Whether it’s cold-calling a client who had shown interest in your product or simply making a follow-up call to a client who just purchased your services, one thing is for sure. Calling customers on the phone can sometimes be nerve-racking, and any sales or marketing rep can attest to it. However, it becomes easier if you’re well organised, time it right, and employ the right strategies while at it.
To help you avoid common pitfalls of cold-calling, here are eight tips you can use when and before calling customers or prospects.
Why You Need To Get It Right During Cold Calls
With reliable research suggesting that cold-calling has only a 2.5 success rate on average, it pays to get it right during calls. That’s if you want to make the time you spend talking to prospects and customers worth your while.
Let’s brush up on a few tips that can help ensure just this.
1. Make Sure You Know Their Names
Yes, you will need to get to know them in the future, but for now, find out their name, and spell it right. It’s hard to be at a loss for words when talking to a prospective client when you call them by their name. It’s also a good way of connecting with your prospect if you have their name correct.
2. Establish A Connection
During cold-calling, establishing a connection with a customer is crucial, and can come in many ways. More often than not, it starts from getting their name right, being polite, jovial, and smiling with your voice.
You can also ask a general question about the product or service you’re selling, or relate a personal experience to them. Especially when reaching out to prospects, it’s also important to be clear, direct, and enthusiastic about what you’re selling to them.
3. Be Professional
When on the phone with a client or a prospect, it pays to act professionally, giving them a polished, warm, and friendly experience. There are many ways to present yourself professionally and come across as trustworthy.
For instance, you can connect to them in a non-confrontational way, explaining your product in simple terms, and letting them know how the product would make their life easier. As much as it helps to crack a joke, it’s best to keep it short and sweet if you can – watching that you don’t overdo it.
4. Practice Active Listening
Of course, you’ll probably be trying to convince the customer to purchase your product or service. But unless you’re actively listening to the feedback that you’re receiving, things could easily go into smoke. It can be hard to catch the customer’s interest or convince them to think about it, let alone close the sale.
Before Making Calls:
5. Rehearse Or Have A Script Ready
Nothing is more important than being prepared before making cold calls. And unless you’re a master of what you’re selling, practicing what to say comes in handy, especially when it comes to the cold call introduction. Better yet, having a script ready before you call a customer can help to make the entire experience go more smoothly.
6. Know The Appropriate Time To Call:
Nothing can be more annoying than receiving a call from a sales rep at 3 am in the morning, or 10 am when you’re super busy at work. Picking the right time is a crucial component of cold-calling. In this case, you will want to avoid calling at night or in the evening unless you are extremely good at your job.
If possible, sometimes it pays to send an email or text message to the customer, asking about the time they’re most comfortable receiving a call from you.
7. Get A Virtual Local Number So Customers And Prospects Will Recognise The Area Code
Selecting the right time to call is only half the battle. It’s also vital that you choose a phone number that makes it easier for your potential customers or prospects to recognise.
Now, your customer or prospect could be located in a different region or country. This means that if you call them with your primary contacts, they could be adamant about picking up, perhaps thinking that it’s probably a scam.
Thankfully, it is fairly easy to get local VoIP phone numbers for any region, state, or city these days. When you call from a virtual local number, your prospect or customer can recognise the area code, making it more likely that they’ll confidently pick up your call and speak to you. These numbers make it easy to manage every contact and build a local presence in just about any area. Plus, they can also help keep your personal contacts private.
8. Have A Good Reason For Calling
The last thing you want to do is call someone without a good reason to do so. For instance, it makes little sense to call someone who has no previous interaction with your business, trying to sell them your products or services. But if they had accessed your website, browsed through your offerings, and even left their contacts, such a prospect or customer is more likely to listen to what you have to say.
Cold-calling is pretty much alive and is an effective strategy for acquiring new leads, new customers, and driving sales. But it’s not always a walk in the park. Luckily, the above few tips can come in handy if you’re planning to use cold calls as a way to grow your business.