Cold calling is one of the toughest tasks out there. In fact, 63% of salespeople say that cold calling is the thing they dislike the most about their jobs. So if you’re going to succeed, you have to hone your skills.
Best Cold Calling Tips for Salespeople
Here are 23 tips to master your phones and close more deals.
1. Plan all of your questions in advance.
There’s nothing worse than making a cold call without a plan. You need to go into the conversation with a good understanding of the information you need to collect and the questions that will help you uncover it.
The best salespeople are able to properly examine the prospect before the call. Then they put together a list of questions that will help them move the conversation forward. With this comprehensive list, you’ll leave no stone unturned, and you can disconnect the call with the confidence that you got the full picture.
2. Say goodbye to scripts.
While it’s good to go into the call with a strategy and a clear idea of the information you’ll need to exchange with your prospect, you should avoid using a script for the conversation.
Scripts can make your conversation seem bland and robotic, and your prospect will be able to tell that you’re scripted. Some salespeople rely so heavily on scripts that they find it difficult to improvise if the conversation goes in an unexpected direction.
3. Don’t rush the sell.
Cold calling is a delicate science. You’ll find that lots of your prospects may feel uncomfortable if they perceive your call as an intrusion. So to prevent you from starting out on the shaky ground, it’s important to take things slowly and move delicately.
Too many salespeople try to sprint to the finish line without considering their prospects’ needs. If you try to move too quickly, you’ll damage your sales statistics and close fewer deals. Remember, the best salespeople are able to read their prospects and see things from their perspectives.
4. Embrace the grind and come out on top.
Cold calling is tough, and statistics show that you’re going to face a lot of rejection. Even the world’s best salespeople can’t close 10% of the cold calls they make, so you shouldn’t let it make you disheartened.
The best salespeople can pick themselves up after they end unsuccessful calls. You might have to make 100 calls before you secure just one meeting. Even though it’s tough, you have to approach each call with the same amount of enthusiasm and energy.
5. Warm up a cold call.
Cold calling puts you at a disadvantage right away, so you have to use all of the skills in your toolset to flip the advantage. One of the best approaches is being polite and warm.
Some salespeople are able to create an immediate sense of warmth and cordiality without veering into sleaziness. This talent is a gift. You can further hone it by paying attention to the way the people around you make you feel. Identify the positive touches, and try to replicate them.
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6. Use the power of email tracking.
Lots of amazing prospecting technology is available to you. So make the most of it. Start by working alongside your marketing colleagues and developing interesting email campaigns and activity-tracking infrastructures.
You should make the most of email tracking. Before your call, you could send a cold email in advance and find out whether the prospect opened and engaged with it. This tactic is a great way to understand your prospects and their motivations.
7. Leverage automated prospecting platforms.
Lots of fantastic tools out there aim at giving salespeople a helping hand with cold calls. For example, you can find lots of AI-driven assistants that categorize your leads, based on their activity and level of interest.
These types of tools make it easier for you to focus on the warmest prospects, so you can give yourself the best chance of success. They also ensure that you make the most of your time and significantly contribute to your bottom line.
8. Use UpLead to find your prospects.
UpLead helps salespeople increase their sales. We achieve this outcome by giving you a helping hand at finding, connecting, and engaging with qualified prospects.
Our platform makes it possible to build targeted lists of prospects from a database that has over 46 million business contacts. You can search through our database, and our range of parameters will make your life easier. And our data is clean and verified, which will help you connect with prospects and close more sales. Once you have a phone number list, it’s time to move to the next step.
9. Line up your collateral.
Every salesperson should have a good handle on the marketing and sales collateral they have available to them. During the call, you should think about which collateral your prospect will appreciate and send them through quickly.
This tactic will help you move your prospect further through the sales funnel. But speed and relevance are essential, so you might want to call on one of the many platforms out there that will help you share resources with your prospects.
10. Play the numbers game.
If you’re a passionate salesperson, you’ll be raring to go on the phones. But you should take the time to create a strategy and carefully consider your targets. By developing this strategy, you can successfully earn those bonuses.
You should also think about how many calls it will take to convert a prospect. You can then deduce how many total calls you’ll need to hit your targets, as well as how much time you’ll need to dedicate to each call.
11. Craft a compelling opening statement.
Even though long scripts aren’t effective, you should still rely on some choice phrases and statements throughout your call. It’s amazing how effective the right cadence and phrasing can be.
You should draw on every resource possible to create a powerful, engaging opening statement. For example, think about how to use your elevator pitch, or speak with your colleagues and listen to the phrases they use to create an instant connection with their prospects.
