Should I make cold calls?

If you’d like to be a top seller, earn huge sales bonuses and never suffer anxiety about an empty sales pipeline again then you only have one choice; pick up that phone and dial! There is no denying that social media and email campaigns have an important role in a twenty first century holistic sales campaign – and they are growing in importance. However, you cannot make as great an impact in a short space of time by tweeting, LinkedIn posts and spray and pray emails as you can by getting your hands dirty at the business end of your phone and dialling numbers.

There are 100s of reasons why sales people all over the world avoid picking up the phone to set appointments to sell and I don’t want to discuss them or indeed try and help overcome them all here. Instead, here’s some brief tips to help open up a great call and avoid being ‘another damn sales call!’

Remember, you are one of a hundred calls received daily. You need to create an impact, sound intriguing and be a worthy distraction from what they are doing at the time you call. Use whatever information you have available, be creative and above all believe that what you have to discuss is ‘very’ important. Your biggest challenge in any cold call is to get the prospects attention away from what they are doing and focused on what you have to say. If you don’t have their ears you definitely won’t get their business.


NAMES – The sweetest word in everyone’s language is their own name. Use a person’s name selectively but often. It creates audio eye contact.


TONE – Be bold, upbeat and concise. People listen to confident people who know what they want. This also gives the connotation about what your business is like to deal with and how effective your products and services are.


KNOWNS – What do you know about them already? “I’m looking at your website right now and see that you offer gym facilities as well as a pool. Tell me…….”


SOCIAL PROOF – We’ve worked with over 300 venues in the Birmingham area in the last twelve months……”


AUTHORITY – I was discussing you with my manager this morning and they were keen for me to speak with you.”



Unlike in direct selling where you ask to discuss ideas, products and ultimately for a buying decision. When trying to set an appointment you tell them that is what the call is for. If you tell them the call is for anything else that is exactly what you will get.

Sales professional – “I’d like to tell you about how we can help with your business”

Prospect  – “OK, how can you help?”

Now you are accidently into a pitch and you give them the option of saying no to your products. Remember, you are on the phone to make an appointment to discuss things further – not to sell. Be very precise about why you are calling as to leave no doubt what the call is about, save time and sound professional.

Sales professional – “I’m calling you specifically to arrange a time to stop by and have a chat about how we could help each other”

However you feel towards making calls and setting appointments a little action will make a very big difference to your results. Think about it – if you make just two calls a day, in a year that is 520 conversations, new connections and businesses hearing about your brand and how you can help. Still think cold calling isn’t going to do anything for your results? Even if you feel you have no confidence to call and no skill, how much improvement would you make to your sales skills after 520 calls? You don’t have to be great to start – but you have to start to be great!