Is Cold-Calling Dead? Should It Be?

The mere mention of cold calling often strikes fear into the hearts of grown manly men. What was once a staple in traditional B2B sales organizations is starting to go the way of the dodo bird. The question is, should it?

Cold-calling offers several advantages in certain industries. There are still industries that rely on the quick sale. Industries that you work with small business owners and show them a small item, product or service that will help improve that business. These types of sales often are very quick, and generally, are the first step in creating multiple buying opportunities for that product.

These sales often are emotional purchases initially. They are often completed because a “show and tell” or “demo” has been done in such a way that it solves a problem so effectively that the business owner will give it a try. The risk is low because the initial buy-in is low. When coupled with genuine sales skill, these sales can be made and new customers can be achieved.

Cold-calling also is a decent way for new sales people to get used to selling. Notice that I said it’s decent and not necessarily the best. Cold-calling can lead to frustration, high turnover and can teach new people manipulative selling practices in order to hit new account growth targets imposed by an out-of-touch management team. The focus shouldn’t be on cold-calling, so much as, developing talent organically.

Those negatives listed above are just the beginning. Surely you have noticed that everything seems to move faster now than it ever has before. There is so much access to information now, that the mind can hardly comprehend it. Look at your existing customer base, how many have the internet, how many are on social networks, how many have smart phones? They are constantly bombarded with information and now hardly have time to get everything accomplished.

This lack of time doesn’t have to work against you. Why not leverage some of those new tools that are out there. Why not create a video of you doing your “demo”? Why not create social media profiles to reach more people? Why not create QR codes based on your products and include those with invoices or other mailings? Leverage technology and don’t fight it. Your customers will appreciate getting relevant information that can help their business. They will appreciate you not interrupting them while they are trying to be productive. You will be rewarded with more leads, more sales and a fatter wallet.