In this video, we discuss how to ask good questions on a cold call. This is a very helpful area to spend some time because one of the best ways to close the prospect at the end of the cold call is by finding a reason to keep talking. And one of the best ways to find a reason to keep talking is to ask good questions.
Types of Questions to Ask When Selling
In order to figure out how to ask good questions on a cold call, it can help to first look at some of the different types of questions that you can ask when talking with prospects.
- Current state
- Desired state
- Need to purchase
- Ability to purchase
- Authority to purchase
Types of Questions to Ask When Cold Calling
In each of those categories are a number of questions to ask and you by no means should ask all of those on a cold call. The key to how to ask good questions on a cold call is knowing that you don’t need to ask all of those, but that it also does not make sense to ask many of those when cold calling.
The way to make it clear which questions to ask and which ones to skip is to look at three goals for the questions that we ask when cold calling:
- Get the prospect talking
- Find a reason to talk more
- Identify if it makes sense to keep talking
With those three goals in mind, it is clear that the only questions we need to ask when cold calling are pain questions and current state questions.
Creating Your Questions
Unfortunately, we cannot tell you what pain and current state questions to ask because they will be unique for each product and service. But what I can do is provide you with a process to create your own questions when trying to figure out how to ask good questions on a cold call.
For your pain questions, first, create a list of pain points that your product can help to make go away for your prospects. For each pain point, create a question or two that can be asked to see how concerned the prospect is about that particular area.
For your current state questions, here are areas that you can create questions for:
- Currently have what you sell?
- Current vendor/provider
- Current systems and processes
- People in the organization
- Current contracts and expiration dates
- Size details – number of sites, people, systems, etc.
- Current performance/stats (technical, marketing, financial, etc.)
- Last time evaluated other options
How to Respond to Answers to the Questions
How to ask good questions on a cold call is only half of what we need to figure out. The other half is how to respond to the answers that the prospects give to the questions that you ask.
This can be a little more complex because while you might have a short list of questions to ask, there are many different responses that you can get back from prospects. But we help to simplify that by categorizing prospects’ answers into three categories:
- Hot – the prospect has pain or challenges in the area where your product fits
- Neutral – the prospect is doing OK or does not know how things are going
- Cold – the prospect is doing good or great
When you are able to categorize the response into one of those three categories, it is easy to know what direction to take the cold call.
We hope this video helps you to know how to ask good questions on a cold call.