9 Inside Sales Techniques to Get Over Your Fear of Cold Calling

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It’s astonishing how intimidating it can be to pick up a phone and start dialing numbers, but it happens to many people. Business owners often feel the effects of cold call reluctance in high costs and high turnover rates of salespeople. Sales representatives averse to cold calling are often stressed and frustrated as they’re struggling to hit their quotas while dealing with a very real fear. In this article, we’ll review a few causes of cold call reluctance and nine inside sales techniques to help your salespeople get over their anxieties.

Causes of Cold Call Reluctance

Cold Call ReluctanceThe distaste for cold calling can stem from being unprepared and/or inexperienced. Simply providing a script to your callers isn’t enough. They should frequently be practicing their pitch to boost their confidence.

Company culture can also cause cold call reluctance. Many businesses shame salespeople with the notion that they’re akin to sleazy car salesmen. This is not the idea you want the rest of your organization to have about sales. Portray the sales team in a positive light to make them feel good about what they’re doing. You can do this by highlighting those who reach their goals and praising them publicly on big sales.

Introverts often have a difficult time with telemarketing. It can be terrifying but preparing and knowing all the details of your products will boost their confidence and take some of the edge off. As Howard Walstein says, “By stepping out of your box, you don’t have to settle for what you are – you get to create who you want to become.” Anyone can sell over the phone, even introverts.

Inside Sales Techniques to Overcome Cold Call Averseness

The first step in tackling hesitancy to cold calling is admitting there’s an issue. It’s fatal for sales careers and is something that must be remedied if the individual wants to succeed. Here’s a list of nine inside sales techniques your salespeople can do to overcome their fears of cold calling.

  1. Display positive affirmations and smile. Negative emotions like fear can be paralyzing. But the effects of positive thoughts on productivity is immense. It can boost self-esteem and even reduce stress. Tell your employees to read through some positive quotes, print out their favorites, put a smile on and pick up the phone. This article from The Wall Street Journal touts how forcing a smile can make you happier and even slow down your heart rate.
  1. Use aromatherapy to bring on positive thinking. The Mayo Clinic has reported on the health benefits of aromatherapy. We know our sense of smell can trigger memories, so use it to your advantage. To move beyond fear try taking a sniff of an essential oil. Vanilla essential oil has antidepressant qualities and is a good one if you enjoy sweets. Peppermint is good to sharpen your mind, or maybe if you want to think of winter holidays. Lavender oil is another good one for concentration and fighting anxiety. Breath in some jasmine oil to increase alertness and uplift your mood. 
  1. inside sales goalsWrite a list of why making the sales call is necessary. Getting it down on paper is powerful. Yes, your inside sales reps likely know the basic reasons of why they need to make calls, but have them look deeper. What is it that they want? Maybe to save for a new car, get noticed for exceeding their quota, or go on a dream vacation. Having a list of their “whys” will give them a boost whenever they’re procrastinating making calls. 
  1. Set an objective to deliver value. Your salespeople need to adopt a helping mindset and ask questions to find out how the product they’re selling can solve a problem or fill a void. Being helpful also means knowing when a prospect is not a good fit and stopping trying to make the sale.
  1. Reward yourself for hitting personal goals. Have your employees create milestone goals to bring them through the month. These can even be daily call counts. Rewards don’t have to be anything big either, a piece of chocolate, a walk around the building, just something they want.
  1. Observe your perceptions of cold calling. Encourage your sales reps to ask themselves what personal opinions they have around cold calling? It’s not helpful as a caller to think that you know how your prospect will respond to your call. All that does is put a negative taste in your mouth before even saying “hello.” Instead of expecting the worst, they should train themselves to expect the best case scenario.
  1. Provide time for continuing education outside of the initial training. Regular coaching and guidance are very helpful for inside sales reps. With products like VanillaSoft, you can review call recordings and spot any needs for improvement. Also, as updates or new products are released at your company, even experienced salespeople need to be informed of the features.
  1. Simplify the process for inside sales by investing in lead management software. Technology takes out a lot of the work and increases productivity. For example, VanillaSoft’s auto dialing feature queues the next call for your sales reps, thereby avoiding procrastination. Logical branch scripting will make them feel comfortable knowing that they have a roadmap for the call with exactly what to say.
  1. Take a deep breath and dial. There’s nothing like taking action and doing whatever you’re afraid of to get over something. Callers will build courage as they get through the first few dials of the day. However, the fear may come back every morning, you just have to keep dialing.

 Even the most experienced salespeople can feel cold call reluctance. Know how to spot it in your employees so you can help them get over it as quickly as possible.

What inside sales techniques have you utilized to help your reps get over their reluctance to make cold calls? Let us know in the comments below!

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Genie Parker

Genie brings more than 30 years of experience in sales and marketing with an emphasis on doing business on the phone. Genie comes with a broad experience reaching into hundreds of industries including technology, manufacturing, non-profits, financial services, and business services. Prior to joining VanillaSoft, Genie Parker co-founded Parker, Murray and Associates, a remarkably successful boutique outbound call center. Genie's company consistently delivered sales, qualified leads, appointments, marketing and fund-raising services to businesses from The Fortune 500 to small businesses across the United States for 15 years.

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