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Pro Cold Caller offering advice. QnA Thread

Discussion in 'Offline Marketing' started by digdugg, Nov 3, 2010.

  1. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    Yes that's right I'm a professional cold-caller/telemarketer that happens to be in the advertising business by day. I'm here to answer any questions about cold-calling/scripts/appointment running etc. Haters are NOT WELCOME and this should be a constructive thread.
     
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  2. principe

    principe Registered Member

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    I guess I can be the first one to ask, what is the best way to speak with the secretary on the phone so you are patched through to the owner.
     
  3. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    I just say "Hi this is __name__ calling may I speak with the owner?" Some people are just going to shoot you down right there. you just have to get over that and onto the next number as someone will find your services valuable. it's purely a numbers game.

    If the owner is out just say "Oh man I'm about to step into a meeting as well and rather than get caught up in the whole phone tag game I can try them later if you expect them in? Yes/No/Whatever Ok who should I ask for?" now when you return the call you can ask for the owner by name and escape trying to get around the secretary.
     
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  4. philionaire

    philionaire Regular Member

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    Just thought id chip in.

    Instead of saying the call is about "advertising" you can say its a "business opportunity" for the business owner.

    The secretary shouldnt turn you down, but they may want to know more. Just say that the information (not advertising opportunity, or sales pitch) is just for the owner.

    Ive done this door to door and it works. Should get you through the gate keeper on the phone as well.
     
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  5. principe

    principe Registered Member

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    thx guys so far I have been contacting the owner of small business directly. So they have been nice enough to answer. But once I get a few clients I can then give more testimonials.
     
  6. corvettespeeder

    corvettespeeder Regular Member

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    What is the best way to find a talented cold caller. I want to hire one, but don't know what to look for in someone that will actually be successful.
     
  7. dontcallmebuzz

    dontcallmebuzz Newbie

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    What is the best way to first cold call I mean is it to sell a service when on your initial call, set an appointment for a presentation, an information finding call or what?
    How do you overcome the voice mail screening- seems like 75% of phone calls to a business person go directly to voice mail and they screen out the unwanted calls
     
  8. AndreasTheMenace

    AndreasTheMenace Newbie

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    If the gatekeeper just rejects you you move to the other client?
    What if you only have 10 customer in your market, and each much can make you earn thousand of dollars? (this has been the case in the past). If you just quit after the first rejection then there should be a big problem here. There should be some other strategy, there are other ways to push the gatekeeper in your favor... and I've seen threads that explain how to in other parts of the forum.

    I found an excellent thread by some guy named Andrew Sauter, he has to be a member of this forum. It says:


    "

    Hey everyone, a lot of good info on building these pages but there hasn't been much on the sales side. I figured I would give you some basics as a starting off point. First of all, sales is an art, it takes confidence, not taking rejection personally and hard work.

    <shameless plug>: I also want to let everyone know I?m willing to work as a commission only sales person for you if you?re uncomfortable with the sales side. Send me a message and we can go over next steps and my background. /shamless plug


    There?s a lot more than I can possible cover in my short posting, so I want to recommend some of my favorite books that will give you definite edge on the competition:

    Beyond Selling Value:
    Getting to VITO (The Very Important Top Officer): 10 Steps to VITO's Office:
    How to Get Your Competition Fired (Without Saying Anything Bad About Them): Using The Wedge to Increase Your Sales


    The first book and second book (Beyond Selling Value and VITO) were major game changers for me as my career as sales person. Before reading those I was a struggling sales person on the verge of being fired, and after reading those and followed the information through I became the top sales person in my company eventually was recruited to be a National Account Executive for a billion dollar company. I highly recommend you at least read Beyond Selling Value, which is kind of the base of what I?m going over.

    #1- Your biggest problem: ?The Gatekeeper?. You?re not the only sales person calling and secretaries are *****s at screening people like you, that want to sell something to their boss, out. They?ll be rude, they may yell at you to never call again, they?ll transfer you to a general mailbox and generally make you feel bad. DON?T LET IT GET TO YOU AND WHATEVER YOU DO, DO NOT GET ANGRY AT THEM. They?re just doing their job, however, the ?gatekeeper? can be a huge asset if played correctly (I?ll get to that in a minute).

