Having been on the receiving end of cold calls for more years than I care to remember, I'm continually surprised that companies continue to employ cold calling methods to generate new business.
By cold call I mean one that is completely unsolicited. One where no indication has been given that the service they offer is either wanted or needed.
So far this week I've dealt with 8 cold calls and it's Thursday; I've had worse weeks but generally I'd like much better weeks and that means no cold calls at all.
As a B2B marketer I have a keen interest in how businesses generate leads and I'm acutely aware of how outbound marketing such as cold calls are failing to achieve the results they once did.
And yet we are still inundated by cold calls!
Beyond the obvious ROI issues associated with cold calls there are also wider implications to a business's reputation and brand - the negative effect of cold calling.
Calling someone with a proposition means interrupting whatever they may be doing at the time. That's annoying right?!
It's not the person calling I dislike, oh no, it's the company they represent. The company that employs and trains their staff to call up poor, unsuspecting people like me.
Their reputation is tainted and their brand damaged.
Cold calling may achieve results but it's at the expense of reputation and reputations take a long time to establish.
There is a better way and it's called Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing strategies help organisations establish who is actually interested in their products or services before attempting to contact them.
The art of it is allowing people to self-select themselves as interested in your offering. A better experience for the customer and the sales person - and NO cold calling.
How it works
People now research online, looking for solutions and information that will help reach purchasing decisions.
The key for any organisation is to be found online by the very people who are likely to be interested in their offering. This requires careful planning, the production of great content and the development of a website that converts visitors into qualified leads.
Sales people will spend more time talking to people who have actually expressed an interest:
Better conversion rates
Better ROI on sales efforts
No negative impact as a result of cold calls
The list goes on
Rant over - for more information on Inbound see below!