Making the first contact with prospects is something a lot of salespeople don’t like to do. They are afraid of rejection. But getting new business is essential for companies. Because existing customers might go bankrupt. Or they might be acquired by other companies with different products and strategies. Or your favourite contact might leave. Or your competitor gets a foot in the door. Or they simply stop buying products like yours.
In all cases, generating new business is essential to top up your revenue, let alone grow your revenue.
What method of outreach gives you the best response results?
If you approach people that you haven’t met before, you can choose to use cold e-mails (or LInkedIn mails) or cold calls and they all can be effective. What are the main differences?
Why cold calling might the preferred way
Cold calls are a synchronised way to communicate, in others words both you and your communication partner communicate at the same time.
A cold call gives you an immediate response and enables you to respond and handle objections immediately. You are able to change your approach during the call, depending on what you hear from your prospect. So it’s a very flexible way of communication, and can be more personal than any other method.
Statistically, phone connect rates rise as the day progresses, and as the week progresses. In other words, a person is more likely to answer their phone later in the workday and workweek.
If you can’t reach them, leave a voicemail. It should be concise. Don’t forget to clearly speak your name and number. Make sure to mention a benefit for the other person that you would like to talk about and don’t give too many details.
Why cold calling might not be the best way
You should know what you are doing and success largely depends on your skills to pitch in a few seconds, structure the conversation, respond properly, handle objections properly, ask the right questions etc. Saying something wrong or responding wrongly might lead to irreparable damage. You only have one chance for the first contact.
Cold calls, by nature, are intrusive. Most probably, you are interrupting something that was going on when you made the call. Both you and your conversation partner need to be able to have conversation at the same time. It’s hard to scale: each call costs time. To prepare, to connect, to have the conversation, to follow-up on it.
Why cold e-mails might be a better choice
You can reach many more people by sending e-mails and therefore, using the same amount of time, this is cheaper and easier to scale. Of course, success largely depends on how personalised your e-mail is.
You can also attach visually attractive information to your e-mail.
E-mails can be automated, tracked and forwarded, making it a more flexible way to communicate. Your e-mails are automatically archived, so you can always look up what you have communicated.
Why cold e-mails are not the best way
People get an enormous amount of e-mails per day. And they don’t read them all. It is easy for a prospect to ignore your e-mail without justification. Or maybe they don’t even see it, because it lands in their spam folder. Or maybe they label it ‘spam’ without even reading it.
You never know when you get a response, if any.
Here also, skills are needed to make it a success. The subject line is very important. Can you think of one that increases open rates? You should be able to write without any grammar errors. Because that gives a very bad first impression.
There are various pros and cons and you should know what you are good at. Monitor what works best for you, and learn from it. Improve yourself every day. If you need some help to improve, contact me.
This tip for sales was inspired by a blog on Hubspot from Jeff Hoffman