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Sales Tips: Cold Calling in a Digital Age

Cold Calling in a Digital Age

Cold Calling in a Digital Age

As part of Solutions Review’s Contributed Content Seriesa collection of contributed articles written by our enterprise tech thought leader communitySean Evers, the VP of Sales & Partner at Pipedrive, shares some sales tips to help reps improve their cold calling efforts in today’s digital world.

The acceleration of a digital and technological takeover is top of mind for many in today’s workforce. The sales profession is no exception. AI chatbots and AI technology increasingly demonstrate their undeniable value across several business fronts. However, the jury is still out on whether a digital revolution could eclipse the genuine human connection and personalized approach inherent in a strong sales strategy.

The Significance of Human Engagement

Companies are well advised to embrace and integrate technology into their sales strategies, but they must maintain the enduring value of human interaction. While modern consumers appreciate the efficiency of streamlined online transactions and chatbot convenience, the personal touch of a customized text message or a brief phone call can boost trust and propel a sale forward.

Notwithstanding, relying solely on cold calls to initiate a rapport with a prospect may be met with a frosty reception. Try mixing this approach with sending a brief text or email beforehand. This demonstrates respect for a person’s time and boundaries and can do wonders to initiate a more personal connection. It also lets the salesperson gain insight into the prospect’s preferences and needs. Engaging with a live sales representative instills a sense of worth, credibility, and confidence, surpassing interactions limited to digital platforms alone.

Why Rejection Isn’t the “End-All Be-All”

A salesperson is used to rejection, and most are not deterred. We learn to roll with the punches, dust ourselves off, and try again. Staying committed to the sales game will reap dividends. According to Pipedrive’s annual State of Sales and Marketing: The Economy Review 2022/23, the vast majority of survey respondents (86 percent) reached their regular sales quota regularly, usually or always, while 60 percent earned their personal annual sales target last year. It can be intimidating to focus on cold calling, but it is generally an inevitable part of achieving high-yield sales, and many people can come to enjoy it. Preparing in advance is an excellent way to warm up to a period of making sales calls. This includes compiling a list of prompts, follow-up questions, solutions, and additional information to help facilitate a flow of conversation and seed future leads.

Bringing out all sales tactics, including some cold calling, demonstrates a commitment to fostering engagement and seeking common ground, whether it relates to the current sale or future opportunities.

Embracing Integrated Sales Strategies

While certain people may lean towards a digital-first sales model, many still yearn for the interpersonal connection facilitated by phone calls. McKinsey & Company’s Next in Personalization 2021 Report found that 71 percent of consumers expect companies to deliver personalized interactions. And 76 percent get frustrated when this doesn’t happen. Embracing a hybrid sales strategy allows B2B organizations to capture all moving preferences.

Irrespective of the communication medium employed to initiate relationships, adherence to time-tested sales techniques and best practices remains vital:

  • Craft concise, personalized messages (via text, email, or voicemail) to distinguish yourself from competitors and the inundation of automated communications flooding inboxes.
  • Delivering value and relevance from the outset is crucial to avoid contributing to the constant noise that prospects face daily.
  • Addressing concerns promptly, whether over the phone or through messaging, fosters trust and instills a sense of comfort. Tailored explanations can provide the extra impetus needed to advance a sale.
  • Regular check-ins and messaging to ensure things are going smoothly help strengthen relationships.

Why You Should Future Proof Your Sales Tactics

Sales managers and team leaders recognize the ever-evolving nature of closing a sale, and while we’ve talked about maintaining a human touch, disregarding the new digital tactics may also result in a stunted sales pipeline. As highlighted in the above State of Sales and Marketing Report 2022/23, while most companies experienced growth, the growth rate was not as robust as in previous years.

Despite 63 percent of respondents indicating growth within their companies, the year-on-year growth percentage decreased from 71 percent compared to the previous year. Smaller companies bore the brunt of this trend, revealing a distinct correlation between company size and employee success. Among the survey findings, the data points to critical areas small businesses can invest in when there are signs of economic volatility.

For example, the study found that companies prioritizing technology investments saw an 18 percent increase in business expectations for business growth that same year. Businesses that neglected technology were twice as likely to worry about individual workloads, at over 40 percent. Staying versatile and continuously integrating hybrid sales tactics work to not only give prospects a better experience but also give the salesperson a much better understanding of needs and wants to help close the sale.

An integrated approach that combines digital efficiency with personalized outreach equips B2B organizations with the essential resources to drive revenue expansion and secure more deals. By leveraging a combination of cold calling, customized communication, and digital marketing channels such as email and social media, along with a comprehensive CRM platform, sales teams possess all the necessary tools to sustain revenue growth and offer a sales model that benefits all prospects, ultimately leading to more sales.

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