There are actually some clear differences between what is cold calling and what is more warm calling.
Three Characteristics of Cold Calling
There are three key factors that determine whether or not your sales call is a cold call. Those are outlined below and really all three need to be met for the call to be labeled as cold.
1. The prospect does not know who you are.
The prospect you are calling does not know who you are in terms of personally knowing you. They will likely not recognize your name and will not be sure who you are and why you are calling them.
The prospect may know of your company and what your company does. But they will not have any existing knowledge or relationship with you. If they know who you are and if you have spoken before, your call is more of a warm call than cold calling.
2. The prospect is not currently doing business with you.
A key factor in determining what is cold calling is whether or not the prospect is currently doing business with you. If there is an existing relationship between your company and theirs, a prospecting call to them is more of a warm call than cold call.
3. The prospect is not expecting your call.
Is the prospect expecting your call? If so, it is more of a warm call than cold call. A cold call is one where you call the prospect without being on their calendar and without their knowledge that you plan to reach out to them.
When is it a warm call?
If only one of these factors is not met, then your call is more of a warm call than cold call. The key benefit to knowing the difference in what is cold calling from warm calling is that cold calling is a lot more difficult. In order to perform well while cold calling, you need to go through some preparation as the calling can be more hostile and go in more unexpected directions.
In some ways, you can perform warm calling with less preparation as you are operating in less choppy waters because you do not have to deal with some of the factors previously outlined. Either the prospect knows you, either you are already doing business today, or the prospect is expecting your call.
The Difficult of Cold Calling
Any of those make your call much easier and without any of those, you better be prepared with what you are going to say and ask as you will need to operate in a tighter window in terms of time. You are also likely to face more objections. A script can help you to be more successful with both of those challenges.
SalesScripter provides tools to help sales pros identify what is cold calling.