By: Rachel Bednarz
Making cold calls can be a nerve-racking job. There’s always an uncertainty of how the person receiving the call will respond, and you never know if they’ll be interested in what you’re pitching. These five tips can help you sound professional and ease your nerves when making cold calls.
1. Plan ahead
Although you may have an idea of what you’re going to say when someone answers the phone, it’s always a good idea to write it out and have a script to guide you . This script can also come in handy when leaving a voicemail. Make sure you include all the key points you want to cover so you never leave anything out. A good place to start when writing a script would be talking about who you are, what your organization does and their mission.
2. Keep extra information on hand
Once you start talking to someone, it’s likely they will have questions for you. Keep extra information about your organization and your event on hand so they won’t have to wait for the answer. Having this information available will help you appear organized and reliable, so they may be more willing to talk to you again in the future.
3. Don’t make anything up
While having an answer to someone's question right away will help you look professional, we are only human and we can’t plan for every question that will come our way. When someone responds to your pitch with a question that you don’t have an answer to, don’t panic. Let them know that you don’t have that information available, but you will follow up and let them know as soon as possible.
4. Follow up
Make sure to follow up if someone asks you a question that you don’t have the answer to. Providing them with the answer will show you value disseminating accurate information and that you keep your promises. It’s very easy to forget information someone asks for and not follow up with them. This can make you look like you do not value others time.
5. Say “thank you”
Whether the organization you called was interested or not, thank them for their time. Saying “thank you” goes a long way. It shows you value their time and would appreciate talking to them again in the future. Manners are important in displaying professionalism and creating professional relationships.
Cold calls can be intimidating, but with the right preparation and follow through they can be a good way to share your message with other organizations. As long as you plan ahead, stay organized and respect your own reputation as well as others, you can make it through cold calls with ease.