How you handle yourself when you are using cold calling techniques is going to either make you or break you. One overwhelming truth that is important to remember is that you never should do any real selling during your cold calls. That is you don't want to do any traditional type of selling such as pushing, telling or even giving the benefits of the products or services that you are offering. The main aim of cold calling is basically to open up a dialogue between you and the prospective client. Below are some key parts of the techniques that have been successful.
Preparation – Effective preparation is key and can be seen in three parts.
1. Know the supplier, the product or service that you are representing. The product and/or service you are providing do not have to be the most expensive or even the highest of quality but they do have to fit the purpose of the market and the application and they need to meet the expectations that you create through your own marketing.
2. How you approach it mentally, the way you see yourself and the activity of cold calling. You need to believe that cold calling is empowering which then empowers you. Just treat cold calling like it's a simple numbers game and nothing more. It is something to make you more powerful and successful.
3. How well you understand what you are offering or the proposition you are offering to your prospective clients and their related situations.
Introduction – You need to make sure that you are extremely clear on who you are and the real reason why you are calling and let it be known that the main reason for the call is to simply request some dialogue either right when you call or schedule for a time that better suits the person you are calling. Never go into great detail about your product or service but give just enough information to peak t heir interest.
Questioning – It is important to make sure that you prepare some good questions that you can ask the person that will help them see the situation they are in more clearly and how your product and service might be of assistance to them. Make sure the questions invite them to stop and think about it and even explain to you about their issues.
Objectivity – You need to always remain neutral and fair with your prospective clients. Be objective is a good sign that you are coming off as an adviser and not some pushy salesperson. It's tricky to do but understand that the more you push a product the more often you will not make the sale. You also should never undermine or criticize the alternatives or the competition when you are using cold calling techniques. Most people don't want to be “sold” on something, they usually are wanting to be helped and guided into making an informed decision. This is where your objectivity must come in.
Listen and Interpret – Consider yourself the expert when it comes to the service or product that you are representing and if you don't come across that way then all of it is a waste of both your time and the other person's time. You need to be able to give them information with useful feedback and you will educate them effectively. Make sure to closely listen to the customers' desire for answers but don't rush in to answer them for them before they even have posed the question themselves. Listen closely to what they are saying and try to take time to interpret what their real needs might be through the words they are saying.
Involve and Coordinate – Make sure that you don't omit the person from the conversation. When employing cold calling techniques it is important that the prospective client is allowed to be part of the discussion and part of the decision making in order for you to be able to move onto the next step. Let yourself be guided by your own skills and protocols as well as by the prospective clients comments. You are the bridge that is going to connect the product or service to the client.
Take Notes and Keep in Touch – The more information you gather the more knowledge that you will have to work with in order to coordinate the next step of your cold calling process. So, take good notes and keep good concise records of your call during all the stages. Stay informed about the client and when the bridge is crossed make sure that you remain responsible and reliable to your new client.