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by Tim Hughes | @Timothy_Hughes | LinkedIn

The other week I was sitting in a coffee shop drinking my tea, (I’m British after all) and noticed a Cold Calling Guru who talks about Outbound all the time. He was complaining that he had received some outbound. I spat my tea out.

“When will people stop these interruptions” he went onto say. Totally agree. He said “he was too busy to get these rubbish interruptions”. Agree with that too.

Interruption Marketing and Selling started in the 1930s, it is very simple, if you “touch” a person a number of times they will recognise you. The idea is that if you interrupt enough and they will go “wow! I need to buy your product” and you are then “quids in” as we say here in London. Which means they buy something for people not aware of the slang.

Problem is for us sellers is that it doesn’t work like that anymore for us salespeople, there is too much attitude, legislation and technology getting in the way.

What do I mean by attitude. Well, like this “Outbound” guy, none of us like being interrupted. In fact, we know that do do our job well, we need to stop as many of these interruptions as we can. We are all, after all, busy people.

We use technology such as voice mail to divert cold callers. We don’t return voice mails, because very simply we are not interested and have other things to do in our lives. I know if I don’t know the number on my iPhone I don’t answer it and if it’s a cold caller I then block that number using standard iPhone functionality. When it comes to email, my email will pick up most spam email, if unsolicited emails get through then we set up rules, so they will go into the spam box in the future.

Of course, GDPR also has an impact and if you are reading this outside of Europe you have to comply with GDPR because I’m in Europe. This means that if you keep calling me or keep emailing you I have can ask you to comply for my “right to remain forgotten” under GDPR rules. Or of course, you can be fined 4% of global turnover. The days of “Jeb Blount” calling somebody everyday for six months just cannot happen anymore. It’s over!

The Lack of Efficiency of Legacy Sales Methods

Let’s take an example of cold calling 100 people, of those you can probably speak to ten people. It is a highly inefficient way of working. Using Social, you can find the 10 people you want to talk to, there is no need to contact people that are not right for you.

Then if you can talk to those 10 people you have on social in the same time it takes you to call 100 cold calls. The maths are easy. You have contacted 10 times more people with social, than you did with cold calling. The cold calling numbers just don’t stack up.

This makes social selling ten times for efficient than cold calling, even if it’s twice as efficient than cold calling, it’s more efficient. A “win”, after all is a “win”. Being more efficient, is being more efficient.

The Lack of Effectiveness of Legacy Sales Methods

If you think about cold calling there are 4 results you can get:-

  1. Sod off.
  2. You should have called 3 months ago.
  3. Call me in 6 months.
  4. You have called me at the right moment, let’s talk.

The chances that you will get result 4 is not very often, where as social selling will help you with options 2, 3 and 4. And as you are not interrupting people, they probably won’t tell you to “sod off”.

This just shows in ineffective cold calling is when compared to social selling 

And of course, social selling allows you to prospect 24 hours a day. There is no restriction to prime selling time or trying to get round a gatekeeper, there are no gatekeepers on social. One of our clients said to me the other day “I do all my prospecting after I”ve bathed the children and put them to bed”. Frees the day for him for customer meetings. 

It’s hard I know to walk away from these legacy methods but the world has changed.

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