With social media on the rise and the new norm of selling, is cold calling dead?

People are increasingly hooked on technology – from social media to emails – as a means of interaction. Yet, nothing compares to picking up the phone and having a conversation with somebody.

Cold calling isn’t for every business, but it could be right for you. It could provide a competitive advantage for you over salespeople that avoid picking up the phone.

In this blog, I will discuss the challenges of cold calling and five tips for overcoming them.

Cold calling is not cold anymore.

You no more have to rely on chance to get a warm lead. There are simple techniques for checking on the interaction that a prospect has with your brand. Communicating with a prospect on social media is a significant first step. Leave them a comment or two and connect with them through LinkedIn. By the time you make the call, your name will be recognisable to the prospect. So, your conversation should be more personalised, and therefore, warmer than a cold call. You shouldn’t need a script to make a dialogue. Instead, ask about particular pain points. Be curious and listen more than you speak to understand how you can help the prospect.

Cold calling is excellent for qualifying leads.

Salespeople who enjoy cold calling get through many objections at an early stage. But good qualifying skills at the start means that they spend minimal time with prospects that don’t fit their goals. It is more efficient to spend a few minutes on a call than days of sending emails to a potential client that isn’t the right fit for what you do. If cold calling is something you’re not doing, but you’d like to do, set time aside for it each week and be open to new approaches to sales.

If cold calling isn’t your bag, try cold video-ing.

Yes, I made up a word! Cold video-ing. If you’re getting poor results from cold calling, try leaving video messages for your prospects. LinkedIn allows you to create a native video within its messaging feature. The video needs to be under one minute long, but you can pack a lot of impact in that time. There are other platforms for creating high-impact videos for sales prospecting. Loom and YouTube unlisted videos are great for longer videos that you might want to resend to a few prospects. They might not be as personalised as a native LinkedIn video. But they beat sending an email or your dreaded cold call – and the response rates are high!

Here are 5 top tips to increase cold calling success.

I’ve added these tips that I shared on my Sales Insights with Sarah podcast episode, “Increase Your Cold Calling Success | 5 Top Tips.

  1. Do your research 

Understand your buyer persona, the industry and type of business that you want to target. Be clear on how you can add value to them so that you can provide value straight away.

  1. Get clear on your intentions 

Be clear on the purpose of the call. Communicate this with the prospect as soon as you can during your call. For example, please don’t waste time on extensive small talk. Introduce yourself and then explain your reason for calling with a clear message on how you can help them.

  1. Have a unique value proposition

A value proposition is the promise of value that you deliver to your customers. It is the primary reason why a prospect will seek you out and not one of your competitors. Have a clear idea of what you can promise your potential client so that you quickly get their attention on a call.

  1. Position the price 

Many salespeople are uncomfortable discussing price with prospects. If you have a highly transactional product or service, you could discuss the price on the first call. In this case, discussing price early on is a good qualifier and sets expectations for the buyer. For products and services that need a consultative approach, and the price depends on several factors such as solution complexity, company size and so on, you could illustrate based on past work.

  1. Ask powerful questions

Most businesses don’t spend enough time asking their customers questions. When you ask open questions, you get to the bottom of your prospects’ pain points. You gather pertinent data that allows you to help them solve their challenges. It could be that your questions reveal that your solution isn’t the right fit for that prospect. At least, you know this early on in the sales process and remove them from the funnel. By asking great questions to gather information, you can qualify on a much deeper level.

Cold calling is anything but dead!

Using these five tips and integrating videos where you can, you can use cold calling as a tactic to grow your sales pipeline and ultimately, your revenue. With modern tools and sales techniques, cold calling is not dead at all. Sales calls are just another tool in your 2021 toolkit.

If you would like to know more about how you and your team can boost your sales strategies and techniques, please contact me.