7 Alternatives To Cold Calling That Actually Work

  • James Notaris

    CPA, ESQ, Legal Editor

  • Tyler Dikun

    Digital Marketer

    In Brief:

  • Cold calling has been proven to be only 10% effective according to a recent study by Harvard University.

  • The main issue with cold calling is that it is often impossible to establish trust with the prospect.

  • Fortunately, there are several alternatives to cold calling that are far more effective. Learn more below.

Cold Calling is a skill that few possess. The ability to convince a complete stranger into a desired action takes the proper amount of finesse – push too hard and your potential customer will hang up, don’t push enough he/she will need to “think about it”. Although cold calling used to be one of the only means of generating sales, times have certainly changed. Salespeople and marketers can now reach their desired audience through a myriad of platforms that don’t involve the dreaded the phone call. Let’s break down the art of the phone call and why these ten alternatives are much more effective.

Cold Calling Explained:

The “cold call” is an often used term in sales that involves calling a prospect that you have had no connection with yet. At this point of contact, you are a complete stranger to the potential client. Because we are taught as children to avoid strangers, your potential customer may be very suspicious and rather unpleasant or cold.

Cold calling has also come under scrutiny in the last few years due to the emergence of the spam call. Corporations have utilized live callers and automated callers in recent years to endlessly call potential customers in an attempt to get them to buy a product or sign up for their service. In newly released data from T-Mobile, over 200 million Americans are currently on the national do not call list. Surely there must some other way to reach potential customers!

  1. Ask Satisfied Customers To Refer You

The number one reason cold-calling is so ineffective – 90% ineffective according to a study by Harvard University – is that the person on the other line doesn’t trust you. You may have a solid business plan and genuinely wish to improve the lives of your customer base, but trust is key to making sales. The best way to circumvent the issue of trust is by having satisfied customers refer you. You may wish to include customer reviews under your products or feature testimonials for the services you provide. 

  1. Create a Dynamite Sales Email

Emails have been shown to be much more effective than phone calls. The proper email can tactfully provide all the information your prospect needs to make an informed decision. Furthermore, an email is a permanent form of communication, so you don’t have to worry about your prospect forgetting key information. Sales emails should feature a subject line that captures attention, elaborate on all the helpful facets of your business, and end on an open invitation to discuss further. By providing a call-to-action, your prospect may be the one calling you.

  1. Answer Questions on Reputable Forums

Engaging on forums like Reddit and Quora is an excellent way to boost your brand awareness. By answering questions and fostering debate, you can get potential prospects to become interested in your brand and begin to view it as a helpful source of information. Yet, it’s important not to oversell on forums. Make sure not to shill your brand at every attempt or prospects may begin to feel like their being sold to. The key is to remain helpful and positive without pressuring your prospects into using your site. If your posts are informative and creative, you should have no problem boosting traffic and making sales.

  1. Re Engage Past Customers 

One of the best alternatives to cold calling is to try your hand at former customers. These customers successfully converted on your site in the past, so it may be worth a shot to try them again. Repeat customers are often those who were satisfied with the quality of product or service provided and may become trusted, long time customers. It’s vital to retain contact info of customers who converted on your site in order to keep them informed on the latest products and services your business offers. Just because a prospect has navigated through the entire sales funnel doesn’t mean you should be done with quite yet.

  1. Maintain a Strong Social Media Presence

Social media is often the best way to convert prospects into paying customers. Businesses with a strong social media following typically lead the field when it comes to site visitors and successful conversions. It’s important to regularly post interesting content that is also pleasing to the eye. Businesses that retweet their customers, comment, and like demonstrate that they care about their followers. You can post an expertly produced video, ask a question, release a survey, or just say something funny in an attempt to boost brand awareness. Social media is everything in 2021, a page with little to no followers, stale content, and no follower-engagement can be extremely detrimental to your business efforts.

  1. Maintain an Informative and Interesting Blog

Blogging is an excellent way to boost your organic traffic and provide informative/interesting content. Blogs should include topics that relate to your business. These topics can answer frequently asked questions, provide opinions, the list goes on. Your prospects may become frequent readers of your content and decide that your business is both reputable and at the forefront of your industry. Make sure to use best SEO practices including using high traffic/low difficulty keywords, hitting a 1-2% keyword density, and optimizing your metatags. You can share your SEO optimized articles on your social media feed as well.

  1. Offer a Free Consultation

Prospects may be interested in your product or service, but that doesn’t mean their ready to pull the trigger just yet. By offering a free consultation, you can quell any fears, answer questions, and sell your brand. Unlike cold calling, consultations are scheduled by the prospect meaning that they actually want to talk with you. There are many ways to conduct a consultation that don’t require talking on the telephone as well. You can conduct a video-conference call, so that your prospect can put an image to your voice, or use a chat feature to instantaneously answer any questions that may arise.

Ditch Cold Calling and Boost Your Sales

Cold calling is a relic from decades past. It is near impossible to convince a complete stranger that your business is worth sinking their hard-earned money into. The fact of the matter is that prospects increasingly want to have a personalized buyers journey. Ditch the old days of cold calling for creative content, engaging social media channels, and much more. Sales don’t make themselves.


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