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4 tips for cold-calling confidence

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Few salespeople look forward to making cold calls. Here are some tips which can make cold calling less of a chore.

1.     Remember to breathe. Sometimes, when people get nervous, they forget to breathe. Breathing relaxes and grounds you. Take deep breaths; fill your lungs with air. If you find you have the tendency to hold your breath, do some breathing exercises before you pick up the phone. Close your eyes and breathe in for four counts and out for four counts. Sit with your back straight and breathe into each vertebra of your spine. Also try moving around. Move your shoulders, head and arms and shake out your legs.

2.     What’s your emphasis? The emphasis you place on a particular word can totally change the meaning of a sentence. For example, let’s take the phrase “She is not a thief.” If you were to emphasize the word “she,” the sentence could mean that she is not a thief, but someone else is. If you emphasize “not,” the sentence sounds like a defense against an accusation. If you emphasize “thief,” the sentence might imply that she is something that you have yet not named. Think about the emphasis you wish to make.

3.     Try standing up. While you are calling, try to stay conscious of your breathing. If you find you’re feeling stressed and starting to hold your breath, take a moment to do some breathing exercises and then continue. Sometimes, you can breathe better if you’re standing. And sometimes pacing helps get your energy going and releases nervous tension.

4.     Get into the groove. Everyone has his own personal rhythm and tempo. People generally have a difficult time with people whose rhythms are different from their own. Think about it: If you tend to speak quickly, do you find yourself getting impatient with someone who speaks at a much slower pace? Do you perceive them as dull, perhaps not too bright? On the other hand, if you have a more laidback rhythm to your speech, do you find people who speak quickly annoying? Prospects will grasp your message much more effectively if it’s delivered in a rhythm that matches their own. Remember that your goal is communication, so match your prospects’ timing and tempo.

With a little practice, you can master cold calling. Try these tips to sharpen your cold calling skills. 

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