Home > Cold Calling > Cold calling on the phone or in person?

Cold calling on the phone or in person?

Just wanted to see what everyone thinks. I have had both success with cold calling on the phone for appointments and cold calling in person. The positives for cold calling on the phone is you can pre qualify your prospects with out waisting time driving to their office and you can make probably 5 calls in the amount of time it takes you to drive from point A to point B depending on your territory size. The downside I've seen to that is you can get shut down alot easier with the gate keeper, you don't get to see where they office out of therefor you dont get as good an idea what potential they have, and sometimes if you make a cold call in person, you can get lucky and talk to the decision maker right there face to face. I would be an advocate of making the first call on the telephone but as I said, it seems easy to get shut out by someone on the phone than in person, in person they may at least hear you out, alot of times on the phone they cut you off and say "were not interested, thank you" even if your a legit vendor with a product that pertains to their business, but you may get treated like a door to door salesman selling encyclopedias. (not to offend anyone that does that) - by halidon
Also to add to that, in person you can bring a demo of the product you sell and it can grab some ppl's attention to where they will start asking you about. For myself, I sell power tools for professional contractors, it makes a difference when i walk in their with a big gas powered gun drawing all this attention than when I call on the phone trying to describe it. - by halidon
From a merchant/buyer's point of view, I'd rather see someone in person, with real products or information on their service. The only drawback there is that, if I'm busy, I'll brush you off. But the chance that I'd actually at least listen to you and look at your promo materials is better in person. On the phone, it's all to easy to say "No thanks" and hang up. - by CarrieGee
In terms of reach, "Mail" comes in at number one, followed by "Phone" and then "In Person".

In terms of conversion, "In-Person" comes in at number one, followed by "Phone" and them "Mail". - by SalesGuy
Absolutely mail in terms of "reach" comes in first. It allows me to sit down and look at the materials when I have time to pay attention to it. Someone at the door or on the phone when I'm doing other things won't get the attention I give to the mail when I finally have a moment to sit and relax. This does not include email, I just toss that.

- Des ;sm - by destiny
In terms of reach, "Mail" comes in at number one, followed by "Phone" and then "In Person".

In terms of conversion, "In-Person" comes in at number one, followed by "Phone" and them "Mail".
So ... arguably the best approach is to send out a mailer and then show up in person to make the sale? - by CarrieGee
It's definately better to mail something first, or send out flyers. Just think of annoyed a potential buy can be if he/she received a call at the wrong time. The flyer allows them to view the selection at their convenience. - by crassus
Does mailing flyers really work? Has anyone actually done that and it resulted in sales? - by halidon
So ... arguably the best approach is to send out a mailer and then show up in person to make the sale?
Best approach for who and what? ;wi - by SalesGuy
Best approach for who and what? ;wi
Is that the best approach to making an effective sales call and closing more sales? I had an idea, how about I call on whatever prospects I plan on seeing this week without sending out a mailer first b/c they will not get it by the time I get to their office this week, but for the prospects I plan on cold calling next week, I mail them a letter this week in advance and drop in next week and do that every week for the prospects you plan on visiting the next week? Now the only problem is I dont know who to address these mailers to, any ideas? - by halidon
Is that the best approach to making an effective sales call and closing more sales?
I would go out on a short limb and say there is no one "best approach".

...but for the prospects I plan on cold calling next week, I mail them a letter this week in advance and drop in next week and do that every week for the prospects you plan on visiting the next week? Now the only problem is I dont know who to address these mailers to, any ideas?
What will the purpose of the letter be?

