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Cold Call Tips for Warm Response

by Linda Jenkinson |

cold call

You don't have to freeze your toes off in the winter to keep your business running. Warm up to new clients by bringing cold calling into your (and their) comfort zone.

Cold calling can be pleasant and lucrative when you know how to do it the right way.

Before You Call

  1. If you are in the US, before you make a call get a copy of the "do not call list" for your area.
  2. Use the yellow pages of the phone book in your target area to locate and begin researching the businesses you want to contact.
  3. Get as much information about each business as you can. If the business presently has a website take a look. Note the names of key staff members. Write down what you see and what changes you could make that would improve it.
    • Are they missing pages you could add?
    • Do you see content you could consolidate into a single page.
    • Is there content that needs rewriting or editing.
    • Try to find out the name of the person you need to contact.
    • What do you like best about the website or the business?
  4. Be reasonable in your goals for cold calling. Rather than calling until you get an order or an appointment, set a number of businesses to research, calls to make, or designate a time frame, such as one or two hours, for your cold calls. .
  5. Don't go down the phone book. Choose your customers based on your expertise—how you can really help them—and the types of businesses you want to add to your portfolio.

When You Call

  1. Identify yourself using your full name. Speak slowly using short pauses between your first name, last name, and the name of your business.
    "Hello ... my name is (Your Name) from (Your Business Name)."
  2. Ask to speak to the business owner or in case of a larger business, the person in charge of marketing and promotion. Use their name if you know it.
  3. Once you have the right person on the phone, reintroduce yourself and tell them your job. Tell them why you are calling by starting the conversation with a sincere compliment. Frame the compliment around an aspect of the business that you really like. e.g. "I have always admired your store layout and I have some ideas that can make your website as inviting as your store is."
    • A particular product or service
    • Their storefront
    • The store layout
    • Their large assortment of goods
    • A particular page on their website?
  4. Ask for permission to make your pitch. "Do you have a few minutes to talk now or could we set another time?"
  5. If their answer is "No" or "not interested" politely thank them for their time and hang up. If you get this far without a hang-up, tell your prospect your sales message. Make your message an “elevator pitch”. It should be 100 to 150 words long and take about thirty seconds. Then ask for the appointment to meet with him or her.

After You Call

Yes or no, Immediately follow up each phone call with a note thanking them for their time.If they weren't interested, make a short pitch: "I really believe I can help you improve (or establish) your web presence." Include your contact information and invite them to contact you if they should change their mind.

If they were interested, thank them for their interest.If you set an appointment tell them you look forward to meeting with them and send them any information they requested during your conversation.


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