**Since so many of you asked, these are my results from the first 24 hours after my LinkedIn post.**
Alright, I learned what you probably all knew: Putting your personal cell phone number on LinkedIn along with your sales team size is nutty! But I learned quite a bit.
My initial thought was that I wanted to know how the best of the best SDRs and AE approach a cold contact. What better way to get that information than to actually hear their calls?
Let’s just say I got way more than I bargained for.
An Open Invitation
I receive hundreds of emails each week, many from salespeople who probably could offer great solutions for our sales team. But what can I say? Even good emails have a tendency to get lost and forgotten in the noise. So I posed my invitation to them:
And then I waited for the phone to ring.
My post got some great responses on LinkedIn, with many of the commenters tagging their sales reps, or wanting to hear how things went (hence this post). Strangely enough, a few asked me to email them…? Not sure they quite understood my point 😉
Here are a few of the comments (or you can check out my original post on LinkedIn):
After 24 hours, here are the engagement stats:
- 54,260 views of my post
- 7,202 (13%) of those views were salespeople
- 274 likes
- 45 comments
- 40 additional likes on comments
But as for actual phone calls? The ones I specifically asked for in my post?
I got 60. Out of 7,200 sales people who viewed my post, less than 1% picked up the phone.
There were 25 calls that I was able to answer, and I’m in the process of calling back the 25 people who left voicemails. Only five callers called more than once. Ten callers didn’t bother to leave a voicemail, and I won’t be calling them back.
Of the 25 calls I’ve taken so far, I’ve been really impressed by the reps. I got scheduled for two demos, one rep almost sold me on the phone, and another even showed up at our office to get a meeting.
But what impressed me most was their resistance to “no.” Some got meetings with our director of sales, or were passed on to our VP of marketing because they didn’t take “no” for an answer the first time. The best ones were nice and cordial about it, and then were able to navigate our organization and find a fit elsewhere. I tried to reward their persistence.
I’ve also learned some important lessons. Here are my three big takeaways:
1. Listen to what your customer is asking for.
Although I got quite a few phone calls from sales reps, far more tried to connect with me on LinkedIn or send a message. This is shocking to me, because I specifically asked for a phone call. Needless to say, they won’t be getting a response.
2. All decision makers are busy.
It is almost never a “good” time to talk. I get why reps ask it: that question gives you permission to proceed or allows you to be brief. But most of the time, the response is no. So, if the person on the other end of the phone answered your call instead of sending you to voicemail, you have to make the most of those first 30 seconds. The people that called and said, “I am calling you because…” had the most of my attention.
3. Understand what your customer needs and know why you’re calling.
If you’re going to ask for someone’s time, you need to be able to give them a reason why. For those responding to my post, part of this was obvious: because I asked for it. But that’s not enough.
If you’re calling me, I want to know what’s in it for me. Just because I asked for a call doesn’t mean you don’t need to prepare to sell me. How will this make my life better? How are you going to solve my problems? Since you already know I’m in sales, how will this make me more money? Either create a need, or find one by asking great questions that lead the conversation to where you want to go.
Every call has a purpose, and if that purpose isn’t centered on your prospect, you’re wasting their time.
Put Us to the Test
I’d be a pretty lousy VP of Sales if I didn’t invite you to put our team to the test so they can show you what they’ve got. Get your own personalized demo of Grow and let us know how we do!
I want to go ahead and give a shout out to the companies and reps who had awesome cold calls. I’m sure I missed a few, but these are the ones that stood out from the crowd: