Cold Calling: Tips and Scripts from the #1 Sales Training Expert

Do you want to know how to make a cold call?

At some point in your career, you will be required to call someone you don’t know to get something you want.

If you get your phone game on, you will get more confidence, have higher levels of activity, and a bigger bank account.

To get things you desire but don’t yet have, you will have to cold call in life.

cold calling expert

A cold call is much different than a warm call. A warm call refers to calling a prospect with whom you’ve had some prior connection between yourself and the prospect.

Warm calls could come from a previous sales call, a referral, a past appointment, an internet lead, someone you met at an event, or a response to an ad.

Meanwhile, a hot prospect has called you and raised his hand, “I want the product, when can we schedule a time to show it to my people?”

The Cold Call Defined

The cold call is the solicitation of business from potential customers who were not anticipating such an interaction.

Cold calling is a technique where a salesperson, technician or service person contacts individuals or businesses who have not previously expressed an interest in the product or services being offered.

Cold calling typically refers to phone calls but can also entail drop-in visits, such as door to door.

The willingness to call those not yet known is one of the great traits of highly successful entrepreneurs and business people.

The willingness to contact and get meetings with people you don’t yet know to get what you have not yet gotten is cold calling.

My personal definition of cold calling is that the beast makes the cold call while the excuse makers scream and cry.

I say this because many people hate using the phone to cold call.

Why? Let me count the reasons:

  • Everyone wants to go to heaven but no one wants to die.
  • Everyone wants to have a six-pack but don’t want to put in the time.
  • Everyone wants to be the boss but won’t go out on their own.
  • Everyone wants to be a millionaire but won’t spend $1000.
  • Many people are good at adding and bad at multiplying.
  • Most people don’t value your time.

phone sales

Cold Calling can be difficult, but you will not advance your career or business without making a cold call at some point.

Remember that those willing to do the things others won’t do, will create the life they want, but don’t yet have.

Who needs to make cold calls?

Here are just a few examples of people who must get great at the cold call:

  • Startups

  • Sales Organizations
  • Direct Marketing and Network Marketing Groups

  • Job Search

  • Inventors and Technology

  • Agents—Entertainment, Sports, Celebrity, PR, Promoters, Deal Makers
  • Real Estate Industry—Buyers, Sellers, Brokers, Syndicators
  • Investment Funds
  • Fund Raisers

  • Professional Community—Bankers, Lawyers, Accountants, Politicians
  • Doctors, Chiropractors, Dentist, Salon Practitioners

  • Service Industry—Landscapers, Roofers, Plumbers, Contractors

Who makes cold calls? Anybody that wants money makes cold calls!

If you’re a startup, why are you borrowing money? Mark Cuban says the dumbest thing you can do is to go borrow money to start a company.

Why would you do that?

Because you are chicken.

There are 28 million businesses in America. All of them did a business plan and nobody knows how to make a call.

You’re scared to go make the call they didn’t teach you in college.

They don’t teach this in college—guaranteed. Harvard, they ought to have my cold calling program in their business school.

cold call skills

If you can make a cold call, you have freedom. The phone is a multiplier. The phone is a way for me to talk to 15 people in 15 minutes.

I got frequent before I got great.

The average American makes eight calls a day. That’s around 250 calls a month and 3,000 calls a year.

And the average American, I want to remind you, is living paycheck to paycheck.

You need the cold call.

The Purpose of Cold Calling

There are many benefits to cold calling:

  • It’s very cost effective—about 6 x more so than direct mail or advertising.
  • You preempt and dominate the competition.
  • You save yourself time by cold calling
  • It helps you identify and create opportunities while crashing through obscurity.
  • It builds your reputation and establishes new relationships.
  • It also empowers you.

These are all great benefits and reasons for you to start cold calling.

Small Business Help

The primary purpose of the phone wasn’t created for the purpose of communication. Alexander Graham Bell created the telephone to save time.

He said, “Watson! Get over here!”

That was better than him walking down the hallway and grabbing Watson, right?

I used to cold call companies on foot. I would travel to a city, fly in, rent a hotel, rent a car, spend two weeks in San Antonio, two weeks in Salt Lake City, two weeks in Ft. Lauderdale, two weeks in Indianapolis etc. calling on business owners door-to-door. It took a lot of time.

After a while of traveling across the country cold calling door to door, I realized the primary reason the phone was created was not to communicate first, it was to save time and be able to communicate to people at a distance and have them do something for you without having to walk through the house, through the hall, across town, or even across states.

