This Article is for those just starting a business and don’t have much experience in approaching businesses or cold-calling on the phone.
To begin with…NETWORK!
The best place to start looking for clients is in your own neighborhood. Start first with your family. Do you have any uncles, aunts, nephews, cousins twice removed that are running a business that needs leads? Do THEY know of anyone that has a business that needs leads? A perfect opener is: “My cousin, Joe, said you might be interested in leads for your business!”
If you don’t want to involve your family…go to your friends. Do THEY know someone…or do they know someone who knows someone. There’s nothing wrong with finding clients from “friends of friends”…or even THEIR friends!
If you’ve exhausted that avenue or if you’re new to a city, just drive around where you live and you’ll find a LOT of businesses that needs leads. Or, at the very least, you’ll get ideas of businesses to contact!
If you’re comfortable approaching the business owners personally, that’s the best way to go. Just be friendly! Tell them that you’ve got a friend, ME, who did pretty well in supplying leads to an auto repair business, and you’d like to try the same system supplying leads to THEM. Tell them that you’re new at it, you don’t know how well it’ll go…but if they’d be willing to try an experiment to see if it’ll work, then you’d be more than happy to give it a try. This does two things…it puts them at ease by showing that you’re not just doing a pushy, hard sell on them to get their money. And, by being so casual, you will have a much more informal relationship with them. When you talk to them in the future, after you’ve made a deal, if there are any “bumps in the road” you will be able to come from a place of “I’m just learning this business” and you’ll usually find the business owner to be quite understanding and even encouraging!
Do the exact same thing on the phone!
Too many people think that “cold-calling” is some sort of mystery that only a select few are good at. That’s just not true! Just do the EXACT SAME THING as what you would do when meeting with business owners in person…JUST BE FRIENDLY! They’re people, too!
If you run into some people that are just plain rude or hang up on you…Shake it off and make the next phone call. It’s THEIR problem…NOT Yours!
The BEST Salespeople are those who are just comfortable with themselves…and make those that they are talking to comfortable as well.