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7 Cold Calling Secrets Even The Sales Gurus Don't Know

Why am I posting this?

I am in the middle of designing sales pitch for our yet to be launched service. Open Outbound Training Programs for Corporate that would address the "T-E-A-M Building" Skills.

www.teamact.org | www.ziceholidays.com

More and more e-mails are arriving in my in-box from people who hate cold calling. Here's what they're saying:

• “Cold calling terrifies me.”

• “The phone feels like a 10,000-pound weight.”

• “Every time I have to make a cold call, I freeze up.”

• “I feel like a fraud when I’m cold calling.”

• “I can’t take the rejection when I do cold calling. It just kills me.”

• “I’ve gone from top producer to ‘hermit’ because of my mental brick wall when it comes to cold calling.”

Cold calling the old way is a painful struggle.

But you can make it a productive and positive experience by changing your mindset and cold calling the new way.

To show you what I mean, here are 7 tested cold calling ideas that even the sales gurus don’t know.

1. Change Your Mental Objective Before You Make the Call

If you’re like most people who make cold calls, you’re hoping to make a sale -- or at least an appointment -- before you even pick up the phone.

The problem is, the people you call somehow always pick up on your mindset immediately.

They sense that you’re focused on your goals and interests, rather than on finding out what they might need or want.

This short-circuits the whole process of communication and trust-building.

Here’s the benefit of changing your mental objective before you make the call: it takes away the frenzy of working yourself up mentally to pick up the phone.

All the feelings of rejection and fear come from us getting wrapped up in our expectations and hoping for an outcome when it’s premature to even be thinking about an outcome.

So try this. Practice shifting your mental focus to thinking, “When I make this call, I’m going to build a conversation so that a level of trust can emerge allowing us to exchange information back and forth so we can both determine if there’s a fit or not.”

2. Understand the Mindset of the Person You’re Calling

Let’s say you’re at your office and you’re working away.

Your phone rings and someone says, “Hello, my name’s Mark. I’m with Financial Solutions International. We offer a broad array of financial solutions. Do you have a few minutes?”

What would go through your mind?

Probably something like this: “Uh-oh, another salesperson. I’m about to be sold something. How fast can I get this person off the phone?”

In other words, it’s basically over at “Hello,” and you end up rejected.

The moment you use the old cold calling approach -- the traditional pitch about who you are and what you have to offer, which all the sales gurus have been teaching for years -- you trigger the negative “salesperson” stereotype in the mind of the person you’ve called, and that means immediate rejection.

I call it “The Wall.”

The problem is with how you’re selling, not what you’re selling.

This is an area that’s been ignored in the world of selling.

We’ve all been trained to try to push prospects into a "yes" response on the first call. But that creates sales pressure.

But, if you learn to really understand and put yourself in the mindset of the person you call, you’ll find it easier to avoid triggering The Wall.

It’s that fear of rejection that makes cold calling so frightening.

Instead, start thinking about language that will engage people and not language that will trigger rejection.

3. Identify a Core Problem That You Can Solve

We’ve all learned that when we begin a conversation with a prospect, we should talk about ourselves, our product, and our solution. Then we sort of hope that the person connects with what we’ve just told them. Right?

But when you offer your pitch or your solution without first involving your prospect by talking about a core problem that they might be having, you’re talking about yourself, not them.

And that’s a problem.

Prospects connect when they feel that you understand their issues before you start to talk about your solutions.

When people feel understood, they don’t put up The Wall. They remain open to talking with you.

Here’s an example based on my own experience. I offer Unlock The Game™ as a new approach in selling. When I call a vice president of sales, I would never start out with, “Hi, my name is Ari, I'm with Unlock The Game, and I offer the newest technique in selling, and I wonder if you have a few minutes to talk now.”

Instead, I wouldn’t even pick up the phone without first identifying one or more problems that I know VPs often have with their sales teams. Problems that Unlock The Game™ can solve.

For example, one common problem is when sales teams and salespeople spend time chasing prospects who have no intention of buying.

So I would start by asking, “Are you grappling with issues around your sales team chasing prospects who lead them on without any intention of buying?”

So, come up with two or three specific core problems that your product or service solves. (Avoid generic problem phrases like “cut costs” or “increase revenue.” They’re too vague.)

4. Start With a Dialogue, Not a Presentation

Let’s return to the goal of a cold call, which is to create a two-way dialogue engaging prospects in a conversation.

We’re not trying to set the person up for a yes or no. That’s the old way of cold calling.

This new cold calling approach is designed to engage people in a natural conversation. The kind you might have with a friend. This lets you both of you decide whether it’s worth your time to pursue the conversation further.

The key here is never to assume beforehand that your prospect should buy what you have to offer, even if they’re a 100 percent fit with the profile of the “perfect customer.”

If you go into the call with that assumption, prospects will pick up on it and The Wall will go up, no matter how sincere you are.

