Making the Sale: 3 Cold Calling Tips


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If cold calling is part of your job description, you can relate to Will Smith’s character, Chris Gardner, in the movie “Pursuit of Happyness.” Call after call, attempting to get a foot in the door, he was shot down time and again.

Until that unexpected moment when he skipped all the names on his corporate call list and went straight to the top. When that impulsive move elicited Chris’s first positive response—from the CEO, no less—even people who haven’t experienced cold sweating through cold calls could feel the victory the real Chris Gardner must have felt.

Making cold calls to create hot leads is difficult for anyone, but especially so for people who are new to the sales game. It’s difficult to call a perfect stranger out of the blue to tell him all the reasons he should spend money on your products or services.

However, cold calling is an effective tool for building clientele and your business, making it a skill that’s valuable to master. Or, at least, adapt to so you can do it with confidence instead of stuttering through a panic attack.

Dip a Toe in with Pre-Qualified Leads

True cold calling is picking up the phone and calling a stranger to whom you’d like to sell goods or services. You don’t even know if he’s interested in buying from your company or if his budget will allow him to purchase from you.

Start out with pre-qualified leads—people who have expressed an interest in at least learning more about products or services similar to yours. The best “warm” leads are obtained through lead companies. If you’re in the insurance business, for example, you’d contact insurance lead companies like QuoteWizard to obtain contact information for people who are in the market for life, home or auto insurance. Then all you do is make the call and make the sale.

No Script Reading

Little else can turn off a lead like an emotionless pitch that’s obviously being read from a script. Sure, you need to know what you’re going to say, but prospective clients would rather have an actual conversation with you rather than being talked at. advises that you practice if you’re not comfortable winging it without a script. Rehearse questions you have for the prospect and rehearse the answers you should have ready for questions he may have for you. Do role playing with friends, relatives or even co-workers to give you a chance to perfect an easy conversational style.

Do a Little Research

Know whom you’re calling and what he needs before you make the call. Research can be used to personalize your call, which will put your prospect at ease and make him more receptive to your sales pitch, according to Inc.

Peruse prospective clients’ websites, study their competitors and take note of stories on their companies you might find in trade journals or the media. If you learn all you can about a prospect before contacting him, it will seem more like calling an acquaintance than a cold call—and he will be impressed with your knowledge of his company and business.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Flavio Martins
Flavio Martins is the VP of Operations and Customer Support at DigiCert, Inc., a leading provider of enterprise authentication services and high-assurance SSL certificates trusted by thousands of government, education, and Fortune 500 organizations. Flavio is an award-winning customer service blogger, customer service fanatic, and on a mission to show that organizations can use customer experience as a competitive advantage win customer loyalty. Blog: Win the Customer!


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