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Getting Past Hello: The Story of a Successful Cold Call

SDRs face a daunting task. Every day they must contact strangers to establish a level of trust that leads to scheduling a meaningful meeting. This means calling busy, skeptical people, who think they don’t need your help. A successful SDR must be

  • Persistent – it takes up to 52 contacts to even reach a person
  • Diplomatic – they must overcome constant objections
  • Empathetic SDRs have to defuse, defuse, defuse
  • Knowledgeable – have deep industry and product info

At every turn, prospects put up barriers and voice objections. What follows are three often overlooked items designed to increase your chances of getting past hello and towards your goal of setting a good meeting.

Know your Target

We call this the Three Minute Research Drill. There are two parts to this process: the market and the individual. Before you begin the call process, spending time to learn about them will inform your dialogue and help establish trust. Consider the following:

  • Know their industry. Are there trigger events or compliance issues your service or product will help manage? This is valuable info you can use to spark interest and engagement.
  • Study their Linkedin profile. This is a vastly underutilized resource. Look for where they went to college. Professional associations or certificates. Consider their career path. What about volunteer work or hobbies. All of this information can be used to build a relationship and establish a positive rapport.

Acing the Intro

Many meetings are lost because you can’t get beyond your opening lines, which is critical! Prepare for this process using the information discovered in your initial research, so you are able to:

  • Immediately engage: If you ask ‘how are you’ you’ve already lost.
  • Demonstrate you understand their pain. Use your industry knowledge to succinctly frame the issue(s) they face and how your company can help. Show them the benefit of talking to you.
  • Tailor the pitch. Use language and issues that relate to their title and role. A CIO has different goals and concerns than a VP Sales, Ops Manager or Technical Champion. Relate to their personal and career goals, and use your Linkedin research!
  • Stress the value. The value of your product and/or service are the problems solved. Don’t confuse WHAT you do with HOW you do it.

Anticipate Objections

Once you have engaged the prospect, they will throw you objections. Anticipate and plan responses to answer these concerns. And, as you conduct your calls, track their answers and note new objections to improve your ability to deal with future calls. Here are a few common objections:

  • “Just send me an email with more info.” Make sure your response defines the advantages of talking more and setting up a meeting. Perhaps you can best customize the information or demo to meet the prospect’s specific needs, which is not possible with a generic white paper. Give them a good reason to talk and to move to the next step.
    Here’s a tip that works: “Our marketing materials aren’t very detailed, and there’s nothing there that we haven’t discussed. I’m not sure if you feel the same, but I’m a very visual learner and like to have things personalized to my situation. We can schedule a call to do a visual walk-through tailored to what’s important to you.”
  • “I’m not interested.” The more you know about the market or industry challenges the better you can counter this statement. Refer to how your solution helps meet those needs with different or supportive methodologies.
    Here’s a tip that works: “I understand and appreciate that you weren’t sitting at your desk waiting for (NAME) from (XYZ Company) to call, and if you were interested, you’d probably be calling me. But, I’m wondering if (problem) resonates, how do you solve it?”

These are just three techniques to use as you begin your cold calls. Getting beyond the opening of the call and closing the meeting time will be dealt with in our next blog, and be the subject of a series of short, informational videos. Watch for updates! And, if you would like to discover how qualifiedMEETINGS can help you solve your top of funnel issues, we’d love to schedule a short meeting. Just give us a call or contact us today.

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