B2B Cold Calling

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Has anyone here tried just picking up the phone and calling various businesses?

I'm considering cold calling as a strategy for my business, but I've never done any sales over the phone before.

I'm completely new to this and honestly don't know where to start. Would love to hear from those who have experience in this area.
Any tips or insights on how to get started would be greatly appreciated!
 

Boy

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Once upon a time, I worked in a boiler room.

Short answer: cold calling fucking sucks but is the fastest way to get a client and grow your business.

Long answer: cold calling fucking sucks but is the fastest way to get a client and grow your business because you're going to get immediate feedback on your offer and quickly figure out how and what to say.

You can prep and prep and rewrite a script repeatedly, but until you're in the trenches, you don't know what works. You'll get some questions you never considered and freeze up, and all the rapport you built up is lost. But next time you get that question, you'll crush it with a confident, refined response.

The hardest part when I was doing it was taking things personally. But the thing is, most people don't remember you. Once you get over that, then you can have some fun. Someone's rude? Be ignorantly nice. Or cuss them out; it doesn't matter.

Combine it with a cold email, and you'll be golden. Short and sweet.

Hey X,

I just wanted to throw on your radar [your offer]. If you're interested, [check out the website/I can send more information/I can explain more on a call].

Thanks,
You


Whatever you do, don't ask marketing people for sales advice. Ask salespeople. Marketing people will talk about what they don't like. Salespeople will tell you what works. Go read threads on /r/sales.
 
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This gives you a pretty good feel for the good and bad of it - despite obv being on a sales/hype channel.
Update after two months:

So, I watched that video again. At first, I was pretty pumped. Being new to this, I thought the guy was a pro. But now, after learning more about prospecting and trying it out myself, I see his calls are just bad.

1. He's not straight up about it being a sales call.
He only mentions it's a sales call after asking his first sales-related question. To me, that's like asking for a permission AFTER you've already groped a woman. What's the point? It's too late for that.

2. His first line just confuses people.
People on the call can't tell what he wants. Is he a client, or is he selling something? Most people who pick up the phone have no clue.

3. He's trying to sell to the wrong people.
He keeps pitching to gatekeepers. He should be talking to the directors, not the gatekeepers. Gatekeepers are there to keep him out.

4. He doesn't ask enough questions.
The call's all about him – what he's offering, how great it is. But he never digs into what the person on the other end might need. Like, have they tried something similar? Are they doing it on their own? Any luck with that?

5. He says emails are a waste of time but wants to set up long meetings.
He's against sending emails but is all for setting up 30-minute chats with people who don't seem interested. That doesn't make sense. Don't just set up meetings to have meetings.

6. He gets desperate when someone's about to hang up.
Begging for "just 30 more seconds" when someone's done with the call? Come on. The point is to help the prospects discover that they might need you. You don't ever want to sound like you need them. Don't sound like a desperate salesman.

7. Stop saying you'll work for free.
He's like, "If we don't get you new clients, you don't pay." Why even go there? The person never said money was the issue. We're here to make money, not give away our time for free. Most prospects understand that.
 
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don't ask marketing people for sales advice. Ask salespeople. Marketing people will talk about what they don't like
I've been taking these two-hour walks every day, during which I listen to YouTube. Recently, I've become really interested in videos of people making cold calls for their SMMA businesses.

These SMMA owners I've been listening to sound the same to me:
  • "Please, give me a chance to prove myself."
  • "You don't have to pay me anything."
  • "Can we please have a meeting next week?"
  • "You might learn something from me for free..."
They seem almost obsessed with the idea that their services are free at the beginning. I understand the concept of free trials, like the ones Netflix offers, where the hope is that you'll forget to cancel. But SMMA is a different. You have to spend your time and actually do something.

This has led me to consider that you might be right. Perhaps marketers are not suited for sales. They make it so difficult for themselves to actually get paid. I can't name another profession where people would be so excited to work for free.
 

Steve Brownlie

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This has led me to consider that you might be right. Perhaps marketers are not suited for sales. They make it so difficult for themselves to actually get paid. I can't name another profession where people would be so excited to work for free.
The trick is that it isn't really free - I mean I don't know which ones you specifically listened to - but the old SMMA offer was always you pay $XXXX but if I don't get you ZZ leads by Y date it's free. But you know the conversion rate you get for your target niche per <$XXXX of spend on social + your appointment bookers so you know you won't ever have to refund. The 'free' gimmick is just to get them to talk/take the second full call where you close. That's the way folks I know who've done SMMA do it anyway - and it's what I always assumed these folks do too - but some of them ofc are just doing calls to fake it/show off on YT/don't really make money anymore from SMMA but from selling Go High Level etc and their courses... of course!
 
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Something else to keep in mind is that most of the people publishing content to YouTube want to grow their YouTube audience, and the biggest audience is always the newbie audience. Newbies don't have case studies, confidence, etc. so that's why they'll typically go with the "free trial" offer. So, the content creator has to simulate what they'd suggest a newbie to do in their videos, ie. the "free trial" desperate offer.

What's funny is when you contrast this with people who work with clients who have actually achieved success, you'll notice that they do the complete opposite and are actively looking for reasons to disqualify potential clients so their don't have a headache on their hands if there are red flags present. It's a scarcity vs. abundance and confidence thing at the end of the day.

A lot of the headaches can be solved during the prospecting process, to be honest. The whole model being preached to newbies is to spam out calls and offer free work. The model that should be used is the opposite - be selective and present value.