The Cure for the Common Cold Call – Getting Past the Gate Keeper!
Mark Hale ‐ October 7, 2014
Cold calling is one of the tasks that many sales people find the least pleasant. It is difficult to walk in the door of a new business and present yourself; many times the first person you meet is the receptionist aka the gatekeeper. Her mission in life is to block unwanted sales intrusions into the business—mainly you.
Your mission is to get around the gatekeeper to the decision maker, hopefully making the gatekeeper an ally in the process.
There are two things that will help make cold calling easier and more effective for your sales people. What I am about to share with you is something that our sales people have used for several years very effectively.
One of the fastest ways to warm the heart of the snarly-est, fang-toothed gatekeeper is the Cold Call Pack.
What is a Cold Call Pack?
We design, print and shrink wrap 2 custom printed note pads with a pen and your business card. It makes a very nice presentation and more importantly you will find it wins most gatekeepers over and makes a positive impression. You definitely don’t want to walk in the door empty handed.
Now that you have the gatekeeper in a more positive frame-of-mind the second part of the equation is a purpose and plan for your call.
Your purpose may be to simply identify the decision maker get his business card or to get an appointment with them. A common problem that sales people make is to walk in the door and not have a purpose and a plan in mind before they go in. They fail to consider what outcome they want from the call BEFORE they make the call.
Business owners and managers are extremely busy. The fact is, that if your average business executive or business owner spent time with everyone who was trying to sell them something – they would not have time to do their own jobs. People today also have a high resistance to being “sold” anything. You have to make sure that you separate yourself from everyone else by not looking like a waste of time to the gatekeeper. Having a plan and a purpose in mind combined with a cold call pack will help you to do that.
What Do You Do After the Cold Call?
Let me go “old school” for a moment. You have just made a successful cold call, you have warmed the heart of the gatekeeper with the cold call packs, you a least got the name of the decision maker and got a better idea of how you might help this business. What you do next after the cold call will continue to separate you from your competition. What you should do is to send a follow up handwritten note card to the decision maker with your business card.
It may take several calls for you to get a sale or even get an appointment. The type and amount of follow up in many cases determines if you will win the business. Sure you can send a follow up email, but everyone is doing that. Most emails end up in spam filters or being deleted, but a handwritten note card gets through and it gets read and you will be remembered. Why? Because NO ONE SENDS HANDWRITTEN NOTE CARDS OR THANK YOU CARDS ANYMORE.
Sales people have gotten lazy. The younger generation of sales people coming up cut their teeth on the Internet and email. They usually do not think in terms of sending a handwritten personal communication. Well, handwritten communication worked for ol’ granddad and as we get more entangled in the electronic age will work even more into the future. Is it worthwhile? I don’t know. Is it worthwhile to separate your business from your competition?
We have developed cold call kits to help your cold calls more effective. The kit includes, for one low price: note pads shrink wrapped with your business cards, custom note cards for your business and custom thank you notes. If you need to take it to the next level, we can include custom matching presentation pocket folders and sales brochures. Wilson Printing USA has everything you need to stand out from your completion and close more leads.
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