6 Best Practices to Follow When Automating Cold Calls


Kayla Matthews, shares six tips that marketers need to ensure the human element doesn’t get lost in the shuffle as marketers engage in cold call automation.

Cold calling is a science that requires equal parts charisma, streamlining technologies and a good amount of patience.

Automating this process can be a great way to improve the number of calls you attempt each day, but it means you have to work a little harder to respect the time and privacy of your leads while still offering them something of value.

As you engage in cold call automation of your own, keep these six tips in mind to ensure the human element doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.

Also Read: Revive Sales Leads Gone Cold With These TipsOpens a new window

1. Prioritize Your Calls by Automating Lead Scoring

Before you or your auto-dialer attempts contact with somebody on your cold call list, there are some tools at your disposal to help you prioritize which individuals you want to reach out to first.

Done properly, this won’t be as “cold” a cold call as you’re used to making. For instance, your CRM might engage in lead scoring based on who has submitted a contact form, the degree to which a lead has interacted with your brand online (including social media), and whether they’ve added items to their carts or made repeated visits to your web properties.

By the time you reach out to them with a “cold” call, it might be the first time they’re engaging directly with a representative from your company. But scoring your leads in advance means you’ve already piqued and then gauged their interestOpens a new window and that you won’t entirely be strangers when contact is made.

2. Choose Between a Power Dialer and a Predictive Dialer

It’s important to know the difference between these two types of cold call automation software, then to choose wisely about which one is right for your business. So how are they different? Here are the main differences:

  • Predictive Dialers: Predictive dialers can be used to make calls on several phone lines at the same time, by live agents using medium-sized to large phone lists. Agents are alerted when a call is picked up on one of the lines, and are not slowed down by disconnected calls, answering machines, disconnected calls or dial tones.
  • Power Dialers: Power dialers are different in that they make calls to one phone number after the other, on a single line. When a human being answers on the other end of the line, there is no delay — your agent can respond right away.

There are some consumer protection regulations in place when it comes to using predictive dialers. For instance, companies may not drop more than 3 percent of the calls they attempt. That means you need a large enough team in place that you can answer 97 percent of calls that connectOpens a new window . If all of your agents are occupied at one time, your prospect will hang up and probably block or even report your number.

3. Don’t Neglect Voicemail

Voicemail can be a useful tool, despite the number of companies and agents not presently taking advantage of it. Every telephone owner receives their share of unsolicited calls, but it seems in most cases that’s as far as things go. A missed call, an unknown number and no voicemail with information about what the call was even about. It leaves the recipient feeling frustrated and maybe even vulnerable, with nothing to show for the intrusion.

Consider how employing a “voicemail drop” application might benefit you. Instead of leaving unhelpful missed call notifications on people’s home screens, if a call doesn’t go through, you can choose from pre-recorded voice messages and simply “drop” that message into your prospect’s voicemail mailbox.

Using a tool like this doesn’t guarantee a callback, but it does have the potential to offer value and an enticement for the recipient of your call to get back in touch.

4. Automatically Record or Transcribe — And Then Analyze — Your Calls

For people who earn their livelihood on the phone, learning to speak effectively with others can feel like a lifelong endeavor. So, it might make sense to look for call management software, or a separate app, that lets you record or transcribe your phone calls as you make them.

What’s the advantage of this? For one, it lets you look back over your most successful calls to see what went well and which techniques and talking points you can deploy again in the future. You’ll also be able to refer back to the transcript to collect any details you may have missed.

The advantage for the recipients of your calls is clear: they get to deal with a telephone agent who is committed to improving their personability, their knowledge of their product and their ability to walk the fine line between pushing forward to a successful sale while still maintaining a respectful and coolly helpful “distance.”

5. Choose the Right Channels to Follow Up With and Nurture Your Leads

Following up a cold call with another form of contact could be the ingredient your marketing team has been missing out on. But what’s the best way to do this? Through a lot of trial and error, we know calling and emailing is often the most successful combination of outreach types. Here’s what we know:

Even social media provides a way to nurture your leads and provide additional value and insights, even after your cold call has concluded.

6. Give Away Something of Value

No matter how artfully you do it or how robust the CRM you use to get it done, cold calling is still cold calling. When your power dialer finally gets that intrigued “Hello?” on the other end of the line, your agents need something of value to offer. Your leads will want to know their time isn’t being taken for granted, and that means offering something of value for free.

It’s the same tenet that drives content marketing on the internet — if you’re asking somebody to do something, like sign up for your email list or follow through on a sale on your website, sometimes they need a gentle push. That push can come in the form of quality content like a professionally produced video, a whitepaper with compelling research and case studies, a sample or demo of your product and service or something else of your own design.

Providing something helpful for your leads, whether in the B2B or B2C community, helps build rapport and begins a dialogue. It’s a “way in” to talking about the benefits of your product, but it also communicates how well you value your leads’ time and how well you understand their needs or — as applicable — their business model.

Also Read: CRO for B2B – 5 Tricks for Best Business ImpactOpens a new window

A Human Touch

Most of these tips require that you know something about your leads before you reach out. Knowing how to engage with them in a humanistic way is the most important thing you can keep in mind about cold calling.

In your own mind, make it about your leads, and solving their problems, and how much they value their time. Everything else will follow from there, including choosing the right technology to help you along.