Now that Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn have conquered the internet, cold calling can seem a pretty primitive option. When a completely new, exciting way of marketing comes along, the temptation can be to just dismiss everything that came before it as a bit old-hat – a relic of a bygone era, dust on the winds of history.
So is there still a place for cold calling in this brave new social media world? The answer can be found by looking at the differing ways in which the two disciplines work, what their purpose is, and what they actually achieve. Unlike social networking, cold calls don’t build relationships and they don’t establish a community, but despite this cold calling is one of the most efficient ways to generate interest from nothing.
The team here at Gungho are good old-fashioned cold callers, so it’s no surprise that we think cold calling is more effective than social media (we would say that, wouldn’t we!). If you are in a B2B sales environment and your product or service has a high level of complexity with lengthy sales cycles, you just can’t beat the richness of a cold call.
Instantly understand your market, the competitive landscape and perception of your product
With social networking, you might be able to contact several people through your LinkedIn network, the blogosphere, or Twitter, but the time it takes to narrow down qualified targets and message them one by one can take forever. After you send your messages to them, you might wait hours for an answer (if you get any at all). With cold calling, you can reach around 20 people an hour and instantly get yes, no or maybe answers from all of them.
Very lean and accurate results
If a cold-calling prospect says “yes” to an appointment, it means they’re genuinely interested in what you’re selling. The fickle nature of social media means that people who have friended or followed you can feign interest and string you along before you figure out that their lukewarm “yes” was really a “no” in disguise.
You get peoples undivided attention (a rare thing these days)
In the world of Twitter et al, how can you expect your voice to be heard through all the static, even if you do have 10,000 followers? When you get a person on the phone you have their undivided attention. Explaining complex products or services, and making appointment arrangements becomes a lot simpler in this setting, and you can respond to questions and address concerns right there in the moment, rather than trying to do it over a prolonged social media conversation.
So if you find that you are getting a poor response to your tweets or emails, stop obsessing about whether social media is all wrong. Instead, how about just being brave and picking up the phone!Posted on: July 17th, 2013 by Lucy Erskine