I recently attended a networking event for creative business owners in the Miami area. It was a meetup full of web designers, writers, photographers, interior designers, film makers and even performance artists.
One thing I found fascinating was the amount of cold-calling some of these people do to get new business! I’ve actually never cold-called in my business, every part my sales funnel takes place online. But after hearing these guys rave about how much success they were having I decided I may have to learn how to to cold call. Here are some of their tips on how to cold call your way to new business.
Realize you’re not really cold calling.
If you want to learn how to cold call your way to new business as a freelancer you have to realize that you’re not really cold calling. At least not in the traditional sense.
“It’s one thing if you’re a mechanic and you’re calling people to see if they need an oil change,” says George Cuevas, freelancer and founder of CollabMiami. In this case, it’s a yes or no answer. “It’s not really as straightforward when you’re a freelancer,” adds Cuevas.
Cuevas suggests finding some sort of connection that can lead you to the person you want to talk to. Maybe that means meeting someone at a networking event or doing some research on LinkedIn. From there, build a relationship and see if you can connect with the person you need to talk to about freelancing.
Think of it as collaborating, not selling.
As a business owner, I’m constantly getting terrible cold calls and emails from freelancers who want to work with me. They usually start off by saying, “Hey, we noticed this thing on your website sucks. I’d love to fix it for you.”
Needless to say, those get trashed.
Properly learning how to cold call as a freelancer is a lot more about collaboration than traditional sales. A simple conversation that states how much you like a company and would be interested in finding a way to collaborate can work wonders when trying to cold call your way to new business.
It’s kind of a numbers game.
When learning how to cold call for new business, you have to realize that sales is a numbers game. This is true regardless of whether you’re sending email pitches or picking up the phone.
This means you shouldn’t get bummed if the call goes to voicemail, if they don’t return your call or if they say no. If you plan to cold call your way to new business you must realize this is a part of learning how to sell.
You also shouldn’t be surprised if you bomb the sale, especially in the beginning as you learn how to cold call. Don’t get discouraged if this happens. The only way to get really good al cold calling is to keep doing it.
Properly learning how to cold call can take your sales to another level. Sometimes a good old fashioned conversation os the best way to get a new client. Truth be told, a phone call could be a nice touch in an era where everything is done online.