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The official blog of AG Salesworks, Sales Prospecting Perspectives will give readers an insight to the challenges of managing a targeted outbound Sales Prospecting effort and team.

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Why You Absolutely MUST Cold Call At The End Of The Year.

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September and October are our biggest months for sales. They always have and I suspect they always will be. The sales cycle for these deals start in the middle of Q3 and they progress quickly as VP’s and CEO’s leverage our services to get as much business in for the year as possible. Come November attitudes change. The same management teams that were scrambling because they didn’t have enough forecast in 2010 decide that it is a good idea to hold off on teleprospecting from about Thanksgiving until after the New Year. They fear that that their target audience won’t be in the office, won’t be engaged if they are in the office and won’t make an effort to learn about your solution. The common attitude is “Why waste the money calling into a non receptive audience when we can start it in January?”  Our experience has shown just the opposite to be true, that putting in the effort at the end of the year sets the table for next year. Your audience is much more receptive than you think.

You should teleprospect at the end of the year because your prospect has the time to talk. Yes, there are a lot of people out of the office in the time between Thanksgiving and New Years. That being said, not everyone is out and those that are in likely have a lot more time than usual to talk to you, see demo’s, and review action plans. Free time goes away quickly come the beginning of the year as new initiatives have been set and your prospects have their plates full with tasks handed to them from co workers and superiors.

Your competition’s lack of action should motivate you to call during the end of the year. If they aren’t making cold calls, you should be all over the phones so that you can be the first one in the door to make introductions to new prospects. The end of the year is a great time to establish rapport with prospects so that come January when budget is released and evaluations begin, you are already known and you have a leg up on the people that are scrambling to get an appointment with your contact. You set the tone for the RFP that will go out. You let the prospect know what they should be looking for. You become a trusted advisor while others are selling snake oil.

You know who calls your prospects in January? Everyone. Remember that your industry probably isn’t the only one trying to sell to this person. There are thousands of other companies with products that don’t compete with yours but the person that buys their product also buys yours so while you are not competing with them for the same line item, you are absolutely competing with them for something just as precious…..face time. Anyone with a perceived buying title is burdened by the astronomical amount of calls they receive every day. This is heightened at the beginning of the year as every sales person with a phone begins to prospect, prompting your prospect to turn on the “Do Not Disturb” button and ignore almost everyone. It’s a shame when you don’t get that half hour that you need to pitch your network security solution because your prospect gave that time slot to guy that sells promotional pens. (Look it writes upside down!!!)

Truth be told, if you want to have a constant and predictable amount of pipeline coming in you should be running teleprospecting campaigns all year round. You can always find a reason to not cold call, but I bet your reason to not cold call isn’t as good as the reasons why you should.


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