Warm up to cold calling
You’re looking for more business. Who isn’t? Cold calling is an inexpensive marketing tool. Here are some tips from Ted Tate, business trainer and author, to help you warm up to cold calling.
Of course, when cold calling, sales associates should scrub their databases against the Do-Not-Call Registry.
Tips for Keeping Calls Professional
1. Keep it brief.
Telemarketing is not the time to make idle conversation or to express your personal views. To do so is unprofessional. Keep your calls brief and businesslike. Show respect for other people’s time (as well as your own).
2. Use a written script.
And, have at-hand answers to some common objections so you’re ready to handle them. Don’t make your pitch from memory. Sometimes a prospect will ask an unexpected question or make an unusual remark and throw you off your pace. It’s easy to forget or fumble your words, so be prepared.
3. Limit breaks.
Pause after each call only to make brief notes on your computer, and then go to the next call quickly. Sometimes a difficult person will make your work just a little less fun by giving you a hard time. Don’t let anyone control your feelings; they belong to you, no one else. Don’t stop to think about a difficult situation; go quickly to your next call and keep your mind on the goals you plan to achieve by doing this work.
4. Set aside a regular time each week.
Decide in advance how many people you will talk to before quitting and don’t stop calling until you reach your goal. Answering machines and busy signals don’t count.
5. Be mentally prepared for, and expect, rejection.
Telemarketing is strictly a numbers game. You can’t succeed without constantly working at it. Understand that these rejections are not personal.
6. Commit to your plan.
Usually you’ll need to spend at least two to four uninterrupted hours per session to get good results. Make a commitment to doing it on a regular basis.
7. Have all your prospects’ names in front of you before starting.
If you’re setting appointments, make calls by physical area to save on travel time.
8. Work from a quiet place with your supplies and information at your fingertips.
If you’re working from home, don’t forget that noise in the background such as a television or radio, kids playing or people talking are distracting to the people you call. They mark you as an amateur and that may lessen your credibility.
9. Smile when you speak.
Believe it or not, there’s something positive that happens to the speaking quality of your voice when you smile. People tend to react to you more positively when you smile.
10. Expect a yes and assume people will be interested.
When closing, give prospects a choice instead of using a question that can be answered yes or no. For example, “Would Thursday at 3 p.m. be good, or do you prefer I see you sometime Friday?”
11. Write out several closes.
Have a list of objections and closes to overcome them. So, if the prospect makes an objection, you answer it and finish with a close. Then, if he or she makes another objection, you answer it and finish with another close. Sometimes, you’ll go through several. It’s important to be persistent, yet personable.