"Sales reps run around like chickens with their heads cut off, all because they think they don't have enough hours in every day to do what they need to do to make sales; however, this is anything but true."
Rumbauskas continues, "The problem is that most salespeople continue to make cold calls as their primary prospecting method, without realizing that cold calling is extremely time-intensive and gives a negative return on time invested."
According to Frank, cold calling consumes at least 50% of a salesperson's prospecting time, while generating only 1% of the returns!
Instead of spending time making more and more cold calls, or looking for better cold calling scripts and searching the web for cold calling tips, the answer is to stop cold calling entirely.
Rumbauskas gives these five examples of better sales prospecting methods that salespeople can begin using immediately:
1. Networking. Business networking is the oldest and still one of the best ways to generate leads. According to Ed Keller and Brad Fay, authors of The Face-To-Face Book: Why Real Relationships Rule in a Digital Marketplace (Free Press, 2012), over 90% of business networking still takes place face-to-face, despite all the craze about social media.
2. Free Speaking. This is one of the most powerful ways to build a large, and desirable clientele, fast. Rotary clubs, Chambers of Commerce, business school alumni groups, and many more service organizations seek free speakers for their weekly or monthly luncheons and meetings. These groups are usually filled with business owners and executives who make desirable prospects. Offering to speak for 20 minutes at an event not only gets you exposure in front of them, but also makes you an authority figure.
3. LinkedIn. LinkedIn has become the premiere online business networking site, and in many ways it's the "new cold call." It gives you the opportunity to connect with your current clientele, find out who their peers and colleagues are, and in turn connect with them and convert them into new clients. You can also get active in LinkedIn groups - groups where your target prospects hang out - and build visibility and credibility by participating there.
4. Blogging. Starting and writing for your own blog, with informational posts that are content-rich and helpful to prospective clients, will give you a big boost in online visibility, and will attract new potential clients. Have visible contact information and even an email newsletter signup form on all pages of your blog. This will also build credibility with prospects who find you in other ways, because sales prospects are now Googling salespeople to check them out before buying.
5. Trade shows and business expos. Did you know that booths at trade shows and business expos run by Chambers of Commerce and Business Journals cost as little as a few hundred dollars? This is a prime opportunity to meet large numbers of prospective customers while positioning yourself as an authority figure who can afford to do such a thing, and not just another salesperson.
Start with these simple tips and you'll find that your free time increases exponentially, while you never have the need for cold calling again!