    #2- Understand your prospects business and develop a value pitch. Whether you?re selling to dentist or wedding planners make sure you understand the basics of their business and the challenges they face in getting new business in. Every business has a pain, and that pain is effecting their bottom line: more customers = more money. Also understand what the value is of each new customer and build your pitch around that.

    For example, I worked for major job board as a National Account Executive and I sold to huge national recruiting and employment firms nationwide. A recruiting firm if you?re not familiar is a company that gets hired out to fill difficult to fill jobs that a company does not have the internal resources or staff to fill on their own. The company will pay a percentage of the annual salary to the recruiting as finders fee. So if a company needs a VP of Green Energy, the recruiting firm starts a national search to find a candidate. If they hire the candidate from the recruiting firm, and the salary is $100,000 annually, the recruiting firm generally makes 20% of that salary or $20,000 in commission as a finders fee.

    If I were just to call in and talk to their marketing director, they would tell me they wouldn?t have any money in the budget to buy job postings. That their current job board was fine at getting candidates in and they were not in the position to spend more money with a different vendor. So the right way to sell the company is get to the CEO (they guy who makes the budget), but you have to be in the CEO?s mind in order to ever get through the multiple gatekeepers to his office. So you have to start understanding the company?s pain. One technique we did was to call in and asks to talk to the managers of different branches of the company. I would say something along the lines, ?I?m a consultant planning a meeting with Mr. CEOName and I?m just trying to understand the day-to-day operations of each branch. Do you mind if I ask you some questions?? 9 times of 10 if they weren?t busy, they would talk to me. I would launch into a script of short questions that helps me develop my value proposition: How many job orders to they get each month, how many of those they fill, how many of those they fill with their current job-boards, what the average salary is of the people they are placing, etc. From there I could determine how much money they are losing each month by leaving jobs unfilled.

    For example, by talking to a few branches I can figure out that they have roughly 1000 job orders per month, and each job order is on average worth $10,000.00. So if the recruiting firm was filling a 100% of their jobs, they monthly revenue would be $10 million USD. However, they are only able to fill 20% of their jobs because they don?t have a enough qualified candidates applying, so they are losing $8,000,000 a month to the competition (per branch). So if they have 10 branches they are losing out on almost 80 Million dollars a month to the competition. I know my software will boost their fill ratio by 10% if they were to post all their jobs on my site. So taking 8 million by 12 months, I can determine that I?ll effect their bottom line by almost 96 Million dollars, and that, my friends, is not a figure a CEO can ignore.

    If you?re doing dentist you can do the same thing, find out how much each client is worth and how much business you can send them each month (even if it?s only 2 new clients a week) and use that as your basis of your value prop.
    "


    And alot more stuff.... he talks about 7 more steps or so

     
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  9. AndreasTheMenace

    AndreasTheMenace Newbie

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    More about the Gatekeeper(still from the guy that was last mentioned):

    Get the secretaries name and start a relationship. Remember, she hates sales people, she can smell sales people coming from 100 miles away. So you need to NOT act like a sales person, and act like a CEO. Ask for her help, and ask what it will take to get on his calendar for a brief phone call. Tell her that you have a site that could potentially generate $XX,XXXX.00 in annual revenue and that you would just like to give him the "30,000 foot executive over-view". She may try to push you off to someone else (like the marketing director), but stay persistent. Just tell her that something of this nature really requires his attention and that you would be happy to send some info his way. IMPORTANT: Don't get side-tracked by the send info (they may even request it). If you're sending info make sure you have a follow up time you can call her back. Something along the lines of "Here's what I'll do, I have a package that outlines how this all works, I'll go ahead and (mail/email/fax whatever) it over. Is it ok if I follow up with you on Thursday at 10:30 to see if I can get that phone call with him? Make sure you send her a personal thank you card for talking with you when you send the info. Regular old snail mail, that requires a signature is the best (put it in one of those big white envelopes personally addressed to her). Email is ok as a last resort, but it's likely to go ignored. Then follow up with her, thank her for her time, and ask for the meeting.
     
