The term "cold call" has been used at least since the late 1920s. The word "call" used to refer to other means of reaching someone other than by phone. Cold-calling could refer to sending correspondence, going to a person's door, or calling someone on the phone.
Cold sales calls are an unsolicited call to one of your leads with which you have little or no prior contact. The cold call is the first effort to create a conversation and a relationship that will eventually lead to a deal.
You may be wondering why anyone would still use such an old form of sales marketing in today's age. There are many benefits to cold calling, and given the state of today's world, having human contact from the outside can be more valuable than we know.
Benefits of Using Cold-Calling Scripts
One benefit is providing a standard procedure protocol that assures each cold call is performed similarly. This continuity translates into a brand identity and quality standards that lead to customer loyalty.
Another benefit of a cold calling script is that it can ease cold calling anxiety. According to Verywell Mind, 40 percent of salespeople experience anxiety when making cold calls at one point or another. Even if your sales team does not experience this type of anxiety, having the script available during their sales call will instill confidence in them. The script serves as a safety net and can make your sales team feel secure.
If you can anticipate some of the objections to your sales pitch, you can write responses to said rejections in your script, making it easier to control and steer the conversation. Having a cold calling script notebook organized well will help you switch scripts effortlessly as needed during the call.
Writing out a cold call script gives you control over what is being said by your sales team and is a step in getting to the question everyone has, “What’s in it for me?” People's time is valuable, and you want to get their attention while keeping to the point.
Cold Calling Scripts Best Practices
Simply using a script may not solve all your cold-calling woes. Keep these best practices in mind for ideal results.
Train and Practice
After adequately training your sales team, let them practice doing mock calls and practicing the scripts. Practicing will give your team confidence, experience, and comfortability. Practicing a sales pitch by doing these mock sales calls is excellent training. Even having "conversations" with teammates allows for valuable feedback to help the sales team adjust and fine-tune their pitch.
If your prospect is another business, look at their website and become familiar with what they sell or do. Do they offer a unique product, service, or way of doing business that you can tap into your sales pitch?
Whether the prospect is a business or an individual, you should also research and find something in common with them like a past employer or a college they attended.
Before your call, make sure you are reaching out to the correct person. Reaching someone who has no control or power to decide about buying for the company won't make for a successful call.
Learn what the best days and best time of day to initiate cold calls are. Certain days are better than others for cold calling and early or late in the day is more likely to get an answer to the phone call.
Brainstorm with your team questions prospects might present to the sales pitch. Knowing ahead of time, what questions are likely, and how to respond to them is essential in displaying knowledge and confidence.
Do not rely on just one script. Have easily accessible back- up scripts. When a client asks one of the tough questions your team has brainstormed and prepared for, have a script on hand to answer it correctly and uniformly. Utilizing technology and creating an accessible database to use while on a sales call would benefit your salespeople and the sales process.
Allow and encourage your sales team to rewrite the sales script in their own words (within your company's parameters) so that their pitch will sound more natural. On this note, having a script that veers from expected sales call patterns is a smart move.
When people receive a sales call, they already have a preconceived notion of how the call will unfold. Break that pattern and say something to grab their attention right from the start. If you can pique their interest, they are more likely to hear you out. Don't do what has become expected, be different.
Making an effort to build a relationship with your prospect is vital for making the sale in the future. When researching your prospect, find out information about their company, recent developments, and any pain points that you could address with them.
You will want to find out more than just the company's name, industry, and what they offer; you will want to check their recent social media updates to get a feel for what is happening for them at present. You can address some of the prospects' pain points by reading reviews about their company and see what they are struggling with in customer satisfaction.
Make it Beneficial
During your initial sales call, be sure to let them know who you, your company, and your product or service is. The first contact shouldn't get too technical as you don't want to confuse a prospect.
Before the end of your sales call, be sure you have let your prospect know what is in it for them. Don't just ask them to join or buy what you are presenting; let them know how it benefits them. Identifying your prospect's pain points and addressing how you can assist them with those customizes your pitch.
It's important to always be honest, to behave naturally, and to place the interests of the prospects first. Remember to mind your manners. Being able to make your prospect laugh a bit is beneficial as it puts your prospect at ease and creates a better rapport.
Cold Calling Scripts: The Basics
The cold call script consists of essential elements. These are:
- Introduction - this is where you tell your prospect your name, your company's name, and what your company does.
- What's in it for me? Let the prospect know that you want to share your expertise with them to help their situation.
- Call to action. By scheduling a teleconference, you are setting yourself up as an expert and leader in your field.
- Leading question - ask open-ended questions. By asking open-ended questions, you will learn the most about your prospect and their needs so that you can focus your pitch on how your company can solve their issue.
