The strategy of cold calling to sell products and services has been around for decades. Along the way, sales professionals have developed various proven tactics to convince their audience of the value of what they’re selling.
You, as the salesperson, hold the power of information. By educating your buyers about the products and services you offer, you can convert mere prospects into actual paying customers.
However, the power has now shifted to buyers, as the internet now lets them easily access all the information they need to address their concerns, needs, and wants. Most people now find solutions to their problems by simply googling them. They have plenty of sources for information, which means they won’t be getting all their answers from brands.
It’s all digital now. But, that doesn’t mean old tactics like that cold calling are no longer relevant. Nothing will ever beat the power of human touch and personal interaction. You just need the right strategy that involves using the right words to persuade.
It’s Not About You
As discussed, the sales process has shifted from the seller to the buyer. It’s no longer about you or your products and services. It’s about the buyer and how to solve their pain points.
When cold calling a prospect, make sure to talk about them instead of what you have to offer. Why would they want to listen to someone they don’t know or don’t care about?
Talking about your company or its products isn’t going to work. Make it all about them, and they’ll be more open to discussion. Find out what their interests are, what motivates them, and what challenges they face. Tailor your offering to the prospect, not the other way around.
Do your research and utilize all the data you have about your prospect before picking up the phone. It will help you determine how to approach the conversation and make a personal connection.
What to Avoid (And What Not To)
As a salesperson, you not only need to offer buyers an opportunity to improve their lives, but you also need to provide buyers protection against potential losses.
Giving them tips on how to avoid risks and losses demonstrates that you’re on their side. Again, you’re making it about them, not you or your company.
Aside from this, using the word “avoid” in your conversation will instill a sense of urgency and fear of loss. This helps motivate potential buyers to act sooner rather than later. On top of that, fear is one of the biggest motivators that affect purchase decisions.
The Power of “Because”
Avoid requesting to discuss something with a prospect without giving a reason. When people are presented with an adequate reason for something, they are more likely to listen and thoughtfully respond to what you’re saying.
The word “because” justifies motivation for an action and can compel prospects to comply with your request. Simply put, the word “because” immediately answers one of the most important questions that a buyer will ask, “What’s in it for me?”
Buyers want to be wowed and impressed. After all, who doesn’t want to be amazed?
When people hear the word “amazing,” it automatically perks them up. According to Business Consultant Dale Furtwengler, “amazing” triggers feelings of joy and amazement. Buyers are willing to pay a premium when something fascinates them.
First Come, First Serve
People love getting ahead of others, and this is especially true for businesses.
Using the word “first” when you’re cold calling prospects denotes that you’re offering them something new that their competitors may not know about yet. It also gives buyers the feeling of exclusivity, which makes them more optimistic about your offering.
I’ll Find Out
It’s never bad to admit to not knowing something rather than pretending to know and just making up an answer. By admitting that you don’t know, you’re helping to build trust with potential customers. You’re showing humility and honesty, which are virtues that prove invaluable when nurturing business relationships.
Then again, make sure to show buyers that they asked a good question and that you’re willing to find out the exact answer for them. This will also help you avoid misrepresentations and backpedaling on promises you can’t deliver.
Be honest. Rather than plainly saying you don’t know, let them know that you’ll find out.
A simple “thank you” can go a long way when you’re establishing a connection with a stranger or building a relationship with a prospect. In fact, studies show that thanking people for their time makes them feel friendlier towards you.
Aside from explicitly thanking your prospect while you’re on the call, follow up with a thank you email that recaps the main points of your conversation. It will not just remind your prospect about what you’ve discussed over the phone but will also help them remember you.
The moment they decide to make the purchase, your name should be top-of-mind.
Mind Your Ps and Qs
Some salespeople usually use daily expressions to convey friendliness to their prospects. So, instead of using the more formal “you’re welcome,” they say, “no problem” or “no worries.”
However, the words “problem” and “worries” may suggest that under different circumstances, you wouldn’t have granted the favor or done the same thing.
Be sure to use the age-old magic words, “You’re welcome.” Or, “You’re most welcome.” This expression is your way of telling your prospect that they’re worth your time. It also avoids the use of potentially negative words like “problem” or “worries,” so this one’s a real no-brainer.
Cold calling as a sales tactic is not dead. The power has shifted, yes. But, as long as you make your prospects feel important and use the right words when communicating the value of your business, then you can close as many deals as you want.
Just be sure to keep an eye out for any potential red flags that might arise. The last thing you want to do is invest time and effort into nurturing a sales prospect that has a low likelihood of converting.