I understand the allure of cold calling. Cold calling is like the Lone Ranger of business. You never have to rely upon someone else to bring you business. You have the chutzpah and the schmoozing qualities that can turn a complete stranger into a friend in less than 5 minutes, and sometimes less than 1 minute. Additionally, cold calling can be immediate, and finally you get all of the credit for the business you bring in. The challenge is that even the Lone Ranger had Tanto, and you can do so much more with warm calls than cold.
I used to make roughly 50-100 calls to get 1 deal when I was in the mortgage business. Any more calls than that without luck and the list stunk to high heaven. The only challenge was that near the end of my time in the business it was closer to 250-300 calls to get 1 solid lead. Additionally, when I cold called I always came off weaker to the prospect, because I approached them for business and they knew it.
That is why when I became the social networking schmoozer that you know today. When I transitioned into social networking consulting/schmoozing I cold called for 2 days, swore a lot at the clients who hung up on me, and then realized that this is the stupidest thing that I could ever do, and immediately decided that I needed to walk the walk, and talk the talk. I have not made one cold call since then. Instead, I have relied upon on my warm market for business.
My only sources of business right now come from networking, social networking, and referrals. It has made all the difference in my life. Instead of getting angry at being hung up on for the twentieth time in the last 5 minutes; I spend an average of 20-30 minutes with each call that I make. My challenge now is that I have to sometimes shorten the conversations, so I can call everyone that I need to reach in a given day. Plus my conversion ratio is a lot lower, probably closer to 1 in 7.
How have I been able to make these calls warm and ready for business? Every week I make a goal of attending at least 3-5 live, face to face networking events. It has become a little easier for me to do lately, since I am in two leads groups that meet in the morning.
Additionally, every Thursday is my networking day. I attend at least 2, and sometimes 3 events that day. It makes the end of the week easier, because I have a fresh stack of cards waiting for me to call on Friday.
Now, let’s move online to social networking. My goal is to make a connection through a post, forum, or direct message with at least 5-10 people every day through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or one of the numerous social networks that I belong to currently. Some days, I might not be able to go on one network, due to time constraints, but I make sure that every day or two I check what is going on at every social network that I am active in.
Furthermore, I make sure that I have at least 1 blog post up every day before noon. Yesterday was a huge mea culpa of a day that got away from me, but it is 8 AM right now as I post this blog article. I then syndicate the article to as many of my social networks as possible (Check out OnlyWire Post).
Finally, I can connect with all of the leads that I have met through networking and social networking. They come in at weird hours of the day when I least expect it, and the great thing is because I have been consistently keeping to this schedule for the past year I have it happen on a regular basis. I connect with them on the phone, over coffee (2 appointments this morning plus a client consultation), and through newer methods, such as Skype and TeamViewer.
So, is that more than you want to do in a day? Possibly? The question is how much do you want out of your day, and out of your business? Do you want your business to soar to impossible heights or just pay the bills? My belief is that cold calling pays the bills, and warm calling sends you to impossible heights. Which one do you want to do? I would love to wait for the answer, but I have an appointment I have to get to, so leave me your comments and let me know.