Ninety-nine percent of my sales training work nowadays comes from referrals and so it is very rare that I have to make a cold telephone sales call, but on Friday last, I came across an article in the newspaper about the CEO of a PLC whose company was experiencing a sudden and unexpected drop in sales. They operated in an field in which I had some considerable experience many years ago and I wanted to make contact and offer my services.
I briefly explored Linked In and some other social media sites to see if anyone I knew was connected to them. No result!
Rather than invest more time trying to establish a mutual connection and get a referral, I decided to pick up the telephone and make a cold call. I used one of my classic and most effective opening statements to get past the PA which was along the lines of …
I read about your CEOs current sales challenge in the newspaper today and I’ve been working with several of your competitors who were experiencing a similar problem which I’ve been able to solve for them. So could you put me through to John please, I’m sure he’ll be interested to speak with me.
That got me through to John but the reception I got from him was not quite what I expected. Without giving my statement a moments thought, he immediately responded with – NOT INTERESTED thank you! I tried a a couple of different approaches and got a similar response. Then the memories of a similar conversation that took place many years ago popped back into my mind and I asked the following question:
John, how would you like it if your salespeople were put off as easily as you are trying to put me off – do you think that just might be part of your challenge? (Silent close).
To cut a long story short, we are meeting for a coffee this week to explore how I could help them and the investment required.
Could that work for you? Please let me know when it does.
If you too want to learn how to get ninety-nine percent of your business from referrals, you can get my latest book titled ‘Winning Sales Referrals’ here. And If you want to become World Class at Telephone Sales & Appointment Setting, you can get that best selling book here.