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  10. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    Well if your looking for one to hire then ask if they have been 1099'd (a contract employee if your not in the USA, this means no salary ONLY 100% commission and ZERO benefits) before doing cold-calling/prospecting in your industry. If yes get experience and you can even ask to see a 1099 for proof of employment as well as how much they earned. Some people say they like cold calling but are more than likely feeling you out to see how much salary they can get from you.
     
  11. CyrusVirus

    CyrusVirus BANNED BANNED Premium Member

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    i would love to hire someone like you lol, if you can cold call anyway
     
  12. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    Well the script I use on a day to day basis has a few elements that blends some of the above goals into one. It first asks to speak to the decision maker (owner, office manager, marketing director, admissions director etc). Second it's a quick blurb about what you have to offer and how you came to find them (I use that they were personally recommended but you can say your working with select businesses in the area with an established reputation or something to that effect). It also helps to glaze over how they came recommended and immediately skip to your service such as ranking on the first page of google and you saw they were NOT there. If you pause/hesitate on how you got to their number they will drill you about how you dialed then and it's a mess. DO NOT PAUSE! Once they have a small interest in being on the first page of google you describe your service and set an appointment for a presentation/close/contract signing etc. Be as descriptive on the phone as possible as you want to only run appointments that WILL CLOSE. You want to screen out tire kickers on the phone rather than driving 40 miles each way for them to tell you maybe next week (this response is a NO!).

    If you get the voicemail you should make note of the decision makers name and follow-up with them at a different time and ask for them by name. Gatekeepers will usually mind their damn business if you call up and ask for "Jeff" as it's assumed there is an established relationship or else how would you know their name. The only place this is NOT true is insurance agents/financial services (in the USA) as these gatekeepers are annoying as hell and screen every single call.

    If you must leave a message you can take one of two roads here. One you can leave only your name and contact number. If they are in a sales capacity of any sense they will call you back. The other is to leave a small description of your service and your contact information (maybe get a call back 5-10% of time).
     
  13. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    Some good points are raised here but I apply my trade by a different approach. My display advertising spots are EXCLUSIVE in the area. That means only one dentist is going to take advantage. By the time I get through my phone script/send info on the email I do NOT follow-up as I hammer the shit out of URGENCY (limited number of spaces and it's filling up quickly) and EXCLUSIVITY (we spoke to a few dentists in the area and they are considering it but this program is on a first come first serve basis. so if you'd like to participate get back to me as soon as possible as my contact information is on the info requested so I can reserve you guys a space.) If you nail these two points home the people who call you back will be like yes we want the service (then you just set the appointment for the close).

    I've found that chasing people down to see if they had a chance to look at the information, if they made their decision etc negates the two facts that you are trying to emphasize. Chasing people down for a decision also reeks of desperation. The people who will want your service will see the inherent value of being on the first page of google for their trade. Period. If they don't their competition most certainly will.

    Also please link the original article so people can read it over if they like.
     
  14. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    PM me with a comp plan/details and I may consider it.
     
  15. Paper-Boy

    Paper-Boy Elite Member

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    Whats the average hourly rate for a good cold caller btw?
     
  16. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    No idea. I generate 20-30 calls an hour. My comp is laid out so I get 35% of gross revenue. I can make 30 calls an hour and still get zero appointments but it usually averages out if you make 100 calls a day you can set around 3-4 appointments (you may get call backs the next day or emails back etc.).
     
  17. Paper-Boy

    Paper-Boy Elite Member

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    Sorry, I meant pay rate.
     
  18. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    Well if you pay cold callers an 'hourly wage' you will get subpar performance. The real go-getters want % of the revenue from commission. Salaried employees will ride the pine to do just enough not to get fired. 100% commission guy can not do that as if he don't sale he doesn't eat. It separates the weak from the strong pretty quickly.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
  19. Paper-Boy

    Paper-Boy Elite Member

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    Yeah, I'm going to pay a fixed rate along with a good compensation plan. Any site you recommend for hiring experienced cold callers?
     
  20. digdugg

    digdugg Junior Member

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    No idea.