There is a nasty rumor going around that cold calling is dead. Have you heard that one before? Well, don’t for one second believe it! If you do, your sales career may suffer the same fate.
“The report of my death was an exaggeration.” – Mark Twain, famous American author, 1897
Chances are you’ve heard this famous quote before – or, at least, a more popular (though inaccurate) paraphrasing of it.
Upon hearing rumors that Twain was seriously ill – or even dead – an English correspondent for a New York newspaper contacted Twain for verification. The American scribe replied with a letter that contained his famous quote.
Yes, he was very much alive. Dead men rarely respond, right?
Rumors can be hard to fight, though. Maybe you’ve encountered them firsthand. Once rolling, they build up like dirty tumbleweeds.
A nasty rumor has sprung up in the sales world in recent years. Even worse, it’s parroted by supposed experts who claim to teach salespeople how to be successful.
“Cold calling is dead.”
Heard it? Probably, if you’ve worked in sales for any duration. Whatever you do, you might have been told, DO NOT spend time calling prospects you don’t know, or to whom you lack a warm introduction.
Proponents of this theory spout all sorts of reasons: cold calling is old-school. It has a low success rate. You’ll get burned out by rejection. Easier, more efficient sales methods exist.
Wow. If you’re an ambitious salesperson, just busting butt to make quota, this kind of encouragement could steer you to the nearest cliff!
So, let’s hit the brakes. There are two sides to every story, right? Frankly, the other one is compelling. You might not hear it often, though … and maybe this is holding you back from achieving the sales success for which you’ve been working so hard.
Consider this: If cold calling is rarely successful, it’s because salespeople are doing it all wrong. The reasons for this, too, are many.
They talk too much. They say the wrong things. They go overboard in trying to build rapport. Worst of all, they sound like salespeople.
It’s not their fault. Here’s why: No one has ever taught them how to strategize, and carry out, successful cold calls. If they’ve worked with sales consultants, chances are they’ve been steered away from the practice, for all the reasons previously cited.
It’s too bad, as well. Done correctly, cold calling offers almost unlimited potential. If you’ve always been told cold calling is like throwing darts, think again.
Cold call success doesn’t happen instantaneously. Like most other endeavors, one gets better as they do more. Once learned, though, cold calling can be a valuable tool in the hands (phone?) of a successful salesperson.
We’re just getting started here. The notion of “cold calling is dead” is dead in its own right. We’ll explain more in future posts.
Mark Twain knew a thing or two about exaggeration. Like him, avoiding overblown rumors will help your sales career to not just stay alive … but thrive.