I would address it to the prospect you intend on talking with during your visit. - by SalesGuy
Halidon, what will the content of the "mailer" be? - by AZBroker
Halidon, what will the content of the "mailer" be?
The mailer can be a breif introduction of the company and what we do and how we can possibly benefit their company. It woud also state my interest in setting an appointment with a decision maker. The only complication is, since these are straight up cold calls, I wouldn't know who to address the letters to. But I just figured sending a letter out first would allow the prospect to kind of expect and have an idea of why your calling so they dont brush you off as a telemarketer. - by halidon
My company just gave me a bunch of leads from a database that are about 2 or 3 years old, so alot of the contacts are not accurate. - by halidon
My company just gave me a bunch of leads from a database that are about 2 or 3 years old, so alot of the contacts are not accurate.
You've got to be kidding! Did you say thanks for nothing? ;st - by Agent Smith
You've got to be kidding! Did you say thanks for nothing? ;st
Yeah, I know, but that's my experience with all companies, like only 10% of the leads on a data base are worth anything at all. I'm basically calling on accounts who may have bought a few peices 2 or 3 years ago and never bought again and trying to rebuild or start building a relationship. It's tough to do. - by halidon
Can you build your own lists? - by Liberty
Yeah, I probably could do that but my instructions from my manager was to specifically target these leads, but It may be a good idea to just ask him if I could call on someone outside the lead database. See, what i'm doing right now isn't to earn commission and isn't even my full time job. I'm kind of in a training phase right now before I get my own territory so part of the training is to have me call on (inactive) accounts and get them buying again. - by halidon
Yeah, I probably could do that but my instructions from my manager was to specifically target these leads, but It may be a good idea to just ask him if I could call on someone outside the lead database. See, what i'm doing right now isn't to earn commission and isn't even my full time job. I'm kind of in a training phase right now before I get my own territory so part of the training is to have me call on (inactive) accounts and get them buying again.
In that case I take it back. Calling on inactive accounts for training purposes is a fantastic idea. ;) - by Agent Smith
How many leads are you talking about in this database? - by SpeedRacer
How many leads are you talking about in this database?
There are maybe about 80 leads in the database.

This leads me to another question, when following up to see if you can talk to a decision maker, how many of you all just schedule another time to pop in and how many of you try to call and set an appt? With me, once I make that first pop in visit, I typcially do not pop in again unless I can get an appointment because to me, it is not efficient to keep driving around just to see gatekeepers. The time I spend driving aroudn could be more effective if I spent in an office on the phone trying to set quality appointments. What do you all think of that? I have to have 8 planned calls per day for my managers to review on my calander but I think it's better just to spend a portion of the day in the office making phone calls to set appointments, if I dont already have 8 of them set for that day. Does this make sense to you all? I guess I'm at the point where I am starting to run out of new leads to pop in on and prospect that at this point, driving around is pointless unless I have an appointment to see someone so it would seem my time is better spend just in the office calling the contacts and trying to set appointments. Anyone disagree? - by halidon
Do you only get to work with those 80 leads or can you work your own leads too? - by SpeedRacer
Do you only get to work with those 80 leads or can you work your own leads too?
Well I recently got placed to another territory and in this one I can work any lead as long as it is not a company already with an account. - by halidon
Well I recently got placed to another territory and in this one I can work any lead as long as it is not a company already with an account.
I'd find a way to generate new leads. Those 80 will only yield so much business and eventually attrition will cut into those numbers. - by SpeedRacer
You do have to be very thick skinned to utilise this method of marketing though, don't you?


Has the inception of the direct dialled number blocker affected anyone greatly? - by Dolly
Has the inception of the direct dialled number blocker affected anyone greatly?
This is the first I've heard of it. What is it? - by Jolly Roger
My company just gave me a bunch of leads from a database that are about 2 or 3 years old, so alot of the contacts are not accurate.
Sounds like Glen Garry, Glen Ross. Where's Alec Baldwin when you need him?

Susan - by susana
Sounds like Glen Garry, Glen Ross.
These are the new leads. These are the Glengarry leads. To you, these are gold; you do not get these. Because to give them to you would be throwing them away. ;bg - by AZBroker
"Third prize is you're fired." - I Love it! ;bg
- by SalesGuy
There are a lot of employers that exploit new salespeople.

A salesperson that is as hard working, conscientious and innovative as Halidon appears to be should be in a good sales job with a good company.

In today's business climate, there is a big demand for good salespeople. Even talented beginners can find a decent job. In addition, finding a good sales job is easier than working for a Glengarry type outfit.

If you want an email a copy of my article "Finding the Sales Job You Want," send an email to me with your email address.

Note: We will not retain your contact info or use it for any other purpose. - by JacquesWerth
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