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Hot for Cold Calls It's a red-hot marketing tool. But how do you get reps to warm up to picking up the phone?

By Kimberly L. McCall

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

What can make an otherwise winning sales pro go wobbly in theknees, croaky in the throat and flustered all over? Cold-calling, asales strategy wherein said salesperson calls another human who maybe cranky. So why cold-call at all? Why not stick to folkswho've at least expressed a scintilla of interest in yourproduct?

Bill Stinnett, a sales trainer and consultant in Wakefield,Massachusetts, says cold-calling makes sense when salespeople areresponsible for uncovering their own leads. Stinnett, president ofSalesExcellence Inc., a business solutions provider, adds thatinstead of selling in a reactive mode, cold-calling allows reps tounearth sales gems. "It's not easy," he says,"but the value is shorter sales cycles, larger deal sizes anda lot less competition."

Lack of competition is one reason Rose Mauriello is a bigproponent of the tactic. "If your competition isn'tcold-calling," the president of RRM StaffingSolutions, a Lexington, Massachusetts, sales consulting andstaffing firm says, "you'll get to uncover a salesopportunity first and limit the potential impact ofcompetitors."

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