August 20, 2017

25 Phone Sales Tips for Successful Cold Calling


Phone Sales Tips for Successful Cold Calling

Making cold calls might not be the most fun part of the sales process. But in many industries and businesses, it is necessary. To perfect the art of cold calling, take a look at some of the tips and tricks in the list below.

25 Phone Sales Tips

Prepare Yourself Mentally

Cold calls can be intimidating, especially if you’re unprepared. So before you get started, you need to get yourself in the right state of mind. This means coming up with a general script or talking points. But it also means coming up with a routine so that you’re comfortable and relaxed on each call.

Have One Goal in Mind

You should also have a specific goal in mind for each call so that you’re more likely to stay on task. Usually, your goal is to make a sale. But in some instances, your goal could be to sell a specific item, to upsell a new version of your product or even to just gather information from new prospects.

Practice Your Tone

In general, you want to sound relaxed but professional on each cold call. But you can’t hope to achieve that blend without some practice. So before and during each call, pay special attention to your tone and make note of any areas you might notice that need improvement.

Record Yourself

In addition, you might consider setting up an audio recorder on calls or practice calls so that you can hear yourself and make notes of areas that need improvement later on.

Build Up Your Confidence

Confidence is an absolutely essential part of creating a relaxed tone for cold calls. So that means you need to work on improving but also think about some of the things you do really well. And simply practicing and making a lot of calls can make you feel more confident over time.

Don’t Dwell on Small Talk

Small talk at the beginning of each call might seem friendly and natural. But too much of it can be distracting and time wasting. So say a quick hello and then try to get to the point of your call quickly.

Anticipate Obstacles

Not every cold call is going to go smoothly. In fact, there are some obstacles that might come up fairly regularly. If you notice some of those common issues, you should be able to anticipate them and come up with good responses to use on your cold calls going forward.

Keep Talking Points Handy

While you don’t necessarily need to stick to an exact script on every cold call, it can be a good idea to have a general outline. If you keep a few talking points nearby, it can help you stay on track in case you get distracted or thrown off.

Be Conversational

However, it’s important to not get too attached to those talking points. If you sound like you’re reading from a script, customers are less likely to buy. Instead, respond to each customer inquiry or response in a natural way that allows you to then lead back to your talking points.



Find a Way to Connect

If possible, it can be beneficial to find some kind of connection with your prospect early on in the call. If you’re from the same city or have a colleague in common, for instance, that can be a good way to build a rapport with them early on.

Create a Comfortable Space

When you’re making cold calls, you need to be both mentally and physically comfortable. So that means you need to set up your workspace in a way that will support you. Get a comfortable chair, put up some family photos and otherwise personalize your space.

Don’t Multitask

If you want to get a lot done, you might think that you should make cold calls while also completing other tasks. But your prospects deserve your full attention. And you don’t want to sound distracted on calls either.

Build Up Your Energy

You also don’t want to sound tired or disinterested on calls. So build up your energy with some healthy snacks or light exercise beforehand.

Put Yourself in the Customer’s Shoes

When talking to potential customers, it’s important to word things in a way that they’re likely to relate to. So think about what types of problems or needs they might have in order to better sell to them.

Keep the Focus on Their Benefit

In addition, it’s important that you always keep the focus on how your product or services can benefit them. So instead of just talking about the features you offer, focus on what your product or service can actually accomplish for your customers. For example, if you’re offering a software program, you can talk about the time saving benefits rather than outlining all the different capabilities it offers.

Highlight Your Track Record

You can also talk a bit about what your company has accomplished in order to offer some proof that it would be beneficial for customers to buy from you. For example, you can call attention to high ratings or reviews, or talk about how many years you’ve been successfully in business.

Ask Questions

You also need to fully understand your customers in order to effectively sell to them. That means that it can be a good idea to ask a fair amount of questions to gain a better understanding and keep the conversation going.

Don’t Be Pushy

However, you don’t want to be too pushy throughout your conversation. Doing so can turn customers off and ruin any future chance you might have of doing business with them.

Keep It Quick

You also don’t want your calls to run too long. If you go on and on forever, your prospects might get bored or disinterested. Or they might just not have the time to sit on the phone with you for that long, even if they are interested in purchasing. So get to your point fairly quickly and if it doesn’t work out, move on.

Make as Many Calls as Possible

Along those same lines, you also need to keep calls quick so that you can make as many of them as possible. You’re likely to get a lot of rejections, so the more calls you make, the bigger your chances are of making some sales.

Try Batch Calling

But don’t make just one or two calls at a time. Once you’re in the groove of making calls, make a lot of them. You’re likely to have all the information fresh in your mind. And you might even get more comfortable making those calls as you go.

Don’t Get Discouraged

It’s also important that you don’t get discouraged by rejection. When you’re calling people out of nowhere, you can’t expect them all to be ready to buy right away. So when you get rejections, just let it go and move onto the next call.

Take Breaks

Once you’ve made a fair amount of calls, you can take breaks to refresh and build your energy and confidence back up, especially if you need a break after some particularly harsh rejections.

Keep Records

As you make calls, you can take notes or keep records of each call in case those notes might help you make that sale or others in the future.

Follow Up If Necessary

And sometimes, making the sale might require that you make more than one call. So after your cold call, make any necessary notes and then follow up with them again later.

Phone Call Photo via Shutterstock

3 Comments ▼
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Annie Pilon - Staff Writer


Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found on her personal blog Wattlebird, and exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

3 Reactions

  1. Aira Bongco

    Cold calling is not really my thing. I am not a fan of it either. Sure, it can close a few sales but it is always a hit ot miss.

  2. There’s an art to placing a successful cold call. While it’s important to have a script, it’s not a good idea to sound as if you’re reading. Practicing beforehand and even recording your voice when you do can help make your phone sales skills even more effective.

  3. Great advice. Asking Questions is a great tip that many people forget about.

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