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Monday, December 19, 2011

Cold Calling is Alive and Kicking

This is one of a series of articles by Mónica Arias of Excellence Consulting, a luxury sales and marketing consulting firm based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. These articles will focus on ways that sales and marketing professional in the jewelry and luxury industries can improve their techniques.

Let´s assume it: cold calling is alive and kicking! You may argue it is really difficult for luxury companies to get new clients through cold calling. Reality, however, proves quite the contrary.

So, what are the main reasons why this strategy is still used and will continue to be used for doing business in the future?

Cold calling is: 
* A fantastic tool once you realize that more often than not clients love to be called and offered solutions and / or products on the phone, your possibilities to get new clients will go up very quickly.

* A “voice-bridge” between your product and service and your client and prospect. When you make cold calls, you can easily interact showing the right “voice-attitude,” so the person who is listening on the other end will feel your pleasant words as you speak. This will automatically generate a bridge between you and the prospect, allowing for your speech continuity.

* A fun resource for your client. You may respect your client/prospect when on the line but at the same time offer a “tone of your own grace” by saying something casual, or talking about a news event about the market, or whatever the phrase of your choice to lighten them up a bit.

From a professional point of view, cold calling is not only necessary but obligatory. This means you should at least have a couple of strategies on paper to start working with every week, as well as an action plan to follow up on those calls that need to be made again.

Make your own movie
Strategies for cold calling come in different versions but one I really love and recommend using is crafting your own scripts. I know there are many sales professionals that will hate me for saying this. However, I know scripts work so well. I used to think exactly like the haters but then I learned to forced myself to go “the extra mile” and prepare my own scripts with phrases and assorted words that helped me enormously in my everyday work of enhancing my portfolio.

You can even record your voice once you have prepared your scripts and listen to yourself over and over, until getting it right, such as choosing to change certain words for others much more suitable.

In order to be ready, you can always rely on your list of words and phrases I recommended you to craft in previous articles.

Their help is immense and so will be the feedback from your customers.
Once you start using cold calling, do not underestimate the power of voice mails. I know, I know…it is so stupid to talk to a machine! But, again, studies have shown that 60 % of the messages you leave on answering machines offering your customers / prospects to call you back because you have something really juicy to talk about is answered.  Now this simply means that voice mails work, and that 6 out of 10 messages you leave will be answered. Do you know of an easiest tool to make new customers or make your existing clients part of a loyal portfolio?

As Wendy Weiss, the self-claimed “Queen of Cold Calling” puts it: “All sales professionals use scripts, not all sales professionals use good scripts” I would add: “not all sales professionals use excellent scripts for cold calling.”

Take action
Craft your script, make a list of possible questions you would like to ask, write on another column a list of possible objections you might find, and finally what kind of responses you would like to say to overcome them with grace and courtesy.

Pick up the phone….differentiate from the rest, make that call, talk to your prospect using enchanting words and phrases, leave a message, send them a picture of the last exciting colorful collection piece and enjoy your brightness closing more sales every month while making your customers truly happy purchasing from You.

Mónica M. Arias
Excellence Consultant: Helping you discover how to reach your next level through excellence.
contacto@monicaarias.com.ar

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