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Q2/2012 Cold Calling Success

A Fluent Moment

Did you know…

Larry Ellison (Oracle) called sales managers late at night and on weekends to talk about stalled deals or lost accounts.

Message from an
AFV Partner

A decade ago, Sales Reps could get away with minimal numbers of cold calls. In the high tech industry the customer practically sought the Reps out, product was easy to push and selling was more about delivering than anything else. Today’s sales landscape presents a very different environment. Sales Reps have to work hard to make their forecasts and customers are no longer banging down their door. What is required from the successful Sales Rep? Cold Calling! A dreaded activity for some, yet, the most successful sales people understand the importance of this initial contact.

Whether cold calling or warm calling, telephone communication skills are critical to beginning the sales cycle. As the world of sales moves from box pusher to solution seller, sales staff must know how to quickly present themselves to each prospect. In the AFV Sales Methodology the cold call is not about selling product, it is about the Sales Rep getting an appointment with the prospect. Our experience has shown us that this is an effective way to increase sales success.

Walter Santiago

Walter Santiago
Managing Partner
A Fluent Vision, L.L.C.

Success With Cold Calling

While cold calling can be uncomfortable for some, following our guidelines combined with practice will help any sales professional increase their bottom line.

Effective use of the phones could well be the single biggest key to successful selling. It is the entryway to the prospect and the source for filling and maintaining a full pipeline. Whether calling a new prospect or working with an existing client, getting an appointment to meet with the prospect is the first minor close on the way to completing a sale. Preparation, knowledge and solid communication skills will help differentiate you from your competitors that seek to capture your prospects/customers time, mindshare and money.

There is one goal of the cold call – to get the appointment. When you keep this focus you increase the odds of getting into and selling a greater percentage of the companies that you call. Preparation is key. Be sure to use lists that ensure you are calling into your intended target market and use a script to ensure that the first 20 seconds of your call is compelling.

A good cold call includes a number of key components:

  • Maintain a relatively quick pace.
  • Briefly tell the prospect who you are.
  • State the most important idea you want to communicate in 20 seconds.
  • Provide two benefit statements and refer to a happy client.
  • Know the features and benefits of your offerings so that you are able to overcome objections when they arise.
  • State what you can do for the prospect, then close for the appointment.
  • Once the prospect agrees to an appointment; be quiet and hang up.

Don’t let fear block your cold calling success

  • Be prepared
  • Know your target market’s profile
  • Know objections to your offering
  • Memorize features & benefits
  • Know the competition

Consultative Corner

Why have a cold calling script?

It sounds corny to say you should have a script when cold calling but there is nothing corny about it. Learning a new skill and changing the way you do things is challenging. A script will help guide you and keep you on track towards the new methods you want to master. Keep in mind that you do not have a long period of time to make your case to the prospect – a script will help you stay focused. With practice, the script may be unnecessary as the new methods and skills will become part of your daily routine.

A good script includes:

  • Brief statement of who you are
  • Two benefit statements
  • Reference to a happy client
  • Closing – handle objections and get the appointment

A Fluent Vision

Whether your sales infrastructure needs to be built from scratch, re-engineered, or simply re-invigorated; AFV is the answer. AFV can help you create A Fluent Vision.

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