Generating business over the phone can be challenging. Many people lack the confidence or the understanding to do this effectively and negative responses to cold calls and pitches can be difficult to deal with. However, this remains a very effective way to generate positive results and drive a business towards growth, so it’s a skill worth acquiring.
Target your efforts
No matter how good a salesperson you are, or how much of an engaging speaker, you will struggle to connect with those who are clearly not interested – at all – in what you’re offering. So, the first step is always to refine your contact lists to ensure that the people you call are genuine prospects.
Step back from the selling
If you take a hard sell line from the very first conversation you could lose your prospect early on. The first conversation(s) should be less about selling and more about establishing a relationship and opening up the conversation. What do they need to know about what you’re offering and where could you add value to their experience right now? If you try to sell without establishing this essential context first then you will find it difficult to generate enthusiasm.
Your list is key
As well as rooting out those on your list who have zero interest in what you’re offering, it will also be important to refine the list as much as possible so that it is both suitable and high quality in terms of the potential leads it contains. It’s worth noting that the GDPR doesn’t prohibit cold calling but does impact the way that it is done. Essentially, you will need to have permission to call the people on your list now that the GDPR is in play.
You’ll also need to be calling those people about the products and services you originally requested permission to contact them about. The new GDPR rules actually represent an opportunity to refine the list you’re using and ensure that the people you speak with want to speak to you.
Follow up after the call
It’s essential to ensure that you make contact by email after a successful phone call, as this will help to lay the ground for next steps. You may do this using CRM automation or you may be working with a smaller list that you can follow up with manually. If you’ve put in the effort of initial contact don’t waste it by failing to follow up.
Accept the numbers
It may take you 100 calls to reach just 20 people, only a few of whom will be ready to be converted. There is effort involved in generating business by phone – the number of people you need to reach out to will be high. However, more often than not, that effort put into the numbers will pay off in the results.
Our Generating New Business by Telephone course is designed to help build confidence to make calls professionally – and to use them to achieve great results.