Warm up to Cold Calling
Nobody like cold calls. Not the straight commission salespeople making them or the prospects receiving them. The reality is, for most sales organizations, making cold calls is a necessity and the best way to get a product and/or service in front of potential buyers.
Unfortunately for many salespeople the 800 pound gorilla named FEAR is sitting on top of the handset theyâre about to pick up. No matter how thorough a hiring manager or HR professional is at vetting candidates, salespeople are charming, can be highly social in an interview and can effectively convey their eagerness to make cold calls and close sales. Unfortunately, once some of them are put on the front lines, they freeze up and let the fear of rejection prevent them from making the sales call.
Salespeople who are having difficulty picking up the phone and feel forced to cold call can sound like bad actors in an 80âs B movie â not believable, and basically asking the prospect to âchange the channel.â
(consider also that today, millennials entering your salesforce are less inclined to make phone calls and instead rely on email, text, mobile apps and social media sites for their daily interactions. While everyone has a mobile phone today, many people still have phone phobia!).
With that in mind we can make a safe bet youâd like to help them toss that gorilla right out of the room!. Here are five tips to best arm them for success:
Show them, donât tell themâyou canât just tell a salesperson that following a process or a script is going to work, you have to show them. Have successful salespeople within the organization share their experiences, how they overcame their fears and what the financial benefit has been.
Install a buddy systemâincent top performing salespeople to mentor newer ones by offering them overrides based on closed sales. This provides a double benefit as best practices are passed down and the new employees sees quicker financial success.
Prepare a script or call outlineâa lot of people donât like using scripts as it makes them feel like theyâll sound like a robot. While sometimes true, if it comes off that way itâs because the script is probably bad. A good script or outline does not mean it will lead to the perfect sale but simply help a salesperson practice the ideas and wording, gives them essential points that should be conveyed and prepares them for inevitable negative responses
Perfect practice makes the practice perfectâhave salespeople warm up before making live calls. You never want costly lead wasted by having someone call when theyâre not properly prepared or ready to dial. Have a designated employee field calls so they can warm up prior to calling a real prospect.
Share the success metricsâitâs critical that every salesperson knows the average number of sales calls required to close a sale. Share this information so the salespersonâs perception of rejection can be realigned from taking it as a rejection to be one step closer to making that sale. If possible, extrapolate these numbers out to show how experience and practice help shorten the call-to-close ratio and what the effect on income/commission looks like.