Early in my sales career, I thought using a cold calling script would make me sound like an awkward telemarketer from 1989.
However, after hundreds of hang-ups and hearing many “not interested” objections, I was banging my head against the wall in frustration.
What’s the definition of insanity?
They say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
I knew that if I wanted to change the results of my floundering sales, then I must change something that was fundamentally wrong in my sales process.
After much soul-searching, I begrudgingly decided to try working from a cold calling script on my calls.
Afterall, I had nothing to lose…but everything to gain!
How I created this proven cold calling script
I analyzed hundreds of my previous cold calls and looked for what my prospects responded to the best (and worst).
I supplemented this research by reading dozens of articles written by leading sales experts, leaders, and trainers on what exactly makes an effective cold call script.
After some trial and an epic amount of error, I had finally came up with an effective cold calling script that I’ve found to dramatically improve the overall quality of my sales calls.
And now I am proud to share that same cold calling script with you. FOR FREE!
This same cold calling script has ultimately improved my closing rate working in inside sales at Seamless Contacts, an online tool that helps B2B salespeople sell 10X faster by automating the two biggest time-drain’s on a salesperson’s day: prospecting and pre-call research.
Why should you use a cold calling script?
Every TV show and movie has a script.
However, the actors who are saying the lines from the script are so well-rehearsed that they do not actually sound scripted. (Unless, of course, you’re watching some crappy reality TV show.)
There are a number of valid reasons why you ABSOLUTELY must use a script when making cold calls to potential buyers:
Using a cold calling script will help you avoid sounding like a blabbering idiot
If you’re a “Captain Wing-It” when making cold calls without a script, then chances are each of your calls sounds different from the other (and probably getting progressively worse and worse.)
You may also be missing boatloads of opportunities to qualify (I’ll explain what this means later) or even close the sale because your mind is pre-occupied with trying to think of what to say next.
A good cold calling script will help you focus on actually listening to the prospect. And the more you listen to the prospect, the more you will be able to:
- Learn important information about your prospect
- Build rapport
- Establish trust
- Demonstrate exactly how your product will solve your prospect’s business challenges
And these are the exact things that a top 20% salesperson must do on a daily basis!
Also vitally important is the ability to answer any objections that your prospect may bring up during your cold call.
I’ve written previously about how to answer the 5 most common objections. Print out these rebuttals and have them ready when making cold calls in addition to your script.
“Failing to plan is planning to fail.”
Be prepared and expect the unexpected on your cold calls.
The more you are prepared and ready to anticipate, the more likely your cold call will result in something positive for your sales process.
Accomplish the most basic and crucial requirements of a cold call (i.e. gain interest, qualify, set the appointment), then chances are good you’ll advance the process to the most important conversation in sales: the next conversation.
Doing these things will ultimately help you sound more professional at all times.
You will also avoid difficult scenarios where you leave out critical information or fail to qualify the prospect before hanging up.
Remember, the ultimate, long-term goal of cold calling is to build up your pipeline of qualified prospects who can be converted into paying customers.
Without a steady and consistent pipeline of prospects, your chances of becoming a top-performing, quota-exceeding sales professional will be much lower.
Set yourself up for success today and achieve the results you want tomorrow. Use this proven cold calling script to help you set more appointments and ultimately close more deals.
All good cold calling scripts MUST include this…
Another important goal of cold calling is to qualify your prospect.
In other words, you must ensure the prospect you are calling has the:
- Need for your product
- Ability to use your product
- The means to pay for your product
And perhaps most importantly, you must be talking to the actual decision maker: the person with the authority to approve the purchase of your product or service.
Having a good cold calling script will put, front and center, the exact qualifying questions you must ask your prospect to ensure you are talking to the right person.
Putting these qualifying questions into your cold call script will ensure you are not wasting your prospect’s time or yours.
Why qualify prospects on every cold call?
Let’s face it…as a professional salesperson, you are judged solely on your results and how much revenue your bring into the company.
Failing to qualify your prospect may result in lost opportunities to speak with more qualified prospects who had the budget, need, and means to buy exactly what you’re selling.
