How to improve your business calls

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If your work involves developing new business, making business calls such as cold calls might be something you have to do. Making calls to people you don’t know might be challenging for you. Below are some tips you can use to help you pick up the phone and start making calls.

Grab a quiet meeting room and make your calls

Cold calling is about confidence. A great way to increase your confidence is to make a list of companies you want to call, grab a quiet meeting room at the office and make your calls. This way you get to practice and you won’t be self-conscious about other colleagues sitting around you and listening to your calls. Doing this also helps you to develop your pitch and what you say to potential clients on the phone.

Observe an experienced colleague make business calls

One of the most effective ways of learning is through observing others. You can improve your ability to make cold calls by asking a more experienced colleague to sit with you for half an hour and watch him or her make some cold calls. You can then model your colleague when you sit down and make calls by yourself. If your colleague is especially good, you can even imagine you are your colleague when you make your own calls.

Have a good, confident introduction ready

What makes cold calls easier is having an assertive introduction ready to say as soon as the person you’re calling picks up the phone. This could be something, “good afternoon, my name is John Davies and I’m calling from an ABC Limited”. A confident introduction will put you in good shape for the rest of the call.

Have ready the reason why you’re calling

In order to continue with a confident business call, have ready the reason why you’re calling. If your company develops products for the sector of the company you’re calling, explain what your company does and ask whether the person you’re talking with wants to know more. If he or she says yes, then you can continue with your pitch.

End the call with an action

The purpose of a business call is to get an opportunity to talk further about what you can offer to the company you’re talking with. In order to do this, arrange a face to face meeting at the end of the call or a further longer call at a later date. At the very least agree to send further material about what your company can offer to the individual via e-mail.

Confirm the meeting with an e-mail

If you arranged a face to face meeting, right after the call, send an e-mail to the person you were talking with, thanking them for their time, confirming your meeting date and time. End your message by telling him or her you look forward to meeting them.

Continue learning from your calls

Cold calling gets easier and your competence increases through practice. After each call, reflect for a short period about how the call went, what you said and how the person you were talking with responded. Make a note of how you can adapt your style the next time you make a call, so that you are continuously learning from your experiences.

My friends, it’s over to you:

Do you make business calls such as cold calls or warm calls?

How do you approach such calls?

Can you think of any other tips we can add to help us with our business calls?

Please share your views, thoughts and experiences in the comments box below.

Please also share this post on your favourite social networks.

If you liked this post, check of the latest posts of the following awesome bloggers:

Jon Mertz

Jodi Aman

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22 Comments
  1. Wonderfully written as always Hiten!

    Honestly speaking, I hardly make any calls at all! I guess my writing work is such that it’s mostly done all through emails, so I have my account open all day long as there is constant flow of emails there. But yes, if I had to choose to make any business call, it would definitely be the cold calls as you explained so well here. 🙂

    Having a quiet meeting and being firm would only show your confidence and thoughts to the other person. Yes, we do need to have a reason for calling, along with what we want to talk about and how we are going to end things up that call for action eventually, after all then alone the whole purpose would be solved.

    Congratulations on your new eBook too on “How to Cold Call With Confidence”, where I think you must’ve talked about all of this much more in detail. I wish you would give us all a tutorial some day as to how you manage to come up with such wonderful eBooks, and that too so often!

    Thanks for sharing 🙂 Have a great week ahead as well. 🙂

    1. Hi Harleena,

      Many thanks for your words of appreciation for this post! I’m really glad you liked it.

      Yes, I understand most of your work being done via e-mail, especially as your writing work is carried out online.

      I’m really glad you could resonate with the tips in the post. Indeed, with business calls there usually is an outcome that one wants to achieve to help progress potential business forward or to continue developing a good relationship with customers.

      Many thanks for your words of congratulations on my eBook. Indeed, I have been thinking of writing a post about my experiences with publishing and I will hopefully do this soon.

      Thanks a lot for commenting and have a great week, too! 🙂

  2. HI Hiten,

    Great post!

    I as a Software developer didn’t get any opportunity of making cold calls but if I would have got that, as you suggested my best learning would have been through observing others who have been doing that on regular basis.

    The important learning would’ve been how the caller has reacted or responded to the angry prospect who isn’t ready to listen to any of the good features of the product and then how to convince that sort of a
    prospect to buying something which is least interested in.

    Thanks for sharing this great share.

    Sapna

    1. Hi Sapna,

      I’m really glad you enjoyed the post!

      In one of my previous jobs, I used to observe one of my experienced sales colleagues in action and learnt a lot from him on how to cold call.

      Indeed, we can learn so much from the responses of prospects on the phone and the language they use. Very quickly, we can become skilled at determining which prospects to pursue and which ones are definitely not interested in what we are selling.

      When one is first getting into cold calling, it can be easy to take the response of a prospect as rejection. However, such objections can be overcome with the appropriate response and persistence.

      Thanks so much for adding your great insights to the post.

  3. Great advice! It is important to have a plan as well as a closed-loop process to making calls. Thanks, Hiten, for your reference, too. Very kind! Thank you. Jon

    1. Hi Jon,

      I’m really glad you appreciated the advice in this post! Absolutely, it’s important to have a plan and an end goal with business calls, so that we are maximising our efficiency and productivity.

      You’re most welcome about the mention. Thanks very much for commenting. It’s great to see you here.

