As a professional sales person, I am always working on improving, especially on skills outside of my comfort zone. In my opinion, there is no better habit to embody in this regard, than simply, to go for it!
When thinking about the Sales Prospecting Activities I like least, cold calling and asking for referrals are at the top of the list.
Cold Calling is a task that, many of us find uncomfortable. I can think of any number of things I’d rather do than cold calling. Wouldn’t you rather:
- Wait in line at the DMV (Prospecting Opportunity)
- Sit in traffic while fighting the urge to scream (Dial for Sales)
- Wrestle an Alligator (Strategize how to deal with an unfriendly Prospect)
- Encounter a Grizzly Bear (Consider how to differentiate yourself from the competition)
- Get a Root Canal (Never answer another useless RFP!)
The truth is, you don’t have to let the thought of cold calling put you in a cold sweat. Like most things, it’s all about your mindset, approach and attitude. Retrain your brain as they say. Stop avoiding the task. When we don’t like something, it automatically moves to a low priority on our “To-Do” list. We dodge it all costs. Instead, find comfort in the uncomfortable and attack it head on. Give yourself a daily goal of 5 or 10 cold calls that you must complete by 11:00 AM. Hold yourself accountable for hitting these goals and completing them on time. Do the behavior! You will see immediate results:
- You will handle each call a little better than the one previous.
- Your mindset will change – it will become easier and you are more emotionally detached.
- By the end of the week, you will have nailed your Cold Call Script and get to the right people faster.
- By month end, you will be more comfortable with the process and your Sales leads will have increased and your confidence will be renewed.
Here’s a Script to get you going.
- Introduction: (pick something out of the ordinary) “Did I catch you at a bad time?”
- Mini contract for the cold call: “It might help if I briefly told you what I do. Then you can decide if we should continue talking or end the call”
- 30 Second Commercial:
- Introduction: “I’m Tracy with WeSuite, a Leading provider of sales process management software to electronic security, alarm & fire dealer industries and integrators. We make you money!”
- Pain Indicators: “Typically we work with integrators and alarm companies because we know how painful it is to not have a centralized database with parts and proposals working together. You hate not having permanent, secure record of all prospects. It’s frustrating to have an inconsistent process throughout your company.”
- Benefit Statement: “We seamlessly manage the entire Sales process from your initial contact, straight through to the contract. WeSuite is the paperless, on-the-go solution you and your team have been wishing for.”
- Hook questions to explore pain indicators: “I see, tell me more”, “That’s significant. Has that been a problem for long?”
- Close for an appointment: “What you describe is a serious problem. I don’t know if I can help, but we have faced similar dilemmas with other companies. Would it make sense to invite me over for half an hour so that we could discuss your specific situation?”
- Post Sell: (Ensure the appointment will be kept) “Pencil or pen?”
- Up-Front Contract for the Appointment: (Reach mutual agreement on meeting agenda. Contract should be clear and concise without mutual mystification) “When we get together for the 30 minutes on the 23rd, I’d like to get a clearer picture of your sales staff’s problems with referrals along with other concerns. You will probably want to ask me questions about my company and my services. At the end of our discussion, we will decide either to go no further because one of us believes that there is no fit or we will decide to discuss the particulars of how we can solve your problems. Are you ok with that?”
Challenge: Step out of your comfort zone and use this format for your next 50 cold calls and let us know how it goes!