The Complete Script for Cold Calling B2B SaaS

February 15, 2018

 

Here’s an unpopular opinion - cold calling isn’t dead. You’re just doing it wrong.

 

In fact, outbound cold calling is incredibly easy to scale once you figure out a repeatable process.

 

During the last 6 years, I’ve been helping companies of all sizes build successful sales teams that revolved completely around cold calling.

 

One team was closing nearly $1 million in net new MRR (monthly recurring revenue) per month from strictly cold calling. And they were only targeting small businesses with $150 per month sized deals.

 

Now, you can start using these best cold calling techniques and book more business.

 

(Note: This approach is ideal for B2B SaaS outbound sales teams focused on SMB and mid-market. This might not be as effective if you’re selling multi-million dollar enterprise deals to Fortune 100 companies.)

 

The process is broken down into 5 simple steps:

1. The Person - speaking to the person that matters

2. The Hook - getting 2 minutes of their time

3. The Pitch - the who, what, and why you’re calling

4. The Questions - qualifying their fit and interest

5. The Close - winning them over and setting next steps

 

You can skip straight to the bottom of this post to see a TL;DR, but I highly recommend reading through the steps in detail.

 

 

1.  THE PERSON

 

First off, the first step in successfully cold calling is making sure you actually speak with the right person - the Decision Maker! Depending on what you’re selling, this can be someone at a C-level (CEO, CTO, CFO) or VP (VP of Sales, VP of Marketing, etc).

 

You can consistently get to the Decision Maker by “flying under the radar” - meaning the Gatekeeper (receptionist, office admin) doesn’t realize you’re cold calling. Gatekeepers responsibility is to screen calls for the more senior people at the company (as their nickname implies). Getting past them is crucial to your success.

 

You can do this effectively in a few ways:

  1. Volunteer as little information as possible (“Hey, this is Mark”)

  2. Sound casual and authentic

  3. Try to only use your point of contact’s first name

  4. Use strong language (“I need to speak with Bill”)

 

Step 1 should look like this:

 

“Hey this is (Your First Name) and I need to speak with (DM’s First

Name)”

 

However, sometimes they’ll block you (“He’s no longer at this company”or “She doesn’t take calls directly”). In this case you’ll want to “rollback” and try a different approach:

 

“Actually, I’m not 100% sure that they’re the right person to speak with...do you think you could point me in the right direction?”

 

By asking for their help, you’re subconsciously making it that much harder for them to reject you. The Gatekeeper will usually respond with “sure”, and you can follow up with:

 

“Thanks. I’m calling from (Company) and I’m usually speaking with someone that handles the technology (or your ideal contact), do you know who that would be in this case?”

 

The “usually speaking” portion is also very important, since it makes it sound casual, and that you’re speaking with them frequently. At this point you should have been connected, or found out the right person to call later.

 

 

2.  THE HOOK

 

During the hook you’re simply asking for their permission to speak with them for 2 minutes. Once you get to the Decision Maker, you can use:

 

“Hey this is (Name) from (Company), did I catch you at an OK time? Thanks, I’ll be really quick.”

 

Try to keep this simple enough for them to digest in a single sentence. They should say “sure” most of the time - if not, you can make a bad joke or complain about it only being Tuesday.

 

Don’t forget to thank them for their time.

 

 

3. THE PITCH

 

The goal for the pitch is to quickly answer who you are, what you do, and why it’s interesting for the prospect.

 

It’s very important that you accomplish this within 1-3 sentences. If you keep rambling, your prospect will stop listening or simply hang up.

 

“So I’m in the (your specialization) division over here at (Company), and we specialize in (problem you’re solving) for (their specific industry).“

 

For example:

“So I’m in the Construction Enablement division over here at Cool Company, and we specialize in real-time cloud based collaboration for Architects”

 

The pitch is also where you can make the most impact with A/B testing. You should constantly experiment with different phrases and see what resonates with your prospects.

