C Is For Cold Calling

Picking up the phone and talking to people you don’t know in order to try and sell them your products and services is something that most small business owners dread – and yet, most would consider cold calling or telemarketing to be a relatively easy way to get business through the door. 

Whether you choose to use a company like us to do cold calling for you or do it yourself, this is one marketing method that I think most of us will consider doing at some point. I know I certainly tried it for Exceptional Thinking back in the early days. 

If you’re going to use cold calling as a marketing method for your business, here are a few of the things you need to know to make it work well for you: 

1.    Cold Calling works best if you can get to a “yes” or a “no” straight away from the person you’re speaking to. Let me give you an example of this – if I asked you whether or not you need a printer right now, you could pretty much tell me whether you do or you don’t, can’t you?  

If, on the other hand I asked you whether you needed someone to manage your server for you, it would be much harder for you to give me a yes or a no answer. The answer you would probably give would be more likely to be “I’m not sure” or even “What is a server?” 

The more you have a product or service that is easy to understand in just a word or a sentence, the more likely cold calling is to work for you. 

2.    My second tip is the art of persistence. If you think you’re going to speak to the whole of your contact list first time you call them, think again. If we’re calling 100 contacts, we’re only likely to speak to about 25 of them the first time round – we’re going to need to go back and be persistent to get through to the rest of them.  

You’re going to need to get it into your head that you’re going to have to call and keep calling until you either run out of patience or get through to the person you’re trying to speak to. 

3.    The third thing you need to do is learn tricks and techniques to get through the gatekeeper, otherwise known as the receptionist or the PA. These people are masters at keeping you away from the person you actually want to speak to. You need to develop techniques to get around this. 

One of the most effective techniques that we’ve found is to ask for an email address. That way, when you call back you can refer to the email you’ve sent and you’re more likely to be put through. 

4.    Write yourself a script – I say this in the loosest sense – by a script I don’t mean something where you read from it. What I mean is having enough notes in front of you so that when you do get through to the right person, you’re not floundering for what to say. You’ll be amazed by how often you forget your phone number or your email address, so have this written down in front of you so that you can refer to it when you need to. 

5.    Cold Calling can be very demoralising especially when you’ve heard 10 no’s in a row. Make sure that you do plenty to keep you motivated. Call in small batches of 10 rather than one huge batch of 50 and reward yourself little and often to keep yourself motivated. 

If you’re thinking of trying some cold calling for your business, you might be interested to know that we have courses running next week (22nd-26th March 2010) that you might like to come to – more details below.

About the author:
Exceptional Thinking provides advice and help to small businesses on their marketing and to people setting up in business.
My website is at: http://www.exceptionalthinking.co.uk


Related Articles:

Leave a Reply