by Jennilyn Howell
If most of your business comes through referrals, you’re accustomed to having a prepackaged conversation-starter. You know what this specific lead is looking for, so it’s easy to strategize your sales conversation.
Talking to cold prospects, on the other hand, is much more intimidating. Let’s look at four ways you might panic – and how to remain calm.
Would you rather call your oral surgeon, ex-boyfriend or bill collector before your new prospects?
If so, you might have a problem.
Panic 1: Is my prospect ready to buy? No, probably not. Most likely you have touched on one of her pain points in your content messages, and she’s curious to learn more about what you do and whether or not you would be the right fit. At this stage, you’re only beginning the sales process.
Panic 2: Is this really a good lead for me? You may find there are reasons to ignore the prospect when she agrees to talk. Don’t do it! Even if her email seems negative, or you don’t think her business is a fit, take the call. A friendly, meaningful conversation could pave the way for future business if there are obstacles today.
Panic 3: What did that last email say? It doesn’t matter. Really. Spend your energy researching the prospect’s website and any relevant company data you can access. (Spoiler: She doesn’t remember what you sent last week, either.)
Panic 4: What if it’s not a fit? It happens. Be honest with your prospect – if you can’t help her, say so. Consider the potential for future relationships; perhaps you’ll be able to partner in the future or work with another company she refers.
Now that you’re ready to have a cold B2B conversation, what should you do? Listen. Think of this introductory call as a discovery mission: learn about her company, her goals, and her challenges. Then provide some details about your company and how your product or service will be valuable to their firm.
Never fear – we’ll take a closer look at the discovery call tomorrow.