Basically there are two kinds of cold calls: in person and on the phone.
If you’re making a cold call on the phone your main goal is to get past a gatekeeper or voicemail.
How to do this?
Try saying: “Hi, my name is Iryna, and I’d like to speak to Mr. Boss. It’s a business matter of a personal nature.”
After you get to Mr. Boss, you give your first name and you ask an engaging question.
If you’re selling a dialer app, you would ask something like, “What are the three most underutilized, yet most profitable methods of using a phone?”
The secret of the cold call is to engage, not to make the sale.
The object of a cold call is to set an appointment.
After Mr. Boss answers your question (or you help them to answer it), you would say, “I have several other important, little known, profitable facts about phones. I’d like to meet with you for a few minutes to talk about how you can take advantage of them.”
It’s getting increasingly hard to make an actual cold call.
If you’re calling a big company you probably won’t get in.
If you’re calling a small company, you can be truthful, “I’d like to speak to the person in charge of computer profitability.”
More elusive might be, “I have an important question about company morale, based on computer operations, and I’d like to speak to the person in charge of morale.”
The key here is that I’ve asked for someone in charge of nothing.
The more you ask for someone, that no one can define, the better chance you have of speaking to a boss, or a decision maker, because the gatekeeper, having no idea what to say, but having direct access to the boss, will buzz him or her.
To sum it up: the secret to cold calling is engagement.
If you’re fortunate enough to get to that decision maker, you better have a damn good question to ask.
If you ask me the biggest secret of cold calling, I would tell you in one word. Preparation.
If you’re no good at it, I can sum it up in two words. Prepare harder.