With the advent of new techniques in marketing, you’d think traditional marketing practices like outbound calling wouldn’t be relevant anymore.
But that’s hardly the case.
Outbound calls, especially cold calling, have been and still remain a key component of sales in B2B. In fact, 70% of salespeople still connect with prospects and schedule appointments over the phone.
However, even though outbound calls are still one of the most effective sales tools, it comes with their own set of challenges, such as the countless objections that result in many SDRs developing a fear of cold calling.
This makes outbound calling tougher with each passing day.
But fret not as we share 12 outbound calling tips to help you generate more leads and ace your outbound calling strategy!
Well-rounded research can go a long way. The idea isn’t to see how many calls are made, but how valuable those calls are.
One way to do that is to do thorough research on your prospect and create your ideal buyer persona.
You need to find out the major pain points your prospect’s business must be facing, what solutions they may be looking for, and where you fit in.
Determine the behavioral patterns, location, and other parameters that give you an insight into how your customers think, what they like, etc. This way you won’t just go into the call blindly. You’ll have a better understanding of how to pitch your product and convince your prospects to buy from you (eventually).
We live in a world where spam and fraud calls are a regular occurrence. It’s very difficult for anyone to trust a cold caller, let alone listen to them and consider making a purchase. It is also natural for prospects to feel apprehensive if they see an international number or even a number from a different region.
To instill a sense of trust, you need to show that you are in fact a genuine caller. To do so, use a local phone number when making cold calls. This will likely make your prospects feel more comfortable and ensure credibility on your part.
You can simply avail a local number with the help of a business phone system and increase your response rate.
As cliche as it sounds, timing is everything.
Around 76% of the sales representatives believe that engaging with prospects at the right time can have a lasting impact on the results.
Here are some basic protocols you need to follow to get the best timing for your cold call efforts:
You cannot follow a single philosophy for every caller since every B2B prospect has unique pain points and goals. With each caller, you need to identify which questions to ask and how to draw them towards your solution.
For example, if you’re chat marketing software, you need to define how someone from the healthcare industry would use your product as opposed to someone from the e-commerce industry.
To someone from healthcare, you’ll need to ask them how they manage their patient data, what are the challenges in communicating with patients, and more.
For an e-commerce prospect, you’d need to ask about how they process refunds, recover abandoned carts, manage international courier services, or even engage their customers.
This again goes back to your research. You’ll make an impression on your prospects if they witness your deep understanding of their industry.
While talking and explaining your product is your ultimate goal, make sure to also listen. You don’t want your call to turn into an extensive monologue. Knowing what the prospects want from you can provide you with valuable business insights.
Knowing when to speak also has a lot to do with giving the right amount of pauses, allowing the prospect to absorb the information, and keeping your periods of uninterrupted speech to a minimum.
Research shows that the average talk streak of top sales representatives was only 12 seconds. These reps balanced longer monologues with extended periods of listening.
A B2B sales funnel goes through multiple touchpoints — It isn’t as straightforward as a B2C sale.
Your first call is probably just going to be an introductory one and not the one that will bear results immediately. For most business professionals, their time is everything.
The point is to keep the conversation brief and not bombard the prospect with information. The call can just be a demo or made to schedule another call with the decision-makers.
If you’re giving a demo, keep it under 15 minutes. Research shows that demos under 15 minutes (or 14.3 to be precise) have a higher conversion rate.
If you want to connect with the prospect, you need to share success stories of customers who you’ve already helped. While this isn’t something you’d do over a first call, it is a tactic you can adopt in your second or third call to build credibility around your brand.
Narrate experiences that the prospect will immediately relate to. Make them visualize the journey and also give them the data if required.
You can pick clients from the same industry and pick two or three challenges that you addressed. This will get you one step closer to the prospect and assure them that you’re qualified to help them.
A lot of salespeople leverage cold calling scripts that help them navigate the conversation. But this practice will only work if you know how to use it well — Following it word by word will never work.
As discussed, no two conversations will be the same. You’ll encounter professionals working in different industries with different challenges that your script may never cover.
So it’s perfectly fine to venture away from the script and refer to it again in case the conversation goes off track. The goal of the script is for you to have the major pointers to keep you on track while talking.
A lot of salespeople are demotivated by the fear of rejection but it shouldn’t really impact you on a large scale.
You must be thinking it’s easier said than done.
But understand that in the field of sales, rejection is very common. You’ll probably talk to ten prospects and close one. It doesn’t mean you didn’t work hard enough or there’s something wrong with the product. It just means that the prospect isn’t ready to buy at this point.
The fear of rejection shouldn’t stop you from making the next call or even sounding demotivated. A negative approach won’t help you perform to your best potential.
Just because cold calling is rooted in traditional marketing practices doesn’t mean you can’t integrate tech to make the process smoother.
There are a lot of cloud-based phone software you can use to automate cold call campaigns, route calls to the right sales representatives, and track performances.
Another way you can utilize the ease of technology is with a CRM integration. Making use of CRM software will give you all the lead information under one roof, making it easier to understand the prospect’s background before making a call. It also improves the speed and makes it convenient for sales professionals.
If you leverage technology, you’ll also get access to lots of data. Use this data to see if your cold calling practices are bearing fruits and analyze the areas for improvement.
You’ll identify patterns that’ll help you develop your ideal customer profile by knowing their likes, dislikes, challenges, and solutions.
Furthermore, this data also helps measure the performance of sales professionals. Managers can evaluate the capabilities and strengths of their sales staff and gauge which courses or training can be included in their education.
Every call you make teaches you something — whether it’s a successful call or an unsuccessful one. There’s no doubt that cold calling is tough, so keep polishing your skills to master the art of conversation.
You can conduct mock calls with your team members and make the mock call as difficult as it can get. Understand how everyone responds to challenging situations.
What do they do if the prospect is rude? Or if they hang up? Or if they ask difficult questions? How do they handle it?
Make a list of the issues and listen to how the top performers respond to specific situations.
All in all, outbound calling is an art.
While you should take into account the above-mentioned practices and tips, don’t forget to retain the essence of human conversation and allow it to flow naturally.
To bolster your outbound calling efforts, invest in an autodialer to help you automate the tedious and time-consuming process of dialing numbers. Book a call with us today to find out what Novocall’s autodialer can do for you!
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