List Building

Cold Call List Building

George Clay

 Building quality prospecting lists includes data entry about each prospect you contact and what your conversation covers during your call.

Building quality prospecting lists
Me doing real-time data entry during the call while key points of conversation are still fresh in my mind.

For me, real-time data-entry is key to building quality prospecting lists.

Key data points to capture include:

Your prospect's interest level in your goods or services.

Identify their needs…learn about existing suppliers… and how YOU can pre-empt the competition.

Ask the qualifying questions to make certain your offer matches their needs.

Learn their “hot buttons” --- what is it you can do for them that matters most.

Use real time follow-up by phone for interacting with your prospect  base and developing their interest in what you can do for them.

REAL time follow-up calls mean you engage your prospects with some inter-active, one to one Q&A.

These calls establish good rapport...forward the sales process..and keep your prospects and your customers from drifting away.

cold call list building
George Clay

For outreach qualifying calls to new prospects try list-building your prospects into three categories.

A. reachable prospects during day

B. reachable prospects after hours

C. reachable only during day and only via gate-keeper

cold call list building
Cold call list building in action!

List-building is especially helpful when you reach the gate-keepers.

I politely say "sorry, I dialed the wrong number", but flag for call back after hours to reach owners who usually work late.

Exceptions are gate-keepers for high-level exec --- especially the larger organizations. These gate-keepers usually worthwhile.

Gate-keepers you reach no matter when you call is where I draw the line and suggest dropping them from your cold call outreach.

Also, voice mail or leaving messages with gate-keepers I have found ineffective on first calls to new prospects.

Getting  Appointments From Cold Call List Building

Quality appointments do not happen overnight.

cold-call list building
Cold call list-building process

Routine follow-up calls plus e-mail follow-ups work wonders to get you in the door for a face-to-face meeting.

Also, business development marketing by phone is a form of direct marketing.

And building a highly targeted database is the key to any successful direct marketing campaign.

Therefore, view each call as a means for fine tuning your business development database.

Cold call list building is a work in progress that never ends!

business development cold calling
George Clay

Effective business development cold calling is a skill---one that can be learned, honed, perfected.

Phone prospectors --- the really good ones --- can work any industry.

Technical data and industry buzz words are helpful.

But over the phone skills ---genuine savy...good etiquette --- are even more important.

Never "Wing It". Use a script. It keeps repetitions, omissions and improper sequencing out of your pitch.

Keep It Short. Make your introduction brief and to the point.

How brief? Twenty to thirty seconds! That's all you get.

So be accurate, concise,and persuasive. Are you starting to see why you need a cold calling script?

R-e-l-a-x. Dialog and delivery in movies, TV, and plays flows from carefully crafted scripts. Yet these staged conversations sound completely natural and -spontaneous.

Effective cold call prospecting is no different.

Subtle inflections and pauses make your presentation more natural and far more believable.

Do this when cold calling!

Prospect Qualify. Good prospects...weak prospects?

Find out who's who by asking specific questions.

For example, "Does this interest you?" Or "When would you like me to recontact you"?

Make prospect qualify questions part of every cold call script!

Test, Test, Test ----but control your variables carefully.

Be especially careful with key words or phrases.

You might think they don't matter, but they do!

So once you find a winning script, stick with every word of it!

Question: Does effective business outreach cold calling require a background in the industry or markets you are calling?

Answer: Surprisingly, industry specific knowledge about the business segments you are calling is NOT essential.

Tone of voice is key

Your ability to bond with someone --- usually a complete stranger if you're cold calling --- will have more to do with your tone of voice than anything else.

See my post: How To Make A Successful Phone Introduction

But too many sales managers  insist only salespeople with deep understanding of the markets they are selling can do business development cold calling.

It's myth based on lack of real-world testing and experience rather than tested cold call business experience.


Marketing Direct is the most personalized business development service you will ever come across. I engage your prospects one-to-one in a way that builds trust and helps your business grow. Call my style "old school" but it works! By filling out this form I guarantee I will personally receive your email and be in touch with you within 24 hours.

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