Despite the UK avoiding a recession in 2022, many businesses are still experiencing tough times due to the country’s zero economic growth between October and December. In this context, Sales Talent, a UK sales transformation specialist, is reminding businesses of the value of going back to basics when it comes to selling their goods and services.
In a statement released by the company, Sales Talent’s Managing Director, Paul Owen, highlighted the benefits of traditional sales techniques like cold calling. “Selling over social media can be effective but it can also become very expensive, very fast. That’s far from ideal when budgets are stretched. Thankfully, traditional techniques like picking up the phone still work, particularly in certain sectors. I work with a lot of firms in London’s commercial property market and many of them find that 90% or more of their business comes from cold calling.”
According to the UK edition of the LinkedIn State of Sales Report 2022, 82% of top performing salespeople (those who hit 150% or more of their sales target) always research their prospects before reaching out. This means they can be ready to share details of the value that they offer to each prospect. Cold calling doesn’t mean not being prepared – it’s not a case of randomly picking up the phone and hoping to make a sale.
While studies by LinkedIn and Leap Job have found that 2% or less of cold calls result in an appointment or meeting, Paul Owen of Sales Talent explains that cold calling is about beginning a conversation. “That’s all. It’s about putting your business and your name on the other person’s radar. It’s not about closing a sale but about opening a process. That’s the point.”
Owen acknowledges that many people are nervous about cold calling, but emphasizes that it is a skill that can be learned, just like any other. Nerves are usually due to a lack of confidence or to the salesperson selling in a way that doesn’t fit with their internal moral compass. The key to resolving this is to ensure that all selling processes are built around the concepts of honesty, consistency, and confidence – armed with those, the idea of picking up the phone suddenly becomes far less daunting.
It’s important to note that Sales Talent isn’t advocating for businesses to abandon technology entirely. In fact, research from LinkedIn has shown that top performing salespeople are twice as likely to use sales technology on a daily basis. Sales Talent is simply reminding businesses that traditional sales approaches still have a very valid place in the modern company’s approach.
A shift in mindset can trigger a shift in sales performance, and traditional sales techniques such as cold calling, honesty, consistency, and confidence can help businesses generate sales, particularly during tough economic times. As Sales Talent’s Paul Owen aptly puts it, “Cold calling is about beginning a conversation. That’s all. It’s not about closing a sale but about opening a process. That’s the point.”