This is an example of a cold call that I received from what I believe is a fintech startup or a financial services provider. Overall, I think it was a pretty good cold call, and here is my review of what went well and what he could have done better.

What Went Well
I think the salesperson on this call did a good job of communicating the key value that he offered. Instead of opening up by going into some description about the service that he wants to sell me, he very concisely shared the area where he can decrease my costs and that is by eliminating my wire transfer fees.

Right after stating that, he moved very quickly to a key qualifying question asking if I use wire transfers. When I said that I do not use wire transfers, he disqualified me very quickly and let me go so that he could then go to find a better prospect to talk to. I classify this as doing something well because I believe that too many salespeople try to sell their products to prospects that don’t fit well and this usually just leads to the salesperson wasting valuable time.

What Didn’t Go Well
I personally did not like how this salesperson opened the example of a cold call as he did it by asking me how I was doing and then saying “Happy Friday”. Maybe it is more of a stylistic critique but I think opening a call like this is too salesy and cheesy for my taste.

I actually recommend to salespeople to not ask prospects how they are doing on cold calls if you have never spoken before because it is an empty gesture that just appears as an attempt to manufacture rapport and you open the call by wasting time with an empty exchange. Replace that question with “Have I caught you in the middle of anything” as this changes you from being cheesy and salesy to being respectful and familiar.

He also asks in this example of a cold call if I remember the email he sent me. I don’t know what the goal of that question is but I don’t think you should ever ask a prospect about their knowledge about your other call attempts, emails, voicemails, etc. Yes, communicate in many different ways and many different attempts but do not call out the prospect on their memory or knowledge of your other attempts because it has a high probability of creating an awkward moment in the conversation.

What He Could Have Done Differently
The are a couple of things the salesperson could have done differently in this example of a cold call. First, I believe that the goal of the cold call should be to start a conversation and not to sell the product. Maybe my answer about wire transfers gave him the conclusion that I am not worth his time. But maybe that conclusion is more aligned with the goal of trying to sell his service and if he focused on the goal of starting a conversation, he could have focused on just talking to me about the subject of wire transfers.

And you might think that sounds silly based on the answer that I gave him but as I think about it more, I have had situations where I needed to pay some of our overseas software developers with wire transfers and maybe I would have remembered that during a conversation with him about wire transfers.

Another thing he could have done on this call is that instead of disqualifying me and moving on for us to never talk again, he could have sent me his information as my situation could change and he could coach me to reach out to him when we reach a point where my “no’ becomes a “maybe”.

We hope this example of a cold call helps you to get some ideas of how you can improve your calls and sales efforts!