Few people enjoy cold calling. Fear of rejection prevents many from taking the first step. There are, however, several techniques that can take the chill out of cold calling:
- Ask yourself, "Why should this prospect listen to me"? Your unique selling proposition can be a good start. Be sure, however, to first learn as much as possible about the prospect before making the call.
- Start your conversation by focusing on the prospect's needs and interests first. Don't tout your service too quickly. Potential customers will listen when they realize that you understand what they want and can provide a service of real value.
- Ask permission to tour the prospect's facilities. This serves to demonstrate your interest in the prospect, while also providing you with an opportunity to gather information first-hand.
- Use the mail if calls don't work. If you don't get an appointment immediately, send a note with an interesting article or offer a useful suggestion.
- Don't send a brochure about you, or your firm, without first meeting with the person. If you do, you'll end up giving the prospect an opportunity to make up his or her mind without having met you.
- Stay positive. Try not to take no personally. Keep a log of your rejections and review periodically to eliminate any patterns of failure.