12. Feel your confidence grow.
Cold calling can occasionally test your motivation. Some days, you’ll undoubtedly face one rejection after another, which can make it tough to bring the required energy to every call.
But you should be good to yourself. Try to maintain some perspective, and see how you’ve improved over time. Track the way your confidence and knowledge has grown, and draw some motivation from that growth! Even though it may not seem like it, you do grow with each call.
13. Overcome reluctance.
If you’re a new salesperson, there’s a very good chance that you’ll be intimidated about making a call, which may cause you to be reluctant. One of the biggest challenges new salespeople face is breaking through this barrier.
If you feel like you’re struggling, don’t hesitate to ask for guidance from your manager or colleagues. Rest assured that almost every successful salesperson you meet today will have felt the exact same way in your position. So they’ll -be able to offer you advice and support.
14. Watch out for trigger events.
You should watch your prospects. In particular, look for updates to eliminate the guesswork from your cold calls. For instance, you can use publicly available information to find the right moment to call and pitch your product or service.
Let’s imagine that you sell employee scheduling, and you notice that one of your prospects has hired a new head of HR. So now could be the perfect time to offer your solution during a time of transition.
15. Dissect common objections.
Every salesperson will see that patterns start emerging as they keep making calls. For instance, you’ll notice that all of the prospects you call share a few key objections.
Sometimes, your prospects will have an issue with the price of your offering. Other times, they might be concerned about a particular feature. You should identify these common objections, and learn how to deal with them. Over time, you should build a list of statistics and data that will tackle those objections.
16. Give your prospect your undivided attention.
Your prospect’s time is very valuable, and you should respect it. He or she has done you a big favor by picking up the phone, so it’s only fair to give him or her your undivided attention.
This focus will also boost your chances of performing effectively. So you shouldn’t try to multitask during your calls. Instead, you should make sure to avoid distractions as much as possible. If you’re not properly engaged, your prospect will sense it, which could harm your relationship.
17. Play to your strengths.
Every person is unique and has a distinct blend of preferences and attitudes. For example, you might find that you’re a little antisocial in the mornings, which negatively affects your ability to connect with strangers.
You should pay attention to these tendencies and try to figure out the best time and environment for cold calling. By knowing these things about yourself, you’ll have a better chance at succeeding.
18. Learn how to leave a killer voicemail.
The majority of people hesitate before leaving a voicemail. But as a cold calling expert, you have to learn how to leave a killer voicemail that engages your prospects and inspires them to call you back.
You should think about the structure of your voicemail, and leave your prospect with a call to action (CTA) at the end of the message. This CTA could be a request to call you back, or a reminder to visit your website. So experiment and learn what works best.
19. Use the power of social proof.
Humans are social animals, and we’re all acutely aware of what the people around us are doing. We monitor our peers because we want to know how they behave and whether we should follow the pack.
You should use this dynamic to your advantage. Be sure to rely on social proof and explain the successes your clients have achieved. This tactic s a very engaging and emotive way to engage with your prospects and inspire them to take action.
20. Pay attention to the clock
There are good times to make cold calls, and there are bad times to make cold calls. So make sure that you’re calling at the right time. To find the sweet spot, you should carefully consider the location and habits of your prospects.
You’ll also want to think about the optimal times to call certain prospects. You should make sure you’re prioritizing your best prospects.
21. Automate your manual tasks.
To free up as much cold calling time as possible, you should make the most of the various sales tools out there. Countless tools (such as CloudTalk.io)can take care of your more manual tasks, and they’ll keep you sane and free up your time.
There are tools out there that can help you with things like:
- Tracking prospect activity
- Categorizing and organizing prospects
- Scheduling meetings
- Sending effective emails
22. Don’t worry about silence.
It can be quite disconcerting if your prospect doesn’t audibly respond during your pitch. You might feel like he or she isn’t listening, which can cause you to lose your train of thought or mentally disengage from the call.
But don’t worry. This silence happens more than you might realize, so you should power through it. Some people listen this way, and you shouldn’t give up on a call because the other person isn’t responding. In fact, you should try to identify and understand all the types of communication out there.
23. Ask open questions.
Experienced salespeople understand that conversation is everything. While you’re engaged in an open, flowing conversation, your prospect can’t outright reject you.
You should observe the most senior salespeople find out how to keep your prospect talking. One powerful technique is to use open-ended questions that keep the conversation flowing. This tactic will also help you better understand your prospect and respond to his or her distinct needs.
Even with all of its downsides, cold calling can be a fun, diverse activity that keeps things fresh. And since effective cold callers are worth their weight in gold, make sure to keep honing your abilities. If you want a secret weapon to connect and engage with more prospects, be sure to check out UpLead today.