Devon McDonald is a Partner at OpenView, where she sits on the firm’s investment committee and oversees OpenView’s Growth team, a group of Research, Sales and Marketing Strategists responsible for helping its portfolio companies acquire more customers and scale at...
Your First Call
Your First Call
This is a part of a series that was created to help you get the practice of outbound prospecting built into your company. This series will walk through the process, necessary roles, in addition to guides for each role to help your company get started quickly. In the next few posts, I’ll be releasing the contents of a quick start guide for Business Development Representatives to use to attain success during this process.
One thing that beginners tend to think is that cold calling is about making the sale. It’s not. It’s about getting the chance to make the sale. Specifically, the purpose of a cold call is to set an appointment to make the pitch to show the solution and generate interest — to make the client think.
When you are making your first call, remember:
- You will fail
- You will have bad calls
- People will hang up on you
- People will scream at you “STOP CALLING ME”
- People will ask you to take them off your call list
- People will ask, “Is this a cold call,” and once you reply, you will hear the clicking sound of their phone hanging up
HOWEVER — with every failure, there is success!
So what can you do?
- Call more
- Don’t let clients discourage you
- Be creative
- If someone from Bank of America hangs up on you, cold call someone else at Bank of America; if they hang up, keep calling until someone takes the time to listen to you
- Stay motivated, it’s not the end of the world — there are worse things in life. Pick up your pack and keep going.
Less experienced salespeople tend to sell too much. They talk. And talk. And talk. Why? Silence is scary. Remember — always ask the open-ended questions, and keep in mind that to be truly effective on a sales call, a sales person needs to speak only 20 to 30% of the time.
Selling on the Phone, Resources for Entrepreneurs
Next week, I’ll be providing some tips to create a model day for success.