How to stay positive when cold calling. Telemarketing Tips
I’m responding to a challenge on LinkedIn where I was asked how I manage to remain so damn enthusiastic and positive after all these years of cold calling, so 17 years now. I can’t be the only person who does this role and enjoys it but it’s got me thinking that surely other people want to know how you stay positive when you’ve been cold calling for years. Well for me…this is part of it!
… that helps, having that as my view, if I’m perfectly honest, but in all seriousness as well, the art of keeping motivated when you’re doing telemarketing and cold calling is around three main factors.
The first thing, know what you’re talking about. So, for all the clients we work with we have a really thorough preparation process that is necessary, where we go through and we find out exactly everything we need to know about your campaign, about your company, all the questions we think we’ll be asked, all the objections, who we need to talk to within your organisation, what your sales cycle is, what your pre-sales cycle is, all the information you want us to gather, everything, everything’s covered, so we’re really thorough, and we’re pedantically thorough, but it’s also that we get a good start. So, first off, know what you’re talking about, that helps you stay confident.
The second thing is really, really basic, it’s talk to people like they’re human beings, and it is that simple. It’s remembering every call is different, even though you’ve got a particular thing you want to achieve, have a quick look at somebody’s website or LinkedIn profile before you call, see if you can get a feel for how they are, you know, if they’re using humour, they might be a bit more light-hearted; little things like that make a huge difference or just being able to adapt straightaway to the way that they talk, that kind of keeps it fresh as well, that whole remembering everybody’s a different person and judging each call as you’re making it on your merits. I think when you’ve done this job as long as I have, you get to grips with all this stuff and it comes second nature so it’s just about how to talk to people at the right level.
And, I think perhaps the third thing is don’t take it personally, and that’s actually pretty easy to do when we’re working for other people. When it’s your own business, and you’re doing telemarketing for yourself, it’s disheartening, it’s soul destroying, it’s awful; it’s horrible to do your own cold calling. I don’t actually do my own cold calling; we don’t do cold calling to get business for us which is ironic, given that we’re telemarketers. I have actually been approached by people that I’ve put calls in to, that’s happened on a couple of campaigns where I’ve been calling for clients and the people I’ve phoned have said, “Do you want a job?”
So, yes, that’s been great too, but that’s really all there is to it and as I sit back here and watch the sun set over the mountain, that does help too, I’ve got a good team as well, and the good thing about having the team that I’ve got with the same ethos is we can phone each other up and have a bit of a bitch if it’s not going as great as we would like, but also, more of a constructive sit down, and work out what we can do to change it and helping each other out with the approach.
We also, when we take a campaign on, try to have more than one telemarketer on it so that we’ve got a difference of approach and ideas, and it really helps to just share those. Sometimes, what works for one person, can really help another person out; other times, it’s totally different and I think maybe, in part, it’s pretty remote where I am, so talking to people on the phone is kind of the social interaction that I get in the day apart from the childminder! So, I think that’s just it, if you enjoy talking to people that’s part of it. I don’t see it as a rejection. I think that’s the biggest thing that people expect is there’s this thing of rejection where you feel bad everytime somebody says no, but if you’re having the right conversation with people, then you won’t get affected by them saying no.
Telemarketing is not about bullying your way in and forcing something onto people that they don’t want, it’s about finding out, actually, if they’re ever going to be interested in what you offer. You will find out things like what makes them interested, where the gaps are, and enjoy having a conversation with people about it rather than, “We offer this, you need this,” and trying to force it on them. At Ringhello, we’ve never been great ones for that approach and I speak to lots of sales managers that we work for who say, “If somebody’s really not having any, just move onto the next,” but it hasn’t always been like that. I used to work places where people pushed me to follow a script and whatever you do, you can’t take “no” for an answer. Well, that’s not real, that’s not real life. So, I think actually not putting too much pressure on myself is how I manage to maintain my chipper, cheery nature. So drop the pressure on yourself today and see if your results improve.