• Self-introductions- Who in the group is selling a product? Service? Not yet sure they will start a small business and hense still using cold calling for job search purposes?
• What is cold calling? Making calls to people whom you do not know directly in order to connect with them and present a good or service.
• What is the purpose of cold calling? To build awareness of your product or service. To book an appointment for a face to face meeting.
2. WHY COLD CALLING IS ESSENTIAL
• Cold calling enables you to tap the market for your product or service
• Cold calling enables you to be pro-active- effectively connecting with people who can decide to purchase your product or service.
• Cold calling can produce leads to other people or companies who may buy from you.
• Cold calling can lead to meetings that offer you insights into your market and offer information you need to more effective and efficient.
• Cold calling enables you to keep up with competition-if they are directly reaching your target market, so must you...
3. IF COLD CALLING IS SO IMPORTANT, WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT?
• We traditionally do not like to “bother” people-cold calling, when done in a telemarketing manner can be intrusive and annoying.
• It can be difficult to know whom within an organization you should contact.
• It can take a lot of effort to reach your target contact-your message may not be returned and it can be difficult to reach people “live”.
• If you are not prepared (with a simple and effective sales pitch including information about your offering), you can mess up the call (and be embarrassed ;(
• Although you will not encounter rudeness (I sincerely hope), you may experience repeated rejection (remember, this is not a reflection of you)
4. W-5 OF COLD CALLING
WHO? Your objective must be to reach the decision makers within target organizations. Those people in a position to decide to buy your product or service or make final decision. There is where research is essential-truly understanding the business of the companies that your are targeting.
WHAT? From the moment you connect, your cold call is about selling. Please –no hard sell-keep it short and to the point. If you have a referral name, use it. If you know information about the company and can relate the company’s needs to your offering, do it. It helps to have a script helps to have a script, understand the companies “pain” ask if you have reached the person at a good time and commit to set up an appointment face-to-face.
WHERE? Start with a target company list- you can build this via research in the company’s in your space (specific industry or meeting your desired criteria) Remember, your likely have a product or service that these organizations need or want. By offering solutions to their challenges, your were effectively assisting them achieve their corporate objectives. (be confident- stand up and the targeted company your are calling on will benefit from using your product or service)
WHY? Relying only on passive ideas (hoping the target market companies will read you ads and hear about your from word-of-mouth) is a big long-term risk for failure. You will create better results by differentiating your product from competing products by reaching decision makers with an effective and efficient message.
WHEN? Make calls when you are most likely to reach your target contacts (note: very senior people may be in early or work late). Book at least 2 hours a day for networking and marketing calls. This is hard work, do it when you are most energized and positive and take breaks when needed.
5. TIPS FOR COLD CALLING
• Expect rejection- you may find that one in ten calls are successful- keep this in mind, strategize to work smart (not just hard) and note that is a numbers game- good sales people understand the importance of lots of prospects in the funnel all the time.
• Be prepared! Research, research, research-know whom you are target companies are and understand the needs of these organizations. Write a script in advance (remember to customize it) and practice it until it sounds natural.
• Increase your chances of reaching your target contact. Ask for help from staff, leave persuasive messages, be reachable yourself, use a referral name in your message. Try to reach people live (it may take more calls than you may think).give people who have not returned your calls an opportunity to call you back (24-48hrs) May want to use some light humour in your message (be careful)
• Be creative- think outside the box in order to turn a “no” in a “yes” –would the company like to see a proposal regarding how you can assist them to achieve their results. Would they like to a “free consultation” of your product or service?
6. EXAMPLES OF WHERE COLD CALLING HAS WORKED
1. September 2010 I had found a card for a roofing company and had called it to seek the opportunity to grow their business via effective and efficient tools for newsletter, social media etc. January 29,2011 received a phone from them regarding assisting them in growing the commercial business. That is a 5 month window. It goes to show that they were not ready then, but they kept my information and called when they were ready.
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