It can be very understandable for a salesperson to have questions around how many cold calls to make to a prospect before either moving on or before starting to appear to be a pest. We will try to outline a process in this blog post and video to help with that question.

You are Most Likely not Calling Enough
Before we outline a process to answer the question of how many cold calls to make to a prospect, first realize that you are probably not calling your prospect enough in terms of call attempts. One reason to operate with this assumption is that, when calling B2B, decision makers are rarely in their office as they can often spend the majority of their day in meetings or can be out of the office traveling on business.

This means that, if you are calling someone at their desk and they are rarely there, you will need to call a number of times to simply catch them at their desk when you call.

Use a Mix of Voicemail Messages and Calls without a Voicemail Message
If you are going to call the prospect a lot, you will want to skip leaving a voicemail message on most calls as this will provide more freedom for you to keep calling back without looking too much like a “sales stalker”.

When thinking about how many times to cold call a prospect, you can call a prospect multiple times in one day or in one week if you don’t leave a message as you are operating under the assumption that you missed them and they don’t know to call you back so you are calling them back again and this is perfectly acceptable to do in fairly short time windows.

Although the voicemail box is one way to communicate with a prospect that never answers the phone and you can use this time to leave some sort of commercial message about why the prospect would find it a valuable use of their time to talk with you.

Try to Communicate to the Prospect in Multiple Ways
Since it is going to be tricky to time it right to catch the prospect when they are at their desk, not only do we need to increase the call attempts but it can also help to try to reach the prospect in different ways.

We just talked about leaving voicemail messages. As an extension of that, we will try to call, try to email, periodically leave voicemail messages, and when we leave voicemail messages, we will send voicemail follow-up emails right after the calls where we do leave a voicemail message.

It is no doubt difficult to get prospects to answer the phone, to respond to emails, and to take any action from voicemail messages. But if we use the three communication methods in a very persistent, yet coordinated way, we can improve our ability to get connected with prospects.

An Example of a Call Cadence
We use a call cadence process to help with how many cold calls to make to a prospect as this will provide a structure for how to organize all of the call attempts, emails, calls with voicemail messages, and calls without voicemail messages. This call cadence is broken down into 4 rounds of trying to reach out to the prospect and here is what is in each round:

Round 1: This is your first time reaching out and we think you should call and email the prospect first. After that, go ahead and leave them a voicemail message. You can also send a voicemail follow-up email depending on how much time is between your first email and your voicemail message.Since you are leaving a voicemail message, we recommend that you pause for a few days to a week.

Round 2: After the pause period expires, reach back out and this time call multiple times without leaving a voicemail. After either 1 to 2 weeks or 5 to 10 call attempts, leave another voicemail message and send a voicemail follow-up email and then pause again.

Round 3: After the pause from Round 2 expires, call the prospect again similar to how you did in Round 2 without leaving a voicemail and if you cannot get connected with the prospect in 1 to 2 weeks or 5 to 10 call attempts, leave another voicemail message and send a voicemail follow-up email and pause again. This is also a good time to try to see if there is another contact in the prospect’s organization to try to reach.

Round 4: Round 4 is similar to Round 2 and 3 in terms of activities except if you still cannot get a hold of the prospect after the call attempts in Round 4, you can then consider closing the prospect as a lead and begin to move on and stop calling the prospect.

We hope this helps you with some ideas or a process to use to answer the question of how many cold calls to make to a prospect.