing on selling, establish a rapport in the first 30 seconds.
Mentioning that your client referred you is an intelligent way to get a prospect’s attention. However, don’t lie, as this is the foundation of a failed marketing strategy.
You can break the ice with a script like ‘Hi Alex, my name is XYZ from ABC company, how are you today? Give the prospect a few minutes to respond before continuing. Then continue:
‘One of my clients mentioned that you might need assistance with your digital mark. If this is a strategy, is this a good time to discuss your current strategy?’
This script is likely to get a better response than ‘I’m calling you today to talk about my digital marketing product, which does ABC for your company.’
Another great way to build a rapport is to mention that you help companies similar to your prospect automate their sales process.
An introduction like ‘My name is ABC and I help SMEs like your company automate their sales process is likely to get a good reception. This introduction communicates your value proposition in the introduction, and most prospects are less likely to end the call.
Tips to Improve Your Cold Calls
Some tips to ensure you don’t sound scripted include:
Tone down your tone
Every salesperson wants to sound enthusiastic, optimistic, and excited on the phone. However, not all prospects need this kind of excitement.
Speak in a professional, natural, and calm tone. Most prospects associate a high pitch with a fake enthusiastic sales rep, which might cost you a potential client.
Slowing down is another excellent strategy to stay off-script
Don’t speak 100 words in a second, as this will overwhelm a prospect, and some might end the call.
Also, when you talk faster, you don’t give the prospect time to talk, which is the major downfall of most marketing officials. Thus, breathe, speak slowly, give your prospect time to understand and respond to your information. Don’t fill every quiet moment by talking, and this will make the conversation one way.
Pause throughout the conversation
Speaking for 2 minutes nonstop shows your prospects that you don’t care about their pain points but be concerned about closing a deal. After introducing yourself, pause for a few seconds to listen to the prospect.
Throughout the conversation, hesitate to give the prospect time to speak. Remember, the aim of the cold call is a fact-finding mission to fill the gap on the customer’s pain point.
Ask open-ended questions throughout the conversation.
You uncover other selling opportunities that you may not have identified during your initial research by asking questions. Also, asking open-ended questions engages the prospect, eliminating one-way conversation, which is significant mistake salespeople make.
Don’t ask closed-ended questions, as you will be forced to talk more to fill the silence, and the more you talk, the more your prospect is turned off. The aim of every cold call should be to talk less and listen more.
Avoid interrupting prospects
Sales reps using a scripted template always strive to push the conversation towards closing a deal.
However, great marketers understand that a cold call aims to get another opportunity to sell. For instance, after introducing yourself, the prospects respond that they are busy, request to call back at a more appropriate time instead of aggressively marketing your product or service.
The Bottom Line
Follow the tips and make sure you get your sales less dependent on cold calls. Increase your networking and the buzz about your company to get more passive deals.
Following this, you may be in a much better cold sales performance.