If you have encountered unsolicited or solicited calls from salespeople asking you to purchase their products or subscribe to their services, that is a sales strategy called cold calling.
B2B Cold calling is a marketing strategy where a sales person approaches a company they have not had prior interactions with, with the primary intention of acquainting them with the company’s products or services.
The multinational company, ‘Uber’ used the cold calling strategy with their first few customers. Travis Kalanick, the founder, said he called ten people and out of all ten three agreed to meet with him.
Fast-forward 12 years later, it is incredible how the company has grown to become one of the leading businesses in the transport industry.
When done correctly, cold calling is an effective way of adding high potential sales. But how can you do B2B cold calling the right way? Here are some of the best cold calling tips for successful sales.
1. To Script or Not to Script?
A lot of people ask the question, "Should I script my B2B cold calls or use a conversation starter that I am comfortable with?" The answer is... it depends.
A script is supposed to guide you.
Remember that successful cold calling is a two-way conversation, so instead of blindly following a script, stick to the relevant aspects of your discussion.
Even if you are following a sales pitch, do not read it like a robot. Make it sound natural like you are having a conversion with an actual human being.
Add some personality and navigate through it smartly. Talk to the prospect the way you would want someone to talk to you.
This does not mean you should be informal or inappropriate. Know your client and adjust your script according to their interests and needs.
Most importantly, be a good listener. Do not be too eager to fit what you are saying in the call that you miss the important things the client is saying.
2. Start Your Pitch Right
The first impression matters in this instance.
Therefore, create a lasting impact with an opening statement that is catchy and entertaining enough to grab the client's attention.
Organize your thoughts and words before you make the call.
You are looking for a response like, "Tell me more" - an invitation to further the conversation. With this green light, you know you are doing something right.
Do not use an opening statement like this: "Did I catch you at a bad time?" or "Do you have a minute to talk?"
Though it sounds respectful, it opens the possibility of the client turning you down. There is a 40% chance that you might not book a meeting from this opening statement.
You can use a statement like this one: "Hi Mr, XYZ. William Jones here calling you from ABC company. We work with leading companies in the mining industry all across Canada. Would you like to hear the benefits the companies that work with us enjoy?"
Now this is a winning opening statement.
3.Research, Research, Research
Do extensive research on the business prospects you intend on reaching out to.
The research will help you understand the client's business strategy, financial planning, marketing strategies, and product development.
Research helps you have:
- Clarity of purpose
- Proposals that are on track with the client’s goals.
- A straightforward and concise step-by-step process on how you will provide solutions for their problems.
- Extensive knowledge of what you are discussing.
- The confidence to communicate to the client accordingly.
- A prepared answer for whatever the client throws at you.
You need to know the kind of industry your intended client is in, the kind of proposals that are likely to attract their attention, some background about the company, and find relevant examples that will catch their attention.
You do not want to mumble or give incomplete or incorrect responses when asked questions.
4.Understand Your Craft
B2B cold calling, especially in sales, is like running into uncharted territory and conquering it with interpersonal skills.
Minor mistakes could risk losing sales. You need to practice and understand the elements of your craft.
B2B cold calling is one of the most cost-effective ways for businesses to reach new business prospects.
Keep in mind the point of making the call to the prospect is to inform them of what kind of goods and services you offer, not to sell them on an idea in the first call.
The best way to ensure you do not make a mistake is to:
- Create various methods and find the most effective one.
- Make a list of the errors you might make or have made in the past so you can avoid them.
- Listen to your colleagues as they make their calls and learn from them.
- Practice until you become great at it by taking mock sales.
Make sure that even if your prospect receives other calls that day, yours stands out.
5.Learn Confidence even in the Face of Rejection
First things first, if you have chosen a career in sales, you need to be mentally prepared for rejection.
As a human being, it is normal for negative responses and rejection to bog you down. However, if you let this affect you as a salesperson, you will eventually give up.
Do not let it affect your performance; take it as a milestone to getting to where you want to go.
At the same time, do not ignore negative comments or rejection. Understand them, face them, and learn from them because somewhere in there must be a lesson.
As Bo Bennett said, "A rejection is nothing more than a necessary step in the pursuit of success."
Here are some tips on how to cope with fear:
- Do not dwell.
- Analyze and learn the reasons for rejection.
- Find solutions to deal with objections.
- Stay positive and avoid negative voices from outside and inside.
When you master the art of bouncing back better, nothing can keep you down.