Trying to sell to unqualified prospects is an exercise in utter futility.
Simply put, you have wasted your time…valuable time you could’ve spent talking to a qualified prospect who could actually buy and use your product!
Remember, the #1 resource every professional salesperson has is time.
Are you wasting this valuable and shrinking resource called “time”?
Or are you among the top 20% of salespeople who are using their time wisely to close more sales and help more people remove the obstacles blocking their path to success?
An effective cold calling script helps you do this
Before I started using a cold calling script, I was missing a lot of what my prospects were saying because I was so intent on coming up with something meaningful to say when it was my turn to talk.
However, a good cold calling script will serve as a logical guideline and blueprint for moving the conversation from one logical step to the next.
And you won’t have to worry trying to think of what to say next since it’s all right there in front of you.
And now…here is a FREE cold calling script template to help you close more sales!
I’m sharing with you a cold calling script template that is based on the actual script I use when speaking with prospects.
You’ll see that I’ve noted some areas where you can customize with specifics for your product or service you’re selling.
IMPORTANT: To get the most out of this cold calling script template, I highly recommend not changing the parts of the cold calling script that I’ve found are proven to work. I’ve noted the areas you can modify to fit your product or service. But if you want to increase the sales you make from your cold calls, then I strongly advise keeping the parts of the cold calling script that I’ve found to be most effective.
In my 2+ years of working in inside sales, I’ve made literally tens of thousands of cold calls.
Admittedly, some were good, some were great, and some were an absolute trainwreck.
Rest assured, what I’m sharing with you below is proven to be the most effective cold call script I’ve used that gets results (e.g. closed deals):
COLD CALL SCRIPT OPENING:
Hi, [PROSPECT’S NAME] this is [YOUR NAME] with [YOUR COMPANY]. How’s your [TODAY’S DAY] going?
(note: I’ve found that ‘How’s your Tuesday (or whatever day it is you’re calling) going?” gets a more positive response from cold calling prospects than the standard ‘How are you?’ I’m not sure why, but it just is.)
Listen, [PROSPECT’S NAME], I know you probably get a ton of calls so I’ll make this quick.
In a nutshell, we help companies to [STATE THE PROBLEM OR HOT BUTTON ISSUE YOU SOLVE e.g. reduce costs, raise revenues, save time, make it easier, etc.]. We do this by [HOW YOU SOLVE THE PROBLEM ], making it [BENEFITS FOR CUSTOMER].
[PROSPECT’S NAME], would you be open to the idea of just seeing how this works?
Great, quick question [PROSPECT’S NAME]: who else is involved in the decision making process for something like this?
And what do they usually do in this kind of situation? Does it make sense to you to have them see this as well?
How will you make a decision if we’re a good fit?
Great, [PROSPECT’S NAME]. It sounds like it could be a good fit. How does your calendar look for [DAY] at [TIME] your time?
By following the proven cold calling script I’ve shared with you above, you will quickly find that your cold calls will improve exponentially.
A good cold calling script should help you in setting more appointments and ultimately closing more sales.
Use a cold calling script and practice it to the point where it sounds completely natural.
Record yourself using this script and play it back to hear what you sound like.
What went well?
More importantly…what can you improve?
When it comes to making cold calls for sales, it’s true: sales really is a numbers game. But it’s also a quality game.
A high quality cold calling script will help you achieve your highest potential, not just in life but in sales as well.
The more dials you make, the more appointments you set for your presentations, which ultimately leads to more closed sales.
By using a winning cold calling script, you’ll quickly find that you be making more cold call dials.
Make more dials, and you will dramatically increase the number of quality conversations with potential buyers.
And this will ultimately lead to more sales. The more sales you close, the more people you will help to achieve success in life.
Isn’t that what life is really about?
Do you use a cold calling script?
How does a cold calling script help you close more sales?
Please leave a comment below and help other sales professional with your cold calling knowledge!
James K. Kim
James "Jim" Kim is a commercial real estate agent with Cushman & Wakefield / Pyramid Brokerage Company in the Capital Region of New York, specializing in retail, office, and industrial tenant and landlord representation.