Example 1: “I have time free on Friday, July 6th at 2:00 pm. I’ll reach out to you then to discuss. I hope you’re able to take my call.”
With this closing statement, you’re:
- Showing that you are not asking anything from them.
- Carrying the labor of the continued conversation.
- Passively trying to connect, not aggressively.
Example 2: “I’ll reach out to Mary to see if you have some free time next week to discuss this.”
By suggesting that you’ll reach out to their executive assistant, you’re:
- Showing that you’ve done your homework.
- Following the correct protocol for the continued conversation.
- Not asking anything from them and their busy schedule.
Example 3: “I have time free on Friday, July 6th at 2:00 pm. Are you free at that time to talk?”
By closing this way, you’re:
- Still asking them to do something, although it’s minimal. They just need to check one date/time in their calendar.
- Giving them enough time (at least a week out) to ensure that they’ll have a spot on their calendar.
- Sometimes I’ll offer two times a week out for them to choose from and then say, “Which date/time works best?”
- By taking this approach, I’m applying a successful passive/aggressive strategy. I’m able to send three to five emails and make three calls without annoying the prospect…which isn’t easy.
Here are a few suggestions to increase your email cold calling success rate using this approach:
- If I don’t reach them, I leave a voice mail and send an email stating, “I guess this didn’t turn out to be a good time. Let’s try again for Wednesday at 3 p.m.”
- On the morning of my proposed meeting I’ll send an email stating, “As per my message, I’ll be calling you today at… I hope that we’re able to connect. Please let me know if that time doesn’t work.”
- I’ll continue this for three-times per prospect, then back away. After the third attempt, I usually say, “I guess this time frame is way too busy for us to connect. I’ll try again in the future. In the meantime, feel free to contact me…”
- I then move on to someone else in the company after the three times.
- I try to splice the attempts with value. Before the scheduled call attempt, I may forward them an article stating, “This company looks like they are going through the same thing as you…check out their approach.” Or on a VM, stating, “By the way, B2B magazine has a whole section this month of the financial services vertical and I know that’s a big focus for you guys.”
I love the simple elegance of Daniel’s approach. The moment I read/heard it from a customer’s perspective, I knew it was much more effective.
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Jill Konrath is the author of SNAP Selling and Selling to Big Companies. If you’re struggling to set up meetings, click here to get a free Prospecting Tool Kit.