It may be the most anxiety-triggering phrase in the sales professionals’ vocabulary. No, we’re not talking about monthly quota, performance review, or even Great Recession (although that one is pretty terrifying). We’re referring to that concept that is enough to launch some sales professionals into early retirement, or altogether less stressful careers like air traffic controller or bulletproof vest tester: cold calling.
Indeed, the only people who hate cold calling more than sales professionals who are forced to make them, are the folks on the other end of the phone. For every person who agrees to make a purchase, there are hundreds — or thousands — who slam the phone down within seconds (usually after uttering a few NSFW words), or just as bad, are bored and lonely, and want to engage in a long-winded discussion about everything but the product or service for sale (e.g. the weather, politics, the price of gas, grandchildren, why the city won’t do anything about that darn pothole…you get the idea).
So, if cold calling is the enemy, what can businesses to do give their sales team more than a slim-to-none chance of meeting quotas, earning bonuses, and enjoying the professional satisfaction that comes from achieving excellence? There are three tactics that all businesses, regardless of whether they’re operating out of a garage or one of those glorious Apple-like campuses, should implement ASAP:
According to research by HubSpot, businesses that blog receive 67% more leads than those that don’t. However, for blogging to generate results, businesses have to be committed vs. interested one month or quarter, and disinterested the next. This means regularly pushing out content at least a few times a week (though daily is even better), and ensuing that content is relevant, professionally written, visually appealing, and suitably lengthy (400 words is the minimum, with the maximum running into the thousands). Remember: while blogging can certainly generate short-term results, it is fundamentally a long-term strategy.
Offer Top-of-Funnel Content
The fundamental reason that cold calling doesn’t work, is that there’s no way for sales professionals to know if the people they’re reaching out to care about what they have to say. It’s a shot in the dark, and the strategic equivalent of playing Powerball (hey it can happen, but you wouldn’t want to bet on it). Enter top-of-funnel content to the rescue!
This content — typically ebooks, white papers, reports, and other valuable but free digital assets — can be downloaded by people whenever they want, including the middle of the night. The moment that happens, they’re automatically segmented on a nurture track that uses outreach (typically through email) to cultivate them into qualified prospects, who are ready and willing to have a sales conversation.
Get on the Search Engine Bus
Research shows 75 percent of people won’t scroll past the first page of search results — which means that businesses need to do three things to get and stay on the search engine bus:
- Optimize their website for strategically-chosen keywords (blogging is a very, very good way to do this).
- Use off-page SEO to drive up their search result visibility (e.g. links from social, guest posting on quality websites, etc.)
- Augment their SEO approach with pay-per-click advertising (this is optional, but can be highly effective if designed and managed properly).
When all of the above are part of the mix, businesses can transform their site into a dynamic digital property that works 24/7/365 to pull in quality leads.
The Bottom Line
While cold calling is not (yet) listed as cruel and inhumane treatment by the UN, it might as well be: because bad sales professionals can’t do it, and good sales professionals won’t do it. That means finding better and smarter ways to put quality leads in the pipeline is essential. The three tactics above will take sales professionals a long way towards meeting — or better yet, exceeding — their quotas and targets.
To learn more about generating leads without cold calling, contact the Leap Clixx team today. Your consultation with us is free.
For more information on how to turn your website into a lead generation machine, download our FREE eBook:
Topics: Lead Generation