Avoid assuming anything about making a sale before you make a call.

For one thing, you have no idea whether prospects can buy what you have because you know nothing about their priorities, their decisionmaking process, their budget, etc.

If you assume that you’re going to sell them something on that first call, you’re setting yourself up for failure. That’s the core problem with traditional old-style cold calling.

Stay focused on opening a dialogue and determining if it makes sense to continue the conversation.

5. Start With Your Core Problem Question

Once you know what problems you solve, you also know exactly what to say when you make a call. It’s simple. You begin with, “Hi, my name is Ari. Maybe you can help me out for a moment.”

How would you respond if someone said that to you?

Probably, “Sure, how can I help you?” or “Sure, what do you need?” That’s how most people would respond to a relaxed opening phrase like that. It’s a natural reaction.

The thing is, when you ask for help, you’re also telling the truth because you don’t have any idea whether you can help them or not.

That’s why this new approach is based on honesty and truthfulness. That’s why you’re in a very good place to begin with.

When they reply, “Sure, how can I help you?,” you don’t respond by launching into a pitch about what you have to offer. Instead, you go right into talking about the core problem to find out whether it’s a problem for the prospect.

So you say, “I’m just giving you a call to see if you folks are grappling (and the key word here is ‘grappling’) with any issues around your sales team chasing prospects who turn out to never have any intention of buying?”

No pitch, no introduction, nothing about me. I just step directly into their world.

The purpose of my question is to open the conversation and develop enough trust so they’ll feel comfortable having a conversation.

The old way of cold calling advises asking lots of questions to learn about the prospect’s business and to “connect.” The problem is that people see right through that. They know that you have an ulterior motive, and then you’re right back up against The Wall.

These ideas may be hard for you to apply to your own situation at first because trying to leverage calls based on what we know about our solution is so engrained in our thinking.

If you stay with it, though, you can learn to step out of your own solution and convert it into a problem that you can articulate using your prospects’ language.

And that’s the secret of building trust on calls. It’s the missing link in the whole process of cold calling.

6. Recognize and Diffuse Hidden Pressures

Hidden sales pressures that makes The Wall go up can take a lot of forms.

For example, “enthusiasm ” can send the message that you’re assuming that what you have is the right fit for the prospect. That can send pressure over the phone to your prospect.

You must be able to engage people in a natural conversation. Think of it as calling a friend. Let your voice be natural, calm, relaxed…easy-going. If you show enthusiasm on your initial call, you’ll probably trigger the hidden sales pressure that triggers your prospect to reject you.

Another element of hidden pressure is trying to control the call and move it to a "next step".

The moment you begin trying to direct your prospect into your "sales process ", there is a very high likelihood that you can "turn off" your prospect's willingness to share with you the details of their situation.

It's important to allow the conversation to evolve naturally and to have milestones or checkpoints throughout your call so you can assess if there is a fit between you and the person you are speaking with.

7. Determine a Fit

Now, suppose that you’re on a call and it’s going well, with good dialogue going back and forth. You’re reaching a natural conclusion…and what happens?

In the old way of cold calling, we panic. We feel we’re going to lose the opportunity, so we try to close the sale or at least to book an appointment. But this puts pressure on the prospect, and you run the risk of The Wall going up again.

Here’s a step that most people miss when they cold call. As soon as they realize that prospects have a need for their solution, they start thinking, “Great, that means they’re interested.”

What they don’t ask is, “Is this need a top priority for you or your organization to solve, or is it something that’s on the back burner for a while?”

In other words, even if you both determine that there ia a problem you can solve, you have to ask whether solving it is a priority. Sometimes there’s no budget, or it isn’t the right time. It’s important that you find this out, because months later you'll regret not knowing this earlier.

Putting the Pieces Together

Have you ever wondered where the “numbers game” concept came from?

It came from someone making a call, getting rejected, and the boss saying, “Call someone else.”

But with the new way of cold calling, it’s not about how many people you call. It’s about what you say and how you come across.

Do you remember the definition of insanity—continuing to do the same thing but expecting different results?

If you go on using the same old cold calling methods, you’ll go on experiencing the ever-increasing pain of selling.

But if you adopt a new approach and learn how to remove pressure from your initial cold calls, you’ll experience so much success and satisfaction that it’ll really change the way you do business, bring you sales success beyond your imagination—and eliminate “rejection” from your vocabulary for good.

With a Masters Degree in Instructional Design and over a decade of experience creating breakthrough sales strategies for global companies such as UPS and QUALCOMM, Ari Galper discovered the missing link that people who sell have been seeking for years.

His profound discovery of shifting one's mindset to a place of complete integrity, based on new words and phrases grounded in sincerity, has earned him distinction as the world's leading authority on how to build trust in the world of selling.

