If you work in sports, there’s a good chance you started in sales. If you started in sales, there’s a good chance you’ve made your fair share of cold calls. I’ve had and seen cold call quotas anywhere from 40-150 per day. I’ve often times wondered, is it better to make as many phone calls in a day as physically possible, or take the time to research and have quality conversations with each contact made? (resulting in less overall touch-points)
As you could have guessed, there really is no clear cut answer for this question. The product being sold can obviously help determine the most successful strategy. For the purpose of the article, lets assume it’s sports sales, specifically group ticket sales.
Most of the time, new sales reps are brought in straight from college to help teams sell group tickets and increase attendance. The keyword here is sell, and we’re talking new business. Which can only mean one thing, pounding the phones. Without much other responsibility throughout the day, this leaves them with plenty of time to spend on the phone, trying to push ticket sales.
A few days ago on Linkedin, I noticed a post from a sales manager bragging about a team member who made 270 phone calls in a seven hour work day. Lets break this down:
270 / 7 = 38.5 calls per hour
This means a phone call was being made less then every two minutes – this includes the time it takes to log info into a CRM, take notes, etc. This statistic prompted me to think – How can a phone call that lasts less than two minutes be a high quality relationship building strategy? Now I’m sure some of them were voicemails and requests to speak at another time, but still.
While it seems like we won’t get a clear cut answer to our questions, I’ll end with this; When a new sales rep enters the scene with no prospects or other major responsibilities, playing the phone call number game might be the way go. But as an employee becomes more and more successful, they obtain other job functions including fulfilling and building up current relationships, all things that can cut down on cold call time.
New sales reps don’t need to be taught to sell, they need to be taught how to listen, interact, and build relationships. These are the keys to a long and successful future in the sales world.
The age of going through a phone book and calling every business without any background information is dead. We live in an era with unlimited access to information via the internet and all social media platforms. There is no excuse for making a sales call without prior knowledge such as contact person, size of company, and company mission statement. Doing all of these things before a sales call is sure to cut down on calls per day, but WILL statistically increase your chance of sales per call. Isn’t that what sports are about anyway? Not just playing the numbers game, but winning it?