Ever found yourself making a cold call? If you have, then you sure know what an opener is and how hard it can be make one and deliver it the right way.
Simply defined, cold calls are attempts to contact decision-makers in their own turf in order to introduce the product or service that your company provides. Many people despise cold calls because they see it as sales call -- people making cold calls will not stop until they get a sale.
In reality, this is not the case. Cold calls are only about introducing your product or service to the decision-maker in the hopes of getting him or her interested enough to grant you a second meeting. This is why openers are really important. Openers are brief and succinct statements that introduce you and the company you work for. A good opener will get you in that decision-maker's appointment book.
So how should an opener be written? Writing a good opener takes only three steps:
- State your name.
- Identify who you are and what you do.
- Tell what benefits would the decision-maker and his company get from using your company's products or services.
It is very important that you deliver an opener in a confident and firm manner. This will show the decision-maker that you believe in your products and services. It also shows that you believe yourself capable of delivering whatever guarantees you gave.
Now for a little exercise, tell me which one of the openers presented below will get you a second meeting with a decision maker.
Example 1: My name is John Smith and I am with WorkSmartr. We provide virtual assistance services that will drive your administrative and operating expenses down by at least 40%. Guaranteed.
Example 2: My name is John Smith and I am with WorkSmartr. We work hard so you can work smart.
If you choose the first example then you are correct. With decision-makers, it always comes down to the bottom line. You had the decision-maker's attention when you said that you can drive their expenses down. Such an opener will guarantee that you can make a longer presentation of your products and services at a later date.
Of course, be prepared to answer questions if he as any, but remember to you’re your answers brief and concise. Avoid getting carried away. If you so desire, you can even tell him that you will answer his questions in detail in your next meeting.
So what do you when the decision-maker grants you another meeting? Resist the urge to make a sales presentation right there and then. You politely thank him or her for his time and leave some literature that he can look at when you are gone. Do not forget to leave your business card. Tell the decision-maker that you are aware of his or her busy schedule and that you would like to continue your presentation at another time of his convenience.