Your inbound marketing tactics are working great. Your social media outreach, email marketing messages and content marketing efforts are paying off in new leads and conversions. But if you’re not using outbound marketing too, you could be leaving money on the table.
That’s the conclusion of a new survey of 1,000 IT decision-makers at Fortune ranked, midsize and small companies by DiscoverOrg. The survey examined how outbound sales calls and emails affect vendor selection. Out of the 1,000 decision-makers, nearly six in 10 reported that receiving an outbound call or email had led to them evaluating a vendor. And some 75 percent of the decision-makers said that receiving an outbound email or phone call had convinced them to set up an appointment with a vendor or attend a vendor event.
As this study shows, relying on inbound marketing alone isn’t enough to push your sales to their full potential. You need to integrate outbound marketing into your strategy, too. One of the best outbound marketing tactics is also the most old-fashioned: cold calls. Phone calls are rarer than they used to be and as such, can make you stand out to decision-makers who are inundated with emails all day long. They can also personalize your business to a degree that inbound marketing can’t.
Try these five tips to warm up your cold calls:
- Prepare ahead of time. Nothing’s more annoying than a cold call from someone who clearly knows nothing about you. Research the prospect’s company ahead of time before you make the call so you can show familiarity with their current challenges and goals.
- Send an email a day or two before you call letting the prospect know you’ll be calling. This tactic can actually make them more likely to take your call because they feel obligated to make up for ignoring your email.
- Try calling at odd times, like slightly before or after a company’s normal business hours, to catch busy decision-makers when they’re actually in their office and maybe even answering the phone.
- Use your connections. If you were referred to the prospect by a colleague or customer, or if you have another connection with them, don’t hesitate to bring it up. This can get your foot in the door and make the prospect more likely to speak with you.
- Focus on the prospect, not yourself. Fear of rejection is natural and it’s why most of us hate making cold calls—but that fear is a big reason cold calls fail. Successful cold callers don’t worry about their own feelings getting hurt, but focus instead on the value they can offer to the prospect.
If a prospect agrees to meet with you or let you send him or her more information, be sure what you send or leave behind integrates inbound marketing. Put your website URL on business cards, brochures, presentation PowerPoints or other leave-behind materials. This way, the prospect can visit your website and educate himself or herself about what your business offers.
Use CRM to track your outbound marketing efforts, remind you to follow up, and monitor which tactics garner the best results.
Want more marketing tips you can use? Register for the Web.com Small Business Forum Online. Being a member of the Small Business Forum enables you to ask questions about online marketing, comment on our numerous articles, get to know other small business owners and receive special offers on business services from our partners. Sign up now to accelerate your online marketing potential!