How do you make cold calls when you have social anxiety? Cold call anxiety is the fear that a salesperson experiences before and during a call to a customer who has never spoken to it. Studies have shown that 40% of salespeople feel extremely anxious about receiving a call at some stage in their careers.
How to make a cold call
For those with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), many aspects of becoming a salesperson can trigger anxiety-and making phone calls can be one of the most difficult problems. The combination of negative self-evaluation and potential negative reactions from customers can cause anxiety. Here are some tips to help you deal with this aspect of sales.
Have an outline
Although you may want to read directly from the script, it is best to have an outline for reference. Reading the script will get you out of what you are saying and let your mind wander around.
The person on the other end can usually tell if you are reading the script, but you might find it untrue.
Do your research
Before picking up the phone, make sure you know the name of the person and company you are calling, and the pronunciation of both. Research the needs of potential customers and how to meet them. Before you call, you have to know what your goals are. This will make it easier for you to guide the conversation.
If you are usually anxious about the phone, try to act as if you are not afraid. Sit upright while speaking, with a smile on your face, and speak as confidently as possible.
As long as you take the time to prepare, there is no reason why you can’t “pretend to be true.” Ultimately, your confidence will grow with experience.
Practice what you want to say, record your own words, listen to the recording, and then make changes based on what you hear. If you think you are not objective enough, please ask someone you trust to give you feedback.
Doing this exercise will help you identify aspects of your communication style that may need to be adjusted, such as your speaking speed or your volume.
Take notes during the conversation as much as possible. This will help you avoid falling into negative thinking patterns and focus on what the other person is saying. It will also provide you with a written record for your reference in future conversations.
Cold call research
In a study conducted by the Keller Center at Baylor University, 50 real estate agents from across the United States made 6,264 phone calls. Of these calls, 72% were unanswered or had the wrong number. In 28% of the calls received, on average only 1 in 59 people agreed to make an appointment with an agent. Finally, the best time to call is between 10 am and 2 pm.
What do these findings mean to you?
- Two-thirds of calls are likely to be unanswered, so treat those “dead” calls as opportunities to breathe between conversations with potential customers or customers.
- If you receive a lot of “nos” in a row, please remember that this is normal and expected. You will need to make a lot of phone calls to find interested customers-this is the nature of the phone, not a reflection of your sales ability. To get some inspiration, watch the movie “In Pursuit of Happiness” with Will Smith and see how much effort he puts in the call of indifference.
- If you can choose a time, please call sometime between the morning and the afternoon. Although it is not clear why now is the best time to call, it is likely that you have not caught up with people in a hurry in the morning or in the afternoon.
Alternatives to cold calling
If cold calls don’t seem to work for you, see if you can suggest a better way to your supervisor. Many organizations are moving away from telephone consultations because they are not as effective as following up with existing customers and interested potential customers.
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Finally, if your social anxiety is severe enough to affect your work performance and you have not yet been assessed for social anxiety disorder, it may be time to seek professional advice. SAD is a treatable disease, and the fear of tasks such as phone calls can be overcome through treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).