Old techniques never dies

Cold-calling isn’t dead, but generalized features and benefits are.B2B sellers must give a prospect a reason to have a conversation by sharing some valuable perspectives on issues highly relevant to their needs.

Sellers need to

  1. do their research to become familiar with each individual prospect,
  2. have enough domain expertise to anticipate the prospect’s needs, and
  3. share a valuable insight succinctly with no strings attached.

Marketing can create an opportunity to sell but it has never replaced the selling effort. Pundits who say cold-calling is dead are simply telling frustrated salespeople what they want to hear. Generalized features and benefits are what’s dead. “Give me 15 minutes of your time …” is dead. Evolve or perish.

Before there were social media and email, there was the phone. Once a seller has done the research and developed messages tailored to each prospect, the next step is to pick up the phone. Regardless of which comes first, the purpose of an email message is to reinforce the voice message. A message that conveys value, supported by online marketing, can earn a conversation.

Success in today’s world of the “empowered buyer” requires a balance of activities, the proper volume of activities, and skill in executing them:

Balance: a coordinated program of email, phone, and social media outreach.

Volume: a quantity of each sufficient to generate the desired portfolio of opportunities (possibly more than you’re doing now.)

Skill: voice and email messages crafted to be themselves valuable and worthy of a prospect’s attention.

Don’t ditch outbound calling just because it isn’t yielding the results you want. Take a critical look at how you’re doing it. Prospects’ behaviors have changed. Continuing to use the same tactics and expecting different results is the definition of insanity.