So I’m sure that many of you are thinking about your vacation and dreaming of those days when you can relax away from the office, but make sure to take a moment and consider your cold calling strategies and how you are going to focus your time when you aren’t taking your week away from the office! Even if some businesses slow down or your contacts take a vacation in the summer, it normally never more than a week or two and it important to continue to build those relationships or get those referrals during that time! Your prospects’ attention span, buying habits and office schedule may change during the summer months.
Consider Changing up your Strategy– Some prospects may use the summer months as an easy way to push you away and request a call back once they get back to the office from vacation. Think about that objection ahead of time and be prepared for it prior to picking up the phone. Position any offers that may be running at the time as a reason to jump on making the decision sooner versus later. Make sure to have a compelling reason as to why they should consider purchasing now versus waiting until later for follow up.
Be Diligent about Listening to Voicemails– We always tell our agents to put a time limit as to how long they will work through a voicemail system or stay on hold but consider spending a little longer during this time of year. You may gain additional information that you might normally not know even if you have heard that voicemail over and over and over again. So they don’t pick up the phone when you call or don’t return a voicemail, however many people will actually refer you to another member of their team to handle calls while they are away on vacation. Listen to that message you may have heard 10 times! You may actually get the name and direct line of their manager or another colleague that can give some insight as to what is going on internally and what you may be able to help them with during the upcoming fiscal year.
Consider Email as an Option– We always talk about the importance of email and how to effectively integrate it into your overall marketing strategy but make sure that you don’t slow down during the summer time. You may be able to reach someone that you have been having trouble getting in touch with for quite some time. Try changing up the time of day you are sending your emails or making your calls to them. Sometimes we see contacts picking up the phone and responding to email before noon if they have an afternoon planned out of the office. Make sure your emails are mobile ready and that the call to action is clear, concise and placed at the top of the email. While away on vacation, many people may actually be responding from their mobile device when they have time to catch up on their email in the evening hours. And don’t forget out of office notices where they may tell you the name, number and email address of someone that you can call during their absence!
Tailor Your Message – If you haven’t done so already, learn more about your prospect situation prior to having an initial conversation with them. What benefits will they specifically gain by using the product or service you are calling about? What industry are they in and what are the hot issues surrounding their business? Spend some time researching the contact on social networking sites such as LinkedIn and see what groups they are joining. Browse the company website under the news section for information about mergers and new additions to their team. Make sure when you get someone on the phone, you are asking the RIGHT questions! Knowledge equals credibility when cold calling!
While many of these tips may not be new to your bag of tricks, make sure keep these ideas in mind or throw them back into the mix as you consider your cold calling strategies during the summer months. And don’t forget to use vacation talk as a way to build rapport with your customers and/or prospects!