So, while there are many benefits to cold calling, saving time is at the top of the list.

Salesforce has said the average cost of customer contact using a telephone to make a sales calls is $33.11 per call and the average cost of a field sales calls is $276.48 per call.

This is because it takes time and energy to go someplace to talk to someone. Using your phone saves you time and resources!

Besides saving time, what is the primary purpose of cold calling?

The primary purpose of the cold call is to close a sale.

You ultimately want to sell your offer and get it exchanged for money.

This is the goal.

You want to make more sales and grow your business. With this in mind, there are a number of secondary purposes in the cold call you need to have:

  • Identify Decision Makers
  • Identify Influencers
  • Determine What is Needed
  • Create Interest
  • Get an Appointment

  • Get Contact Information for Follow Up
  • Move from Cold to Warm

  • Add to your Pipeline

The phone is money. You can literally reach hundreds of people in a day and really multiply your efforts.

The little device you have can literally be the single most impactful tool that you have at your disposal as a salesperson, a business owner or an entrepreneur.

If you hate the phone you’re going to be at best the big fish in a little, contaminated pond.

You need to get into a big ocean where it doesn’t matter if there is a little garbage because the ocean is so big, it cleans itself up. The cold call gets you in a big ocean!

Preparing to Make a Cold Call

The cold call involves a number of things done right to be successful. Part of this is in your preparation. Here is a short list of things you need to do before calling:

  • Get Up Early
  • Workout
  • Clean Your Space/Desk
  • Do the Math
  • Build a List
  • Research/Investigate the List
  • Look for Personal Connections
  • Build a Script
  • Role Play Daily
  • Anticipate Objections 1
  • Get Calling

I go to bed early—I do this so I can wake up early.

I control the time when I go to sleep at night at about 9 or 10 o’clock.

I know I won’t be producing something late at night, most people after 10pm are getting in trouble or taking in a bunch of garbage off the TV.

People that have problems in life typically stay up too late and they watch garbage on TV.

phone secrets

Waking up early gives me a head start on each day. I can get my mind and body right before attacking the day.

Show me the first person awake in your neighborhood and I’ll show you the most productive person in your neighborhood.

I want to see that sun pop.

I work out. Take control of your body, because if you don’t you will never have control over your day, your clients, or your money.

A proven way to make a great investment of your time and increase your confidence and energy is to exercise.

Quit looking at workouts as just exercise and a body thing and start looking at them as a way to activate your body into action and fuel your creativity.

Try the following: 10 Jumping Jacks, 10 Squats, and 10 Push-Ups.

You don’t want sticky notes all over your desk and have a cluttered mess. Don’t spend much time organizing, but have your environment clean because stacks of paper scattered around you is not going to help you.

Then start doing your math.

Doing your calculations is vital to your success because it will show you what you need to be doing.

Here is an example of one person’s calculations:

call calculations

If you never do the math you will never get rich.

In the example above, their desired income is $344K, so in order to hit that they will need to make 5,733 calls.

Divide those numbers and you will find the value of each call is $60. If you go 10X and make 191 calls, each call is worth $6.

This is a more positive way to look at each call, knowing that each call is worth a certain dollar amount. I want to know what I’m getting paid on every call.

cold call career

master cold call

You need volume and margin to create the income you desire.

The 7 things that will determine your calculations include:

  1. Qualified Able Buyers
  2. Talking to Decision Makers
  3. Presentation Skills
  4. Sales Skills
  5. Negotiation Skills
  6. Closing Skills
  7. Follow Up Skills

Creating Your Cold Call Script

There are five parts of the call. I will overview each part now and give examples later. Every script will need to follow this outline, and you will need to nail each part of the call.

#1 The Greeting

This should be one name only. I don’t want you saying my name’s Grant Cardone, and I don’t want you to use the name of the company at this point. Quit using your first and your last name.

My name is Joe,” not a last name ever, “from Grant Cardone’s office,” unless you work for a company that is well known like Coca-Cola, or JP Morgan—somebody with a lot of status, you would say, “This is Joe from Grant Cardone’s office.

#2 Reason You Are Calling and Big Claim

This is the game of money, and money follows attention. You must be interesting first. You must grab and hook attention.

Nobody opens a door to somebody they don’t know to find out their name, they open the door to find out what the hell you’re doing on their porch.

What is the reason you are calling? Why are you in my face, why are you on the phone?

Hey Mr. Cardone, how are you doing today?”

