Does cold calling work?” is one of the most commonly asked or debated questions. If you have asked this question, check out our webinar recording that is simply titled with that question – “Does cold calling work?“.

You can probably guess how we will answer that question, but we will spend this time together to discuss the challenges that come with cold calling and what to do (and not do) to make it work for you.

Consider a Bag of Golf Clubs

One metaphor that I like to discuss with clients when they are asking if cold calling still works is to get them to think about a bag of golf clubs. In a set of golf clubs, each club will serve a unique purpose and be different from the other clubs in terms of the amount of distance and accuracy that it can provide.

For example, a driver will hit the golf ball a long way but not be very accurate. A putter will not hit the ball very far but will be the most accurate club in the bag.

That same dynamic can be seen when you consider a set of sales and marketing tools. Search engine optimization is similar to the driver in that it can get a business exposure to a large number of people but is not really accurate as many of the website visitors that can end up at a website from a search result page might not fit well at all. On the other end of the spectrum is cold calling, and it is similar to the putter in that it takes a lot of time and energy to contact a large number of people (does not hit the ball far), but it is the most accurate tool in the bag.

The summary of this metaphor and how it answers “Does cold calling work?” is that just like the most efficient way to play golf is to use a variety of different golf clubs, cold calling works if you use it as part of a larger mix of different tools. Other tools like SEO, Pay-Per-Click advertising, and email marketing will make cold calling more productive, easier, and successful.

And look at it from the other side: if you played golf with only a putter, it would take you twice as long to play, and you would have to hit the ball four times as many times. The same logic can apply to the question of does cold calling work in that if you only use cold calling without any of the other sales and marketing tools, you can find yourself spending a lot of energy and time to get a portion of the results that you need. It is in this situation that you will find yourself saying, “no, it does not work” when answering the question, “Does cold calling work?”.