What is Cold Calling?

Posted by Lesley Roberts on 19 July 2017 | permalink | comment

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What does it actually mean to you? Most people think of cold-calling as a nuisance call from an unwanted and unwarranted source and in a sense that’s exactly what it is…

According to the Oxford Dictionary the phrase:

Cold-Calling is  ‘the practice of telephoning somebody that you do not know, in order to sell them something

And according to Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_calling

Cold calling is defined as the solicitation of business from potential customers who have had no prior contact with the salesperson conducting the call. ... Cold calling is generally referred to as an over-the-phone process, making it a source of telemarketing, but can also be done in-person by door-to-door salespeople.

The idea of selling to cold prospects is certainly not a new one which is obvious when you consider that most people selling stuff are doing so to people they don’t know.

Cold-calling was first documented in 1873 by John Patterson, who was the founder of the NCR Corporation. He described the selling process as

a process of proactively meeting strangers, interesting them in changing part or all of the way they run their business, then convincing them that an acquisition of your product or service will produce valuable benefits for them”.

It is a shame but, cold calling has become a watchword for ‘nuisance call’  and creates a negative reaction that is not necessarily warranted.

All well and good, but in this new age of the internet, the buying process has changed dramatically.

I’ve worked in telemarketing for many years, and have noticed a dramatic shift in attitudes.  In the last ten years or so, the decisions that business people must make have become manic. Imagine how many calls, emails and marketing messages the average business buyer gets bombarded with daily.

Years ago, most business buyers would have worked within a department with secretaries, clerks and assistants. Nowadays, quite often you will discover that the business buyer either works from home or from a hot desk, and has no-one to assist. Their old helpers have been replaced by electronic devices: phone and tablet, possibly a PC or Mac.

Because of this, the average decision-maker/ buyer must consider new products and services on the hoof and in a short space of time.

This has meant that you must find new ways to be effective. Being in the right place at the right time is what you’re aiming for and how on earth can you plan for that?

Many of us have experienced poor quality cold calls, usually from overseas call centres. The usual response is to cut them off or totally ignore them. Not successful calls, whichever way you look at them. 

We like to think we do things somewhat different.

At Talkmarketing we strictly follow legalities: we stick to the guidelines laid down by legislation and best practice. All our calls start off in a conversational manner so we immediately engage the prospective customer rather than annoy them. We find that this approach is much more effective and tends to enhance the relationship with the prospect from the outset.

From a business point of view, the biggest advantage of telemarketing is that it is a practical route to the marketplace. You don’t have to wait for prospects to come to you. Telephone marketing is an effective method for marketing goods and services. You can use this method of marketing to supplement other marketing tools because telephone calling and follow-up is noticeably better than leaving things to chance. Done properly, it can stimulate substantial sales opportunities and enhance brand image.

Talkmarketing focus on helping businesses become more active in their marketing and business growth. We run telemarketing campaigns in the UK. We also provide training to help your staff improve results.  If you’d like to know more, give us a call.

 

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