Did you really call me to ask me how I’m doing?

Nobody likes that.

How’s the weather down there?”

Stop it, you aren’t a weather reporter.

Quickly give your reason for calling and make your BIG claim.

This is Joe from Grant Cardone’s office, Mr. Cardone asked me to call and give your company a tool he created that has increased sales at companies like yours by as much as 40%.”

#3 Qualify the Lead

Make sure you qualify quickly by asking either what the reoccurring problem is, the magic problem, and the money question. You also need to find the decision maker.

I’m qualifying the customer now:

This is Joe from Grant Cardone’s office, Mr Cardone, the owner, asked me to call and give your company a tool he created that has increased sales at companies like yours by as much as 40%. To be sure I’m not wasting your time and that I can actually help you, tell me, how many sales people do you have?”

What is the reoccurring problem?

What are your two biggest recurring problems you’ve experience with sales people?”

What is the magic problem?

If I could snap my fingers and solve this problem, or if you believed in magic and we could solve a problem, what would it be?”

Number three, the money question:

Why would you guys spend money on this?”

#4 Appointment

When can we get together? Can we get together tonight? If I can make time tonight, can you see me tonight?

I’ve taken phone calls at 8:00 at night and said, “Hey, can we do this in 30 minutes or 10:00 tonight?” Then shut it down and close.

#5 Close

You help someone make a decision and you can exchange something of value.

sales tips

I create scripts for companies, and say, “This is going be your killer script.”

They take their sales force, go out into the marketplace, use their pitch, and then we start refining it, customizing it, changing it, altering it, working it, turning into a scientific, codified way for you to be effective on the phone, and in front of somebody.

Number one, always be transparent and straight-forward.

Second, you have to be interesting and interested.

Now, Dale Carnegie became famous for this whole “be interested” but the reality is you have to be interesting first. You must be interesting in order to get anybody’s attention.

Believe you can make a sale on every call.

You must believe, that you can make a sale on every call. I believe every time I pick up the phone, I can make the sale. Every call I go into believing I’m closing this deal down.

You must identify and solve problems—be logical and structured. Be respectful, be enthusiastic, be memorable, be entertaining, and be credible using third party data.

Next, I will give you some example scripts to show you how this can work for you in reality.

Cold Call Scripts

A good cold call is like a good elevator pitch. If you can’t sell your offer in 20 seconds you don’t know your pitch.

Let me tell you the wrong call.

The wrong call is: “I am Joe Smith from Grant Cardone’s offices. We are the leader in sales training getting a 40% increase in your sales results. I would like to meet with you to discuss how our company can benefit your company. Can I get a time this week to show you, and would early in the week or late in the week be the right time?”

That is the wrong way.

  • First and last name greeting—wrong
  • Immediately going for the appointment— wrong
  • No qualifying—wrong
  • Being vague with the length of appointment time—wrong

The right way to make this call is:

Hi I’m Joe from the office of Grant Cardone and Mr. Cardone, the owner, asked me to call and give your company a tool he created that has increased sales at companies like yours by as much as 40%. To be sure I’m not wasting your time and that I can actually help you, tell me, how many salespeople do you have?” (wait for answer)

What are your two biggest recurring problems you’ve experienced with salespeople?” (wait for answer)

If I could accomplish half of what I’ve stated, 40% increase in sales, would you make time to see me?” (wait for answer)

Other than yourself, who else would be involved in the order to understand how you might use this?” (wait for answer)

When is a good time to get your full attention for about 18 minutes?”

Now, the two examples above are radically different calls. One’s the right way, one’s the wrong way. And these are just slight variations.

For more on this stuff, get on my Phone Sales Mastery Program now.

cold call skills

 

Here is the structure of an outbound cold call for your script:

Greet, Reason, Qualify.

This is ____________ with _________________________________ The reason I am calling is __________________________________ .

To be sure I am not wasting your time let me ask you…

  • Do you qualify?
  • What are the main issues?
  • Why have you not done this already?

Magic question – If I could even do 1⁄2 of what I have promised…

Decision Maker

Other than yourself who would be involved with this decision?

Appointment Write

Would you make time to meet me later for X minutes? Do you have a pencil handy? Write this down.

Lock Close

Would there be any reason you wouldn’t be able to show up?

The structure of an outbound warm call for your script will look the same but your reason for calling will be slightly different, for example: “The reason I am calling is you entered your information on our website last night expressing an interest in…

You will need to practice!