Leading companies such as Gateway, Clear Channel Communications, Brother International and Fidelity National Mortgage have called on Ari to keep them on the leading edge of sales performance. Visit http://www.Unlock-The-Cold-Calling-Game.com to get his free sales training lessons.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Ari_Galper

Regular Guy !

Finding Work that Matters!

Hi friends.... We alll work... but what really matters is finding the work that really matters... the article below will help you move in that direction...

ravi | www.teamACT.org | www.ziceholidays.com

Panning for Gold - Finding Work that Matters!

Our company has met with several clients on a weekly basis. These companies are composed of all sizes, and are from many different industries. What has become very apparent for all of them is that a lot of people are suffering from "initiative burnout" as a result of mergers, acquisitions and culture changes. To further complicate their issues, there are a lot of disconnected training efforts being initiated that create confusion among their workforce.

A well-known artist named Annie Lee has a figurine called 'Blue Monday.' This figurine shows a woman sitting on the edge of her bed, hunched over...weary before her day even begins. Does this sound familiar? What is your Monday morning like? Are you excited? Jazzed? Enthralled with what the day can bring? Or, are you more like the 'Blue Monday' figurine - but throughout the entire week? Your work life doesn't have to be like this!

When we speak with people in organizations, they tell us that they really want to make a difference; they want to do work that is meaningful and that adds value. People in the workforce are starved to find meaningful work. People need work that gets them energized and excited to go to work every day. What are people looking for? In a recent conversation with someone about their work, it was noted that he became very excited when he started to talk about the projects he was working on. These projects gave him a creative outlet. The work was intense, it allowed him to interact with people of diversity, and perhaps most important of all - he had freedom of expression. Despite the fact that there were many things he couldn't resolve in his work, the opportunities presented to him kept him excited. The work mattered to him!

We all have many projects that we could work on. The key is finding the right one. We think of this as "Panning for Gold." We all spend too much time working on the "stuff" that doesn't matter - and fail to spend enough time panning through our work to pull out those gems - those "Golden Nugget" projects that will make a difference. When we can identify those "Golden Nuggets" and focus our attention and energy on them, we start to find excitement, joy, and purpose...and become energized in our work.

Stop being robotic! Stop doing the "same old stuff!" You haven't taken the time to look at the work you are doing, and to begin to think about it in a new light. Robert Cooper, author of The Other 90%, says:

"Nothing brings out hidden qualities like passion does...many of us have lost touch with the zeal that can bring out our best."

Think back to the time of the Old West....the Gold Rush. Once news got out that there was a vein of gold identified, people from all walks of life left their jobs in anticipation of the gold they would find in the West. Most folks worked out of the streams that ran from the mountains where the gold was found. With their metal pan (with a sieve in the bottom), they scooped up the water and gravel from the bottom of the stream, sifted out the water, and rummaged through what was left hoping to find gold nuggets. In many cases the sun shined on the gold, making it flicker and glitter, allowing the prospector to see them more clearly. THAT is how to bring the passion back into your work life - Find the projects that are "Golden Nuggets" that will attract others to it. Become the gold vein for others!

Here's how to bring passion and zeal back into your work:

1. Pan: Make a list of all the projects you are currently working on. Look at them from a new perspective. Remember, we are trying to find the "Golden Nuggets!" Rate these projects based on their impact to the organization. Ask yourself, "Does this project matter? Does it make a difference? Will it add value? Is this project aligned with the key goals and objectives for the organization?" Keep panning until you sift up the "Golden Nuggets" - the projects that really matter.

2. Re-Frame: Reframe the project! In other words, connect with other people inside and outside of your organization, and discuss how you can make your projects ("Golden Nuggets") even better. As Doug Hall from Eureka Ranch would say: "Make this project dramatically different." Go for the gold! You want these projects to be memorable and to leave a legacy.

3. Sell: The easiest way to get excited about a project is to sell it to someone else. That forces us to think about what is important about the project, and why the project matters. Sit down and develop a compelling 3-minute pitch that highlights the benefits of the project and why you are in love with it. If you can't get excited about your own project, neither will anyone else! Practice the pitch with a friend. Once you feel comfortable with it, share the pitch with someone who understands nothing about the project. This will allow you to determine how clear your pitch is. Lastly, refine your pitch, print it out (in color), and put it in a visible place to remind you of why this project matters.

4. Celebrate: As you move along in life, find little wins to celebrate along the way. Take time to notice what your peers and co-workers are doing, and make it a point to acknowledge their achievements. When we do something good for someone else, not only do we feel better, but we have also made the day of someone else. Adding joy to another's life will add joy to yours.

Work doesn't have to be mundane and boring. We just have to take the time to look at where and how we are spending our time. Are we working on the "Golden Nuggets," or are we working on golden flecks...the little stuff? The projects we work on can have a big impact on our attitudes. Pan to find the "Golden Nuggets," get excited about work again, and celebrate and enjoy life!

Valarie D. Willis