- Deliver value. Instead of focusing on the sale, make your phone call with your prospect valuable by creating a conversation with them.
- Propose a time. By asking your prospect to check their calendar, you change the question from a yes or no to when.
- Close - Don't be pushy or even expect to close the sale. This is most likely your first contact with your prospect. Making agreed-upon plans to follow up is a successful first cold call sales contact.
Four Best Cold Calling Scripts to Try
Need some script ideas? Try these cold calling scripts.
Script 1: Basic / Set up an Appointment
Hi (Name), this is (Your Name) from (Your Company). How are you doing today?
Great! I'm calling a few (People, Organizations, Businesses) in the area to find out if they're a good fit for our (Product or Service). What we do is (insert a short sentence that tells the basics of what your company does).
I don't know if you need what we provide, so I want to ask a question or two.
(pause for agreement)
This will only take a few minutes.
How important is it to (insert your questions)?
Oh, OK. I've spoken with other (People, Organizations, Businesses), and have noticed they often say:
(insert pain points)
Do you have these similar issues?
Based on what you've just told me, you may benefit from discussing this in more detail with us.
I know you are busy, and your time is valuable. I'd love to book an appointment with you to have one of our consultants discuss our (produce or service) with you. What day are you available this week?
Script 2: You Did Your Research Script
Before contacting a prospect, do a bit of research and see where they used to work or attend college. This will help you show you are invested in them and show commonality between you.
"Hi (Prospect Name),
"I see that you used to work at (Company); how did you like it there?"
"I noticed that you studied at (University). I also went to school there!"
Check your prospect's websites and see if they offer any unique services and incorporate their niche into your sales pitch.
Script 3: Voicemail Script
When calling a prospect, you will likely reach a few voicemails. Don't freeze and hang up. Make the most of this time to say what you like without interruption. A voicemail script is relevant as many cold calls wind up going to voicemail.
"Hi (Prospect's Name), this is (Name) with (Company).
I called because I wanted to chat with you about the benefit of (Product or Service). If you would like to learn more, please contact me at (Phone Number). I will also send you an informational email.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Be sure to state your name, company clearly, and phone number to make sure your prospect can get the information quickly. Make note that you called and left a voicemail so that you can follow up in a few days if a prospect doesn't reach out to you.
Script 4: Follow-up Script
If your prospect had asked for time to think about or research your product, service, or company, be sure to follow up in a few days to a week.
I hope you are having a wonderful week.
We spoke a few days ago about (Product or Service).
You asked to review our company, and I am following up to see if you have any questions or concerns.
(If a prospect has questions or concerns, address them and have a conversation. Depending on what the prospect decides, you may close the deal or let the client think about the new information given).
Please feel free to contact me anytime if you have follow-up questions about our (Product or Service).
Thanks so much!"
The Future of Cold Calling
Cold calling is said to be dead, but this is not the case. Statistics show that cold calling is still part of a successful, top-rated, and strategic sales plan. RAIN Group's statistics state that 82 percent of buyers had accepted a meeting after several cold calls from a salesperson.
Understanding that cold calling is just one tool of your marketing strategy is key to being successful. Maximizing sales in today's world requires an integration of approaches.
With adequate training and practice, your company can seamlessly incorporate cold sales scripts into your marketing strategy. Doing so will give you another tool in your sales arsenal.
Cold Calling as a Marketing Strategy
If you want to implement a cold call sales script into your marketing strategy, consider training your sales team as the first step. Your company will benefit from creating consistency in training content and the sales script. Allowing your team to make it their own will make the sales call sound more natural and be comfortable for your salesperson, making the prospect feel more at ease.
Cold calling is not necessarily about creating a sale for every call made. Although, if you do get a deal from the first call, excellent. Cold calling is the first step in developing warm and hot prospects. Getting to know your prospects and creating valuable conversations with them help you gain more information to make the sale. Still, it also helps make the prospect develop trust and confidence in you and your company.
Your company's social media presence and email prospecting are great additions to your marketing strategy. Still, these can get lost in the avalanche of posts and emails being put out there in your prospects' accounts each minute. Calling a prospect is much more personal and connective.
Can Cold Calling Scripts Help Your Company Make Sales?
Being able to hear a voice and interact in real-time with each other is something that social media and email can never duplicate. In fact, according to RAIN Group’s research, 51 percent of business owners say they would rather receive sales phone calls rather than email, faxes, in-person visits, or other media.
In summary, creating a cold call sales script involves a bit of planning to ensure that you and your sales team are prepared. Learn about your prospect, learn what days and times are best to call, and, most importantly, learn how to convey that you and your company have what your prospect and their company need.