Finding cold calling techniques that work for you and your team may seem like finding a needle buried in a haystack. When you consider the vast number of ideas, techniques, and strategies that do not work, it is easy to get discouraged in your search to find the ones that do. Use the tips and tricks outlined in this guide to enhance the strategy, structure, and success of your cold calling protocol:
Start with the Script & Color Within the Lines
The “wing it” approach should never be used when cold calling any prospective or existing customer. When calling a warm lead, you have a little more leniency to work with overall. However, even in those exceptional situations, you should still base your pitch and presentation on a well-crafted yet simple call script.
It is better to breathe life into the script than to make it sound like a robotic program made the phone call. It is just as important, though, to exercise moderation in this regard. There are plenty of opportunities to be clever and creative without completely breaking through the boundaries outlined by your sales script - or making your client uncomfortable.
Cut to the Chase with Style and Taste
During the typical cold call, you might assume that anyone who does not hang up on you is immediately interested in what you told them. This is not the case. Some may just want to show you respect and decency until you reveal the purpose of your call. Time is of the essence, which is why it is imperative for you to cut to the chase as quickly as possible.
In the best-case scenario, a simple introduction should transition into a closing statement. Using excessive words can get in the way – especially when you panic and rush to answer questions such as “What exactly do you want?” or “Why did you call me?”
Find creative ways to show respect and tact as you tastefully guide the call from the opening to the closing without hesitation.
Stick to the Schedule of Follow-Up Calls
Another set of cold calling techniques that work shifts the focus towards your callbacks. The initial call may or may not go as smoothly as you expected. However, if the prospect accepts a callback opportunity, take it seriously. Be mindful of the date and time you promise to call back and stick to your schedule.
It may seem like an insignificant point to customers who barely cared enough about your initial presentation. Making that callback as scheduled will separate you from most other cold callers who never planned on following through with their promise. Even if the prospect did not care about your pitch during the initial call, fulfilling your promise to call them back may impact their buying decision more than you realize.
Change the Perspective from Sales Pitch to Research
As soon as the prospect answers the phone or you pick up the line, the worst thing you can do is dive exclusively into your sales pitch. One of the simplest cold calling techniques that work is to put yourself in the caller’s shoes. When a telemarketer calls you and immediately dives into their sales pitch, how do you react? You may entertain them for a moment, but chances are that you will hang up the phone rather quickly.
Take the same hypothetical situation and change the ending.
A telemarketer calls you and immediately asks you effective probing questions to find out about your specific needs. Once you answer the questions, you notice that he or she skillfully matches your needs to a solution offered by their company. That is where the “sales pitch” can elevate from a conversation to a presentation. When you are conversing with your prospect, view that part of the call as a research session. Take the time to ask questions and detect direct and indirect clues. You can then use everything that you learned about the potential customer during the “research stage” of the call to close the sale.
Manual Dialing Will Cap Your Potential
Some cold callers prefer the “old school” way of contacting prospects and existing customers – a notepad, a writing utensil and a telephone waiting to be dialed. It is true that you can experience moderate success with this setup. However, the odds are against you simply because of the inefficiency of your calling system.
Studies show that you need a list of 600 prospects just to make 2,000 calls and preserve your call-to-conversation ratio. With an automated dialing or predictive dialer solution, your team can focus more on handling calls than physically making them. In addition, you should invest in a software package that allows them to document each call without having to rely too heavily on the “pen and pad” scenario.
There is Nothing Wrong with Outsourcing
“Outsourcing” may seem like a taboo concept to some business owners – especially those who are eager to handle the workload on their own without passing the baton elsewhere. However, if you want to refresh your calling campaigns and apply cold calling techniques that work, you should seriously consider outsourcing to lighten the load for your employees
In addition to saving a considerable amount of money in overhead expenses and payroll, outsourcing your cold calling will allow you to reinvest that allocated revenue to more profitable parts of your business. For instance, perhaps you will be able to afford to offer your hourly and salaried employees more flexible shifts and weekly schedules without sacrificing availability.
The key is to focus on the strategy used for outsourcing the work. What is the primary objective? Do you want to outsource your cold calling overall or just one specific type (i.e. B2B, B2C, outbound, inbound, etc.)?
You can refresh your cold calling team members by reducing the weight of your overall call load. Doing so will allow them to focus more on the quality of each call handled more than the quantity of calls handled each shift.
The Bottom Line
Cold calling techniques that work are difficult to apply for call centers that are stuck in their ways. The bottom line is that you must be willing to invest in change to benefit from that change. Allow the experts here at ChaseData to help you develop a well-structured plan, and you will be surprised by the positive impact it has on your productivity and profitability.