Written by Sean McPheat |
Cold calling has always presented a ton of challenges for sales people, and with today’s modern and more enlightened buyer, those challenges have multiplied. Along with those obstacles, the amount of cold calling advice that floods the industry has grown has well.
In the recent post, “The 3 Worst Cold Calling Tips Ever,” I highlighted the three worst cold calling tips out there. Now, let’s take a simple and clear look at three of the best cold calling tips you can get.
Now these tips are not going to cover any tricks or what to say, instead it’s how you say it.
#1: Do Not Smile
I know this sounds simple and you’ve actually been told to smile when calling but you must get rid of the big phoney smile at the beginning of the call. However, it seems easier said than done. Many sales people are so conditioned to the habits of the Smile & Dial era that it is difficult to change.
That big smile projects the image of the stereotypical telemarketer and puts the prospect on the immediate defence. You need to project the image of a seasoned, trustworthy professional who is pleasant and personable, but not overjoyed. Why should you lose the smile? Well, that’s because the other 10 cold callers they had earlier in the day did exactly the same and they all sounded the same and you’ll be all treated in the same way irrespective of whether your offer is good or not.
#2: Tone Down the Enthusiasm
The lack of that big smile will help tone down the enthusiasm, but quench it even more; at least at the very outset of the call. Your enthusiasm is NOT going to force the prospect to get excited about your call; in fact, it does the opposite. Calm down! Allow your calls to take on a more business call atmosphere, rather than the tone of an exciting event. There is a time to pep it up a little but its not at “hello” beacuse you will be stereotyped again. Just sound normal!
#3: Do Not Be Perfect
Ok, you’re a real pro: you know your presentation, and you know exactly what you are going to say. You even know what the prospect will say and how you will respond. You have become flawless…and that is the problem.
Normal, real-life telephone conversations contain many small mistakes, stutters and broken chains of thought. When you are too perfect, the call takes on an unnatural tone, especially in the beginning. You may want to use a small fumble or miscue in the first few seconds of the call, deliberately. A small hesitation or stutter in the very beginning of the call makes you sound normal. It will also help to dispel negative preconceived images in the mind of the prospect.
The key is that you do not want to sound like the sales person who sits there all day and makes 100 outgoing calls from a proverbial “list.” You want to sound like the executive that makes a select, chosen few calls to important people.
Even though you cannot see the prospect and they cannot see you; on the telephone, image is everything!
Originally published: 14 November, 2011
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