 

By tying in a unique problem and their industry, you’re able to paint yourself as a credible expert with a specific use case. This is incredibly important in building credibility, especially on a call that lasts less than 2 minutes!

 

 

4. THE QUESTIONS

 

Now that your prospect knows who you are, why you’re calling, and what’s in it for them - it’s time to get them really intrigued. By using “qualifying question” you can guide prospects down a very specific conversation path.

 

Start off by asking the first question:

 

“So most of the companies that I work with are either using (x solution), (y solution), or (z solution). What about you guys?”

 

The first thing you notice here are the X, Y, and Z solutions. Mentioning specific examples in their workflow you’re painting yourself as an expert in their business.

 

Try to leave these questions open-ended so that the prospect can give you a great answer. Afterwards, you’ll want to further qualify them with one or two more questions, such as:

 

“Ok perfect, and how are you handling (insert another issue they’re running into)?”

 

This really varies the most depending on your business case, but you can usually elaborate on another pain point they mentioned earlier.

 

For example:

 

“Okay perfect, and how are you handling product x? Most of my

clients say that it’s really expensive/buggy/outdated/slow/whatever”

 

 

5. THE CLOSE

 

Finally, the fun part. At this point you should have built some intrigue, pitched your solution, qualified them, and are now ready to schedule a demonstration.

 

If they have answered the qualifying questions properly, and they could benefit from your product, then dive straight into the close like this:

 

“Perfect! I’m glad I caught you then. So all I’m doing now is just setting up some quick 15 minute webinars, showing you why (people in their industry) are loving (your product).


Do you have your calendar open in front of you? I usually schedule these on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which one works better for you?”

 

First, you need to show genuine excitement. You’re making hundreds of sales calls, and you just found someone that could actually benefit from your product! YOU’RE EXCITED AS HELL!

 

Funny enough, this will get them excited, though they might not know why.

 

The last sentence is very important because you’re assuming they’re interested. And why shouldn’t they be? You’re an expert in their industry, and you just qualified them!

 

Instead of asking the prospect IF they’re interested, you’re asking if they prefer option A or B. It’s subtle, but very effective.

 

There’s a decent chance you’ll receive an excuse from them at this point, that you will have to overcome. No matter what they say, you must try to close at least 3 (THREE!) times.

 

Take the first objections/excuse that they give you, effectively counter it, and then suggest Friday at 10:00 AM.

 

If another excuse comes up, counter that, and ask if next week is better. With every objection that you counter, you should push the date back a little (as a compromise).

 

 

BRINGING IT ALL TOGETHER

 

Now, let’s tie everything we learned into a smooth script:

 

The Person:

“Hey this is (Name) and I need to speak with (Decison Maker’s)”

 

*wait patiently and enjoy the hold music*

 

The Hook:

“Hey this is (Name) from (Company), did I catch you at a good time? Thanks, I’ll be really quick.”

 

The Pitch:

“So I’m in the (your specialization) division over here at (Company), and we specialize in (problem you’re solving) for (their specific industry).“

 

The Questions:

“Most of the companies I work with are either using (x solution), (y solution), or (z solution). What about you guys?”

 

*wait and listen to their answer*

 

“Ok perfect, and what about (insert another issue they’re running into)?”

 

The Close:

“Perfect! I’m glad I caught you then. So all I’m doing now is actually just setting up some quick 15 minute webinars, showing you why (people in their industry) are loving (my product).

 

Do you have your calendar open in front of you? I usually schedule these on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which one works better for you?”

 

 

Seem simple? That’s because it is. I’ve helped build countless successful sales teams over the years with this script and some training.

 

Yes, outbound sales can be difficult, especially if you’ve never done it before. But if done right, your business can be set up for tremendous success.

 

Remember that cold calling is always a work in progress, and you should constantly experiment with different hooks, pitches, and questions.

 

If you’d like to learn more about outbound sales, or are interested in my upcoming online sales course for cold calling, then subscribe and join the newsletter!

 

You can also reach me directly on LinkedIn or Twitter.

 

- Mark Fershteyn

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