Dissecting the Subtle Trickery of a B2B Prospecting Call
Earlier this week we looked at a call between one of our opportunity analysts (aka cold caller extraordinaire) and a (initially) less than thrilled prospect. If you’ve yet to read that exchange, you can do so here.
Now it’s time to delve into that call in order to understand what makes it a #B2Bprospecting success.
Metrics a.k.a. Fun with Numbers!
Cold, hard numbers hold a deep, abiding love within the modern business world, especially for marketing geeks. They are constantly jonesing for good, usable data. It's understandable - data eliminates a lot of B.S. and allows us to focus on what actually works, not on what we believe should work.
War of the Word Count
480 versus 521: These are the number of words spoken by cold caller Lex and the prospect, respectively. On the surface, they seem pretty even, but of Lex’s 480 words, 306 of those were spoken in the last 3 sentences of the conversation. Why does this matter? It proves that the best path to a successful conversation is when the #prospect does most of the talking, not the other way around.
Moments that Mattered
1. As mentioned above, a good cold call involves fostering an environment in which the prospect feels comfortable doing most of the talking. Most of the time, though, this takes a bit of skillful prodding on the part of the cold caller. Less than a quarter of the way through the call, the prospect blows Lex off – not a complete rejection, but clearly pushing off the conversation to later in the year. Lex acknowledges the prospects wishes and seems to agree, yet with casual subtlety, keeps her talking. If Lex would have simply accepted immediate rejection, the length of the call would have been 261 words, as opposed to 1001.
2. Multiple times the prospect mentions pushing the conversation off until November. Lex acknowledges this at every turn yet keeps her talking. Never does Lex come off as aggressive or rude, nor does the prospect seem annoyed.
3. Near the end of the conversation comes the “A-ha!” moment – the prospect becomes intrigued with one of the services Lex is offering. Without the previous two “moments that mattered”, this would have never occurred. It is this “A-ha!” moment that allows Lex to take control of the conversation and do more of the talking, because she now knows what interests the prospect.
While the call did not immediately lead to a meeting, it is successful, nonetheless. Our #coldcalling extraordinaire did everything she was supposed to do in qualifying the prospect. Most importantly, a meeting did eventually take place…three months earlier than the prospect’s original request!