Four Effective Strategies to Increase Your Closing Rates On The Phone
I made 150 cold calls a day for 30 days - here's what I learned
Whenever I'm on the receiving end of a cold call, I like to think that the person calling me is living a Wolf on Wall Street type lifestyle, where everybody cheers and shouts out in joy whenever someone closes a sale. A few bottles of champagne pop and some sexy baristas come out holding wine glasses, shooting confetti into the air.
Likely, you've also been on the receiving end once or twice, and it might've sounded something like this.
"Hi there, ____. This is Jazz and I'm calling from (company). We offer a streamlined automation service for agents in your area. Would you be interested in sitting down for a demo sometime this week or next?"
Regardless of what you might think, cold calling is not dead. In fact, over 80% of buyers generally accept meetings when contacted by a salesman. Of course, not every lead in the book will want to buy, which is why businesses employ people like me.
I make thousands of cold calls in a given month. It varies wildly, but I can expect to set anywhere from 3 to 12 appointments a day, an average closing rate of 3–4%. And I know it doesn't seem like much. Yet, with consistent effort, those 3 to 12 appointments per day easily grow to 100, sometimes even 150 appointments every month!
For the last thirty days, I've committed to making at least 150 cold calls per day. With what I've learned from this experience, I've been able to double my average daily calls, increase my closing ratio by a whole percent, and make some serious money in the process.
Below I've shared four essential lessons that I learned over the course of these 30 days.
1.) You're not the one getting rejected, so act professional
It took me a while to understand that, from a cold-calling perspective, we should never take rejection personally. For the most part, rejection always comes from a business standpoint, especially in B2B sales.
When a client says NO, it's important to understand that they're not rejecting you, but the product or service you're offering, and only because they don't currently see the value in it. That doesn't mean that it's your fault why they say no. It doesn't mean that you're a bad salesman, and it definitely doesn't mean that you should quit your job and work as a barista.
Rejection is common and expected on a day-to-day basis in the cold calling industry. If you take it too personally, you'll risk affecting your overall performance, and nothing is worse than lost momentum.
Also, over time you'll learn that a no is better than a maybe. I like decision-makers, not time wasters. And the only reason somebody truly says no is because they don't see the value in your product or that it will contribute to them in any meaningful way - they don't see it, but that doesn't mean they won't come up again down the road. Shoot them an email every few weeks. Explain why you believe your product would benefit the prospect. Follow up in 3-6 months. Just don't waste your time on the maybe's. For the most part, a no is just as good as a yes.
2.) Results may vary, but your efforts must remain consistent
In an ISA position or any cold-calling-related job, the ONLY factor under your control is the number of times you hit the dial button.
Sometimes I'll make hundreds of calls in a day but finish with little to no results. Days like these can be defeating, especially after clocking in over 8 hours without landing a single appointment. But at the very least, I still showed up, made my calls, and put in the work.
However, the most important thing is that I never let that feeling of defeat carry over to the following morning. Otherwise, it risks impacting my performance, and a few bad days are all it takes to plunge into a downward spiral.
Winners focus on what they can control. Showing up, making the dials, and keeping a positive attitude are three of the most - if not the most - important factors under your control.
3.) Burnout is real, but it's easy to avoid
When you're making over 150 calls every day, it can get tiring. Okay, it can quickly become downright exhausting, which is why nobody likes to do it for long periods of time.
It didn't take me long to realize that I needed a system that would allow me to take temporary, reoccurring breaks while still hitting or exceeding my 150 calls to sustain my current level of performance.
So I hit the dial pad right at 8 am and don't stop till 9:45. Then I'll take a short walk to the patch of grass outside and meditate for ten minutes before tackling the dial pad again from 10–12. I make sure to bring something nourishing, lightweight, and delicious for lunch, which provides me with enough energy to bust out another 50 calls from 1-3. I also take this time to check my email, see if I have any upcoming meetings, and call my wife to check-in.
Finally, I'll head down to the grass patch once more around 3 pm and meditate for ten minutes before finishing up my calls for the day.
It's important to have some system set up, otherwise risking extreme burnout. It might not happen right away, but when it does, it can take days, if not weeks, to recover.
Having a system allows you to take temporary, well-needed breaks, reduce your chance of burnout, and increase your chances of success.
4.) How you feel will determine how you sell.
Things like the way you dress, your body posture, and even facial expressions all hold a dramatic effect on your success rates when cold calling. It's no different than if you were meeting in person. Obviously, they can't actually see you, but they can still feel your energy, and the way you feel about yourself will determine what kind of energy you put out.
Brush your teeth, take a shower, eat a healthy breakfast, dress in one of your favorite outfits, and - most important of all - do something that you like.
What puts you in a good mood? For me, that might mean a brisk, 20-minute workout or a few quality moments spent with my wife and kid, whatever it takes at that moment to elevate my mood.
Sometimes it may feel seemingly impossible to lift yourself out of a bad mood. But no matter what, leave it at the door, and remember that whoever's on the receiving end of your cold call might be in a not-so-great mood as well. Try to transfer some positive energy into your conversation and watch the magic happen.