Due to COVID-19, B2B sales reps and leaders have been reinventing their brands to align with current customer patterns. Digital marketing, virtual connections, outbound calls, and solution selling are becoming more popular. Cold calling is a B2B outbound sales strategy where sales representatives approach and acquaint potential clients with the products and services they offer.
‘With skeptics dismissing the model as an outdated sales strategy, how can B2B companies excel in cold calling?’
When done correctly, it is the most efficient way of getting high-potential sales and a direct source for understanding the needs and challenges of prospects.
Therefore, let’s highlight some of the best B2B cold calling tips.
Know your prospects well
As a calling agent, you should create an ideal buyer persona. This is a set of criteria that will help you identify clients who fit your company’s profile.
Get information about them from their websites, simple survey questions, or social media pages (LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter).
Research for relevant information such as location, annual reports, press releases, business practices, goals, and company associations.
‘Why should you do that?’
The data will help you understand their problems better, be prepared for their questions, and provide solutions that align with their company policy.
Start your pitch right
As a B2B sales rep, you have only one chance to approach your client. If you irritate them on the first call, you might lose them altogether.
Organize your thoughts and come up with an opening statement that piques their interest.
Do not start by asking them if they have a minute to talk.
They probably don’t.
You are taking up time from their busy schedule, so be direct, polite, professional, and informative.
‘Hi, my name is Kate Kim. I am calling from Westlyfrm company. We are apprised of how COVID-19 has affected your business operations. We want to ease your burden by providing services that will maximize your productivity and minimize your expenses…’
Now you have their attention!
Call your prospects at the right time
Your prospect is a B2B management personnel busy with countless priorities; therefore, you must make the call at the right time.
Study shows that the best days to make sales are Wednesday and Thursday. The two days are suitable because they are in the middle of the week.
The best time is between 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. or 2 p.m to 4 p.m. This is because most prospects are in the office. Any other time is inappropriate since everyone is either settling in for work or is done with work.
The intention is to find days and times that you will get the conversation flowing.
Build rapport by giving examples of customer success stories
Share the experiences of other clients. Pick at least two B2B business problems your organization has solved for enterprises that are similar or meaningful to your client.
If you are in the food industry, mention well-known restaurants that have benefited from utilizing your products and service.
This will affirm the prospect that you know the industry well and are adequately equipped to solve their problems.
Be explicit so that your prospect can relate to the story.
Leverage technology and predictive tools
Technology plays a vital role in boosting sales. There are many sales tools and mobile apps that will ease the cold calling experience such as:
- CRM – An inbuilt calling feature that automatically makes calls, takes notes, records calls, and logs all inbound and outbound calls.
- ConnectAndSell – This service can help avoid irritating cold calling practices such as manual dialing, waiting on hold, and scheduling follow-ups.
- DiscoverOrg – The sales tool minimizes time spent researching clients by providing company data and highlighting vital buying triggers.
- Nextiva – This is a reliable VoIP phone system. It ensures your telephone connection is audible and clear. If your phone keeps dropping, you will sound unprofessional, which may cost you the client.
Learn how to handle cold calling scripts
A B2B cold calling script is meant for practice. You can use it to perfect your introduction and to answer technical questions.
However, DO NOT follow it blindly and risk sounding like an automated machine. Add personality and let the conversation flow.
Have open-ended questions that will unlock the information you want. Listen attentively to the client and wait for your turn to speak.
The success of a B2B cold calling campaign does not depend on how good the script is; but how good the calling agent is.
When faced with complaints or questions you were unprepared for, do not stutter, remain confident, and discreetly ask for assistance.
Lastly, do not push the client to buy your product on the first call. If you are rejected, respectfully conclude the conversation.
Use numbers that your prospects will trust
If your business is situated in a different country than your prospect, it is advisable to call clients with a local number.
‘What role does this play in B2B cold calling?’
There might be apprehension if you call prospects with international numbers. They are likely to dismiss the call.
Using a local number will enforce trust and make them feel more comfortable.
You can get a local number with the help of virtual phone systems such as telephony software, Google Voice, or VoIP provider.
Avoid distractions while making cold calls
B2B cold calling sales strategy requires your full attention as a sales agent.
Distractions might trap you to say something wrong or not listen to customers.
“Starve your distraction and feed your focus” – Anonymous.
How to mute distractions while cold calling:
- Turn off unrelated screens.
- Keep your phone on silent.
- Set aside time for making cold calls only.
- Clear your mind from unwanted thoughts.
- Put on wireless headphones while working in the office to avoid noise.
- Stay away from irrelevant discussions with colleagues until your cold calls are complete.
When you take breaks in between calls, do not go for too long so that you don’t miss calls from prospects.