Many of us are familiar with this problem. We are often agitated when a telemarketer calls us out of the blue and robs us of our precious time. Even though we know the person is only doing his job. But in many cases this job should perhaps be done differently? When was the last time you bought something based on a cold canvassing call?
LinkedIn has changed the business playbook in a lot of ways. The phone is still difficult to do without, but it is no longer necessarily the best tool for introducing yourself and your product.
In fact, more and more people leave the phone on their table when it comes to generating new leads, and cold canvassing becomes an increasingly less popular approach in sales.
The Entrepreneur offers five reasons, in this article, why you shouldn’t use cold canvassing:
LinkedIn has become the world’s biggest tool for sales information, and with this digital platform you don’t even have to make cold calls. And what is cold calls really? They appear out of the blue, without reference, without information, without relationship, without established trust and credibility and without documented qualification. They are just cold.
On the other hand, we have contact through LinkedIn, which is built on references, relationships, recommendations, groups, discussions, sales information and documentation. They are “warm” calls between people – both new and established relationships.
According to LinkedIn, who don’t hide the fact that they are fighting cold sales, traditional cold canvassing has an efficiency rate of merely 3 % on account of insufficient understanding and information about potential leads. However, 75 % of all B2B buyers use social media as an integrated part of their decision process.
LinkedIn emphasizes a call center study from Florida which shows that a phone call that begins by pointing out that both caller and recipient are members of the same LinkedIn groups has a 70 % bigger chance of turning into an actual deal. Mutual contacts, groups and interests are a goldmine for creating warm leads.
One of the most efficient ways to completely avoid making a call and instead use LinkedIn for making contact with potential leads is LinkedIn’s private message application for professional users. It allows people to get to know you on their own terms and in their own time. A well written message can efficiently link you to people and potential business opportunities.
However, this requires that you use LinkedIn with much consideration and strategy. We are all busy, but take the time to get to know LinkedIn. Make a plan so you don’t end up wasting your own time or the time of others with rushed and unprofessional enquiries.
Author and entrepreneur expert Stephen Key offers advice on how to write direct messages in LinkedIn, which have a much greater effect, instead of using cold canvassing:
The sales call isn’t dead. Far from it. But in certain cases the sales person’s talents may perhaps be exploited better in warm processes instead of cold calls. For instance by using social media such as LinkedIn that can generate a warm introduction to people even before the phone is put to use.
See our videos with Morten Vium from ViumMedia, where he explains how you create and maintain business on LinkedIn and how valuable dialogue can lead to sale.
Also see our videos with Ole Bach Andersen from Newsperience, where he explains LinkedIn as an efficient tool for social selling, indirect and direct sales.