For people working in sales, especially the ones who are new in the business dread to make cold calls but are required to do so. Working over the phones, a lot of people have wondered ‘how to generate sales leads without cold calling’ and have researched several tactics for the same. Sales coaches, trainers and management everywhere consider sales to be just a numbers game and preach to make the calls in order to keep their sales pipeline full.
To be honest, we understand their dilemma. No one likes being hung up on or ignored and even yelled at sometimes and doing this everyday can really be anybody’s nightmare. Moreover, your prospects hate being bothered and disturbed too, especially when they don’t know who they are talking to and for things they might not even be interested.
At the same time, however, a lot of people in sales enjoy the selling process thoroughly. They love playing the role of a trusted advisor to their prospects and the breadwinner of the company that they work in. But, they love to do this only with the prospects who actually need their products/services and are interested.
If it were a perfect world, inbound leads would have been enough to meet your requirements and fill your sales pipeline. But, unfortunately, this is not the case. The organizations that have a good flow of inbound leads still require to supplement these leads with the activities for meeting the quota.
It means that if you are cold calling today you need to continue doing so for at least until you create a steady, new source of leads to bridge the gap. Fortunately, for you, there are many ways to effectively come up with opportunities to solve the ‘how to generate sales leads without cold calling’ question.
Cold Calling Works, But Not Well Enough
A lot of industries use cold calling because it works, no doubt about that, but it has some very serious problems, like:
High burn-out rate – there is a high rate of rejection and it takes a tough soul to continue cold calling even after this
Low conversion rate – it automatically converts into high costs
Convert Leads at High Rates With Warm Calls
Warm calls are not only easy on the rejection part but they also convert at a high level. This is essentially because when you start the relationship it is based on receiving some level of trust from the prospects you are calling.
Trust Has High Weightage in The Sales
Most important point of all is that the trust provides a few crucial minutes at the beginning of your relationship with the prospect where you receive a chance to introduce your business and yourself and learn more about your prospects’ problems.
Lead Generation Approaches That Work
When you get to find the approaches for generating leads without cold calling, you will find a lot of alternatives. There are alternatives to cold calling discussed below, that the sales team can implement directly.
Generating Leads from Trusted Referrals
You have most probably seen this method a lot in the ‘how to use LinkedIn’ style blogs and courses – find out a mutual connection and then ask them to introduce you! As simple as that.
This method works pretty well and allows you to transfer some very vital trust of the warm leads to the introducer to yourself.
You can use a lot of approaches like:
Customers –Their introduction has a lot of weightage since they already know you and your business.
LinkedIn –Though this method may not work as perfectly as it used to in the past. However, if you control your networks more tightly as once people use to, you might know your and your prospects’ network.
Networking companies –Approaching chambers of commerce, business networking groups, etc.
Business colleagues – A good approach and worth giving a try.
Generating Leads through Content or Inbound Marketing
This is a personal favourite of a lot of people. In short you have to produce and share your best ideas with your prospects. When you do this, Google gets to know that you are a good source of information in your business niche and sends people to your website. When the prospects land on your website, they will see what you have got and will call you for their help. Although there are a few roadblocks when you are marketing content, it becomes worth the effort.
Fear of Losing Your IP
The real fear of businesses and consultancies that depend on their ideas for making money is the fear of sharing their IPs will make them lose their customers.
This is, however, not true at all.
There are two scenarios:
- Prospects who just want to learn about your business, in order to do it by their own, are never going to hire you, so you lose nothing.
- Prospects who have understood that they cannot solve their problem will definitely hire you to do the job.
There are people out there who would love to do what you are doing but are simply unable to do so are still going to hire you because they don’t want to risk messing up.
This makes everything positive and there is nothing to worry.
Answering Questions on Different Forums
The basic idea over here is to make the prospects aware of your existence in a specific area by answering relevant questions publically, on social media. When you do this, prospects will get to know you and will either present you with an opportunity to engage with them or reach out to you directly.
LinkedIn and Quora are giant forums in the market from where you can reap the most benefits.
You need to also consider that in case you are providing content on forums, they will be used in broader terms. Ensure that you are comfortable with that, first.
If you are still sceptical about how to generate sales leads without cold calling, you need to let the fear go and try different approaches that can get your high quality leads without phone calls.