Making Your First Cold Call

Each time you have a new list ready, do a little pre-call investigation. Here are 5 things you should do before dialing:

  • List of common problems your customer will pay to solve
  • Seek out personal connections
  • Search for media coverage of the prospect
  • Check out prospects website
  • Search social media pages for inside information

The first twenty seconds are critical for your call.

  • Who are you?
  • What’s in it for me?
  • Why are you calling them?
  • Where did you get their name?
  • What’s in it for the buyer?

Every call should have a hook. It creates interest. You have to be interesting and you have to lay hooks into the receiver of the communication.

If you nail the greeting, qualify the buyer, and are able to get to the appointment part, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Do not commit availability of appointment as a possibility.
  • Always offer today as the first choice. “If I could make time available would you make time today?” You want to create urgency.
  • Always offer alternative times once you get a day available.
  • Do not interject a time–let the prospect pick.
  • Always lock the appointment. “Would there be any reason you couldn’t make it on that day?”
  • Confirm the appointment the day of with a text.
  • Never make the prospect wrong for being a no-show.

Solid appointments with the right person improve your ability to close from 10% to 67%.

To consistently get appointments, you will have to deal with objections.

You will constantly hear objections on the phone like:

  • Not Interested
  • Need to talk to a spouse 

  • Let me think about it
  • Leave me some information
  • Don’t have time 

  • Don’t have the Budget
  • It’s a bad time

  • I need to try it for awhile

  • I didn’t use the last one

  • I bought something like it

  • I never make a rash decision
  • Price is too much

You need strategies to deal with things like this. You must anticipate objections and know exactly what you will say when you get them. This is why I created Cardone University.

career change

Do you believe that you can sell anyone, anytime, anywhere?

Do you believe your product is worth 10 times what you charge for it? Because if you do, you will hammer, you will press, you will push, you will not stop when you hear an objection, whether it’s valid or invalid.

When you hear a complaint, it won’t stop you anymore when you’re completely sold.

Do you know your pitch cold?

Do you go into every call with nothing to lose and everything to gain?

Do you believe that you’re the lowest price even when you’re not?

Because if you don’t believe that, you’re not going to make cold calls for long. You have to believe you’re the lowest price even when you’re not because you’re the best value, you’re the lowest price.

Can you treat somebody respectfully when they’re hanging up on you?

How many times have you told somebody on the phone, “I’m not interested” and they just hung up on you?

It’s not respectful and they lost their game in that moment. You don’t want that to happen.

success on phone

My hardest calls always go first in the day. I eat the meal before I eat the dessert.

Build a list, research and investigate that list. Maybe I do a Google search, maybe I go to LinkedIn or Facebook. Maybe I search “media” and this person’s name to find out more about them.

Look for personal connections. Do I know anyone? Are we friends in a social group? Are we part of a same club? Are we maybe part of the same charity?

I found out when I moved from Los Angeles to Miami that there was a client here that I wanted to do business with, so I did a little research and found out he was a big fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club. That was my opening.

Then I built a script.

You have to have a script.

If you don’t like my scripts, if you don’t think my scripts are going to work, then build your own script and I guarantee you even if you don’t like my scripts, use the structure of it to build a script that you want to build for yourself.

Keep in mind also that you never do just one call. If you aren’t successful on the first try you will contact the prospect again and follow up. It can be a process—the first caller gets 50% of the market but the last to call gets the rest!

phone economics

I have already made hundreds of thousands because of Grant Cardone training.” —Billy Merritt

I sold over a half million dollars in sales last year in fireplace repairs…in Los Angeles where it is hot almost year round.” —Aiden Angeli

Our business is up 36% over last year. We are now properly following up on clients & closing previously missed deals thanks to Grant Cardone” —Derek Cole

I went from bankrupt to 6 figures. I am living proof!” —Adam Webster

“I signed up for Cardone University and made $250k last year.” —Tim Brooks

 

If this blog has been helpful to you for cold calling, consider investing in my complete cold calling program—Phone Sales Mastery.

Be Great,

GC

P.S. You can also subscribe to my newsletter HERE

Showing 3 comments
  • Danell
    Reply

    I hate cold calls, but I know you are absolutely correct on this.

  • Nelya Mushiyeva
    Reply

    when I am called calling I forget everything I had to say and read. I believe in practice makes perfect, it’s the initial attempts that are daunting. i love these live videos, it helps a lot seeing someone else in action

  • Mitch
    Reply

    Awesome article Grant, I always love your content and message.

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