  4. hi Hiten – I think the best way to make cold calls is to make warm calls. haha I have had to make my fair share of calls but usually it’s to people I know. I work in the social justice movement so rely on phone calls quite a bit to organize and motivate people to take social change – showing up for events, rally’s or to do something to improve the world around them. The difference between asking someone I know versus someone I don’t is like night and day. So the point is – sometimes in business calls especially we never know the people we’re calling but any networking, attempt to get to know someone makes a phone call much easier. Much easier talking to a friend than a stranger.

    1. Hi Vishnu,

      I loved your comment!

      Just like you, I definitely prefer warm calls. It’s always so much easier when we can tell the person we’re speaking to that a mutually known contact suggested that we call the person. It can be even easier when the mutually known person informs the potential prospect that we will be calling. This way the individual is expecting our call.

      Your work sounds really interesting and I’m fascinated about making calls to persuade people to take up social changes.

      Many thanks for commenting and sharing your experiences. I really appreciate you adding so much more to this post.

  5. Hi Hiten,
    Cold calling is something that I never enjoyed when I worked for an employer. I always preferred to engage then build up an association. Therefore warm calling was much more preferable. I adopt the same stance today…develop engagement then proceed through any sales stages as the engagement becomes warmer.
    your steps in this blog are well founded and useful for anyone involved with this type of Business calling. Thankyou.
    Be good to yourself
    David
    Life Coach. Listener. Life Lover.

    1. Hi David,

      Many thanks for sharing your experiences in this area. Absolutely, I’m definitely with you when you say you prefer to build up an association with people first.

      Thanks very much for sharing your approach when making calls. I think in the coaching world in particular, developing strong initial engagement and trust is so important, before reaching the sales stage.

      I’m really glad you liked the post and thanks very much for commenting. Your support is greatly appreciated.

  6. Hi Hiten,
    Nice post as usual, i dont know, how to handel business calls but as i read your article,it lead a great tips to make a business call more effective. yes, a proper introduction of your product in a good manner is very essential and create a great desire in respondent mind.

    1. Hi Rupali,

      I’m really glad you found the post helpful and thanks for adding your views on this topic.

      As you quite right said, a proper introduction to our products is very important to ensure we are clear to the prospect about what we sell and to help to stimulate the initial desire in the prospect’s mind.

      Many thanks for commenting, my friend.

  7. Hello Hiten, great post. I think if I had to make business call I would handle then well because I am a people person especially on the phone. In fact I think I am more of a people person on the phone then in person.

    If you’re running any business you need people skills in order to make it work.

    Thanks so much for a very interesting read my friend.

    1. Hi Rob,

      I’m really glad you enjoyed the post, my friend. It’s interesting how you’re more of a people person on the phone. You must have great phone skills.

      Indeed, as you quite rightly said, people skills are critical when running any type of business. One needs to be able to inspire, engage and lead.

      Thanks very much for adding further to this post, Rob. Much appreciated.

  8. Hi Hiten,

    A timely post by you because people are finding it a challenge to make a deal through business calls because of the uncertainty in the economy.

    I would want to add a point that my boss shared with me last evening.

    1. When you make a business call see how you can add more value and if you find that there is a need for the client then you can act a little smart by showing the demand for your product..
    He sells to top clients like National Geography, Rossetta Stone and many others..

    What do you think about this?

    1. Hi Rafi,

      I loved the point you included in your comment.

      Indeed, as your boss shared with you, after establishing the need from the client, this need can be stimulated further by demonstrating how important and popular the product is through perhaps describing case studies where it is being used.

      Thanks very much for adding this great tip to the post, Rafi.

  9. Hi Hiten,

    I particularly like having a place to practice your pitch and MODELING other successful callers. I did this in sales years ago. My brother was a genius at making sales, so I would start just listening to his sales pitches to customers in the store. He would do it like a formula. Knowing exactly WHEN to start dropping hints about the warranty he would eventually be REALLY selling later in the pitch. He would listen and nod and always bring it back to the initial need. It was an art. I believe making cold calls can be the same way.

    1. Hi Bryan,

      Thanks so much for sharing your experiences of this area. Like you, I’m also a huge fan of modelling. It was learning about modelling, which helped convince me that we can all achieve great things that we see others do.

      Your brother sounds like one heck of salesman and you’re lucky to have him as a role model. This is brilliant! I love his approach of hinting about the warranty early on in the interaction, just to help plant the seed into the prospects mind.

      Thanks a lot for adding so much more to this post. I really appreciate it.

  10. This is a great post, Hiten! That you so much for the tag! It is such a complement!
    xoJ

    1. Hi Jodi,

      I’m so glad you liked the post and you’re most welcome fot the tag!

      Have a great week. 🙂

  11. Hiten,
    I’ve made many thousands of cold calls in my career. I really like all your tips in you blog.

    Two things I found super helpful were:
    -Have a mirror in front of me so that I could see myself. Watching my own expressions was helpful to keep my positive. People can hear a smile through the phone. It works.
    A mirror also helps me feel like I’m talking to someone face to face.
    -I used to open each call with a line then try to chuckle a little. That always helped when I could work it in!

    Great stuff Hiten. I’ll be back.

    – Matthew

    1. Hi Matthew,

      Thanks so much for adding your further tips on how we can improve our cold calls!

      I just loved the advice you gave about having a mirror in front of us. I can just imagine myself doing this now, and smiling right into the mirror! Indeed, as you said, people can hear a smile through the phone.

      What you wrote about giving a little chuckle early on in the call sounds great, too. I can imagine this helping to break the ice over the phone.

      Thanks so much for adding so much more to this post, Matthew!

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