Having the greatest idea, product or plans in the world are meaningless unless you can convince someone to buy from you. You might say well I can’t stand sales people because they are pesky and self-serving. I don’t want to be that guy! Perhaps you are right? However without sales nothing happens in your business. Have you noticed that the people who make the most money are typically in sales or own their own business? If you want to make a mediocre income and avoid sales then you better get back to watching Dancing with the Stars because this website is not for you. If you want to have a business that actually makes a lot of money it’s time to roll up your sleeves and develop a sales plan. You might be saying well I’m going to use social networks and SEO to generate revenue. That is a component of sales but it is not enough. Social networks serve a purpose but eventually you will have to leave the comforts of your computer screen and actually speak to people.
When you finally get to talk to a prospect you need to be ready to make your point quickly about how your business can benefit them. Cold calling companies is the best way to hone your message and find new customers. I will be the first person to tell you it is NOT easy. There are no guarantees. There are no secrets either. You simply need a plan, contact list, phone and be ready to work hard.
Cold calling is an excellent way of contacting businesses for work. Make no mistake about it though. You will probably get one lead for every 100 phone calls. This sounds daunting but when you make a sale it is the most rewarding and fulfilling feelings you will have in your business. When I started my IT consulting business in 2002 which was right after the DOT COM bubble had burst. Everyone in IT was being laid off and the job market was bleaker than it is today for IT people. I spent the first four months doing nothing but calling companies. Then one day I received a call back from a client that I had left a voicemail for three months prior. Then other companies started calling me back little by little. A year later while most of the IT people I knew were still not working I had a steady income through multiple client accounts.
The reason I think you should learn Cold Calling is because it gives you complete control over the destiny of your business. You are not dependent on websites, social networks or anyone. Once you realize the business is making it because of your efforts alone you will always be in business. Here are proven tips that will help give you the edge in business longevity:
Write down the points you want to make about your business. Focus on how your company provides value to clients. People are busy and on first contact you do not have much time to make your case. Try to keep the number of points to around three or four.
- Write a script of what you want to say and practice to the point where you have it memorized.
- Envision the phone call taking place. Practice holding the phone and giving your sales pitch. Be sure to look at a blank wall or desk so you can stay focused. There is nothing worse than be distracted while you are making a sales call.
- If you get through to a voice mail or the actual contact keep it short. Everybody is busy so state your name and business. Then briefly tell the person how they will benefit from your offerings.
- Ask the potential customer if you can drop off a sales brochure or card at their office. Depending on how the call is going ask to have a short meeting so that you can show them everything you mentioned from your script. If you get a meeting make sure you get the customer talking about pain points they are experiencing or areas of business they are lacking in. Then repeat what they said to ensure you understand their points. Finally offer up solutions that help resolve their issues.
- Pretend you are talking with a friend that you want to help. You are in business to help people by providing pragmatic solutions to their issues. By making their lives easier you will be able to make a sale.
Check back next week for part two of 15 Proven Steps to Increase Business by Cold Calling.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article.