There is one question that often shows up in a cold calling script or naturally comes up when a salesperson is working off of a cold call script, and that is “How are you doing today?” This is one of the worst questions to ask, and here are three reasons why:
1. It makes you sound like a salesperson
When you are cold calling, a prospect is going to answer the phone with their guard at a medium level. Everything that you say or do will make that guardedness either increase or decrease.
One way to avoid triggering more guardedness is to do everything you can to not sound like a salesperson. There are a few different things to do (or not do) in order to not sound like a salesperson and one of them is to not ask a complete stranger how they are doing at the beginning of your cold calling script.
Your instinct will feel that this is a warm way to open a call and foster a relationship. Yes, that is true when you are calling someone you know or someone that you have at least spoken to on one other occasion. But to ask a complete stranger how they are doing has the potential to come off more “salesy” than sincere since there is no existing relationship or connection.
2. They know you really don’t care
And because there is no existing relationship or connection when you are using a cold calling script, the prospect may be aware that you probably don’t really care how they are doing or what their answer to your question is. Their thought may be that you are just asking this question to appear to be nice and to try to manufacture a relationship in order to get their business.
Those thoughts and feelings will have a negative hit on the level of rapport that you have with the prospect. They are thinking, “OK, this is a salesperson trying to be my friend and be nice so that I will purchase from them.”
You are asking how they are doing and are thinking that you are actually building rapport and taking a small step toward getting them to like you. And the reality is that you are actually doing the complete opposite.
3. Begin to waste their time
Your prospect’s time is very limited and valuable. You need to do everything you can to respect it and operate so you don’t waste any of it.
If you begin a cold calling script with a question that they think you are asking to seem likable and the answer they provide does not really matter, do you know what you are doing? You have just begun to waste the prospect’s time.
Not only is that a bad impression to make, but think about when this bad impression is happening – it is taking place in the first few seconds that you talk with them. What a bad way to get off on the wrong foot – I want you to like me and for us to begin to build a relationship, and I am starting to waste your valuable time as I try to do that.
SalesScripter helps sales pros to figure out the best things to say and ask in their cold calling script.