Looking to build strong, loyal, revenue-generating relationships with prospects? Then read on to find out how prospecting can actually help…
The Sales Pro: “I don’t cold call because I want to build relationships.”
Recently I’ve had a number of conversations with sales professionals who tell me they do not cold call because they want to build relationships with prospects.
I’m confused. Who says the two are mutually exclusive?
Every relationship, whether business or personal, begins somewhere. Everyone that you currently know (except, perhaps your mother), your significant other, your colleagues at work, your friends or your neighbors were unknown to you at one time. Then, somehow, you met and over time formed a relationship. Relationships don’t happen instantly (even with love at first sight). Relationships build over time.
In sales there are many ways to contact and reach out to new prospects. Picking up the telephone and introducing yourself is one of those ways.
One of the major stereotypes about prospecting is that a cold call is about instantly closing a sale on the telephone in just one call. When talking about prospecting many sales professionals throw everything they know about relationship building with prospects out the window. They think they have to somehow manipulate a prospect into buying from them in one phone call. This is one of the reasons why so many struggle with prospecting. Very few people want to be manipulative and manipulation actually doesn’t work very well.
A cold call is simply your introduction. It’s not a sale and it’s not a relationship. It’s the introduction and potentially the start of a relationship. That is all it is. And you still need to do everything that you normally would do to build a relationship with a prospect.
Bottom line, you cannot start a relationship with someone that doesn’t know you exist and/or someone who will not talk to you. Step 1: Introduce yourself. Step 2: Build the relationship.