The email I got was compelling: “The 7 rules of cold calling – best and worst practices.”
I try to read everything about what’s working in selling, so I plunged in.
And some of the advice was valuable:
• It’s not a good idea to ask if the person you’re cold calling “has a minute” – better to assume that NO one has ANY time for your interruption.
• And “lead with research” – also compelling. Most people feel we can’t keep up with the information we’re flooded with daily, so someone who’s bringing something useful to our attention is likely to catch our ears.
But then the advice in this unsolicited email went sour. Saying to the person who answers your prospect’s phone, “This is Joe Blow with XYZ Corporation and I’m calling to schedule his 15-minute analyst discussion. I plan to accomplish this no later than Friday of next week…”
Wow. Why should this “gatekeeper” care about your agenda and what you plan to accomplish and when?
Why not, “This is Joe Blow with XYZ Corporation and I’m calling to schedule his 15-minute analyst discussion. Can you get that onto his calendar before Friday of next week, please?” Or, if you have the name of the person who answered the phone, change that second sentence to “Fred, can we get that onto his calendar before Friday of next week, please?”
When you’re selling, what you’re saying shouldn’t be primarily about you or your agenda. It should be about the other person. When people get a call from someone they don’t know, they want to know who you are, what company you represent, and what you want. So get that information out there right away. Just don’t invite trouble by telling them what YOU plan to accomplish!