Is cold calling still the best way to introduce yourself to a potential client? I know a lot of companies and traditional sales people swear by it but surely in todays age with the advances in technology, the internet and social media companies would prefer to carryout business with organisations around them that they have built up relationships with over a period of time, than with a company that before they pick up the phone they would have never heard of.
But at the same time a lot of organisations do still make their largest income through cold calling than any other techniques. So what is the most effective method?
Very interesting thread– I have some opinions..
Personally I HATE cold calling.. I hate doing it and I hate receiving them. Now that is just a personal statement, I know some people have been very successful at making cold calls so let me say right at the beginning this is obviously an issue of “personal preference" (and probably highly relative to the business/product or service that you're selling)–but here's my solution:
Cold calls = NO Warm calls = YES. So how'd you get to make a “warm" call–answer is you get the client to find you in some way or another, Google, Advertisement, response to e-mail, event, networking or whatever .. but then your warm call starts like “Hi, you expressed an interest in our product on/at .. wherever" - it's a completely different conversation and far more likely to result in a successful outcome of one form or another.
The 80/20 rule also applies here–you're immediately working in the 20% of your contacts that will generate 80% of your business - you're not wasting your time trawling through the mass of contacts that will never buy from you!
Am I wrong?–Answers on a postcard–sorry on a forum...
I am giving serious thought to knocking on doors. It's a scary idea, but I have been told by people in similar industries that it is very effective.
I provide a house-cleaning service. Thus far, I've used leaflets and Google Adwords to promote my business, and it does work. However, leafleting is time-consuming. I do it myself whenever I am not doing any actual cleaning, so it's time I would otherwise waste. Delivering my own leaflets has the benefit of ensuring they are actually delivered, to the appropriate sorts of homes, and that they're not just scrunched through the door with a wad of other leaflets. However, I get maybe one call per 500 leaflets, so the return on the time invested is not that great.
I have heard that knocking and introducing oneself and handing the leaflet to the home owner in a non-pushy way has generated a lot of work for several carpet cleaners I know. I am considering doing it, myself. I think I have nothing to lose, although it is a frightening prospect. As it is, I speak to people when I see them in their driveways and gardens and I'm getting bolder about giving my pitch. I don't think it's much more of a step to actually knock on the door.
Oops. Double post. Sorry!
Door knocking can be very effective. I've done it and it works. Although thick skin and courage is needed for the rejection.
For your services it is far more effective than just leafleting.
Give it a go, it isn't much different to what you are currently doing. Make sure you do other forms of marketing too though.
A suggestion is to have a strategy. i.e. choose 5-10 doors either side of you happy existing customer.
Take a leaflet, knock on and say something like "Hiya, I'm Katy I do the cleaning for xxxx at number xxxx. Just thought I'd introduce myself so you know I'm not a burglar...." Can I give you one of my leaflets so you know more about what I do and if you like I could do a one off clean as a trial for you or a family member for only £xxxx"
It's my opinion that people buy people first and your leaflet can't do that. I assume you leaflet has "Call to Action" offers etc.
Hope that helps.
That is an excellent idea. I know about leafleting the 5/5/10 houses around the client with a leaflet that says you're cleaning at numberXX, etc. But this could be a great way to try door knocking.
Let us know how it goes.
When will you start doing this?
I totally agree Andy.. My local accent works a treat!! Rachel
Andy Hall (Moderator) said:
I often “Cold Call” it's a necessary evil. Must admit I don't enjoy it but do have success.
I feel it does work depending on a number of factors;
Local accent. And prove I'm local.
Tell them I'm not selling anything over the phone.
Mentioning other local businesses who use my service.
My attitude before I make the call.
Belief in the product.
Create a “want”
It can be very cost-effective. But needs to be done in the right way by the right people.