The Psychology of the Perfect Cold call

On this episode of the Salesman Podcast, Chris Beall explains the exact process to start a successful cold call and the mindset you need to be in to make it stick.

Chris has led software start-ups as a founder or early-stage developer for the last 30 years. He is currently CEO of ConnectAndSell, and hosts a podcast which you can find at  MarketDominanceGuys.com.

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Featured on this episode:

Host - Will Barron
Founder of Salesman.org
Guest - Chris Beall
CEO of Connect And Sell

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Transcript

Will Barron:

Hi, my name is Will, and welcome to today’s episode of the Salesman Podcast. On today’s show, we’re looking at the psychology of the perfect cold call with our guest Chris Beall. Chris has led software startups as a founder or early stage developer for the last 30 years. He’s currently the CEO of ConnectAndSell and host a podcast, which you can find over at marketdominanceguys.com with that, Chris, welcome to the show.

 

Chris Beall:

Hey Will, great to be here.

 

Cold Calling is Alive Again · [00:30] 

 

Will Barron:

I’m glad to have you on mate. So this is a, I think I’m going totally sidetracked from what I was going to talk about. We’ll go down a different avenue for 30 seconds and then we’ll get it back onto the psychology of the cold call, but it seems like it was in fashion two or three years ago, whether it’s on social media, whether it’s sales training, whatever it is to start to say, cold calling is nonsense, cold calling no longer works. People don’t want to be cold called and obviously cold calling is effective when used in the right way, which we’ll talk about in this show, but have you found that these conversations and these premises and these debates of whether cold calling is effective or not, it’s kind of died down over the last 12 months. I really feel like that narrative has almost disappeared.

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah, I think it has. Email is the thing that’s gotten hammered over the last 12 months because COVID came along and I think the rational response to it was, well, let’s send a million emails and the problem is a million emails create a lot of noise. And I think that’s really what has driven a resurgence of interest in having conversations.

 

Most Salespeople Don’t Cold Call Because They Like Hiding Behind Emails · [01:34] 

 

Will Barron:

I agree. I agree. I feel like it’s almost, well, it’s not almost, it’s definitely easier to spam crappy emails and hide behind your inbox than it is to do the hard work of using ConnectAndSell to make the [inaudible 00:01:47] easier I guess. But the actual calls itself is somewhat labour intensive. If you’re doing it correctly, I think it’s fair to say is brain intensive. You having to think, you’re having to engage your conversational skills, you’re having to do a little bit of work there as well. So I think it’s people have leveraged some of these automated tools to hide behind email, whereas you can’t really hide behind a cold call. Can you?

 

“Gresham’s law of business communications says that bad money drives out good money. So counterfeit money drives good money out of circulation because people hide the good money. And I think noisy communication, cheap communication like email, the bad ones, the spammy ones, drive the good ones out of circulation. And so you have to switch to a different currency.” – Chris Beal · [02:17] 

 

Chris Beall:

No, you can’t. It’s kind of interesting, I call it Gresham’s law of business communications, Gresham’s law, most people probably don’t know it. Hopefully they don’t, but it says bad money drives out good. So counterfeit money drives good money out of circulation because people hide the good money. And I think noisy communication, cheap communication like email, the bad ones, the spammy ones, drive the good ones out of circulation. And so you have to switch to a different currency. And so I think that’s, it’s not so much hard work with ConnectAndSells an example, it’s easy. You push a button and talk to somebody. How hard is that? But it’s hard to bring yourself to push the button and that’s rational because you’re at that moment agreeing with yourself that you’re going to ambush somebody and they’re not going to like it.

 

Chris Beall:

So now what? I think that’s actually the hump we have to get over. Our fears peak around the fear of exile and in the environment of evolution in the village, exile was the worst. Exile was worse than death, always it has been in human society forever. And when we decide to ambush somebody and frighten them, annoy them, do something bad to them, we are actually risking something worse than death inside of our bodies. We feel it. And we don’t want to push that button so that’s the hard work. And then getting skilled at it is in a way, once you get over the first part, you can agree with yourself that you’re going to develop the skills, but then the brain work is way inside your brain. The cortical stuff, where you’re thinking, not worth very much in a cold call. There’s not a lot of thinking to be done.

 

Chris Beall:

I remember listening to Cherryl Turner who works at ConnectAndSell, she’s perhaps the greatest cold caller in the world. Certainly the best I’ve ever heard. And when Helen and I, my fiance and I, were listening to her, as I mentioned in the pre-show, we’re kind of nerdy, we do nerdy things. So we were just listening to a bunch of Cherryl conversations, because Helen is a big strategic seller. So she doesn’t do any cold calling. And she said, “You know what’s interesting? Is there are millisecond level emotional pivots that Cherryl uses in her cold calls even though the words stay the same.” That’s the hard work.

 

People Don’t Like Being Cold Called So Don’t Waste Their Time · [04:35] 

 

Will Barron:

So I want to get into, we’ll dive back into that. I made a note down here to come back to that later in the show Chris because I guess that’s more advanced level stuff. Let’s start from the foundational side of this and build our way back up to that. And you mentioned, and I don’t know if you did this very specifically or if it was more kind of in passing, but you used specifically the word ambush and you were quite heavy handed in the way you were describing what happens most, not all the time, but most of the time when we make a dial to someone. Do you purposefully think about and almost teach and describe cold calling in that matter, in that way that you are ambushing someone to make it real for people when they are picking up the phone? Is there a reason why you use those words specifically?

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah, there is. So first of all, when you dial, nothing happens most of the time, you end up up in their voicemail, which is, so what? Anybody can leave a voicemail, but when you get somebody and they answer, you’ve ambushed them, they made a mistake. They were not intending to speak with you. I mean, think about it, otherwise you wouldn’t be cold calling them. It’s just kind of simple math. So I use the word ambush to make it clear that the psychological beginning of the cold call for the other party is that they don’t like it. And here’s the point. It’s not that, I’m not saying, hey, this is a big deal, steal yourself for it. What I’m really saying is, and we get into this in the psychology of the cold call. What I’m saying is that is a great place to start because it’s predictable and because it lets you do something for this person immediately.

 

“A cold call is a great place to start because it’s predictable and because it lets you do something for this person immediately. And if you can get in a relationship with somebody where you can do something useful for them, something emotionally useful for them as the very first thing you do within a relationship, you’ve got a pretty good chance of creating trust.” – Chris Beal · [06:02] 

 

Chris Beall:

And if you can get in a relationship with somebody where you can do something useful for them, something emotionally useful for them as the very first thing you do within a relationship, you’ve got a pretty good chance of creating trust. And so that’s why I call it an ambush. Because one, it is an ambush. It really is. Let’s face it. And two, until you face it, you can’t behave correctly in the first seven seconds of the conversation. You don’t have the right mindset for saying what you need to say, how you need to say it in these very, very delicate moments that are there for the taking. And if you blow it, you blown it. For the rest of your life, you’ve blown it. That relationship is not going to flower. Whereas if you do it right in that first seven seconds, as long as you never blow up, this person will trust you for the rest of their life.

 

Chris Beall:

That’s a pretty big pivot point in a relationship, but how do you get your head in the right place to know what to do? It’s kind of saying, this will be for American baseball fans. If you want to play Major League Baseball, you have to be a will stand in there against a Major League curve ball, which appears to be coming right at you. If you don’t admit that it feels like it’s coming right at you, you’ll be crashing to the ground and bailing out or you’ll be bravely standing there to get hit by fast balls, one or the other. You got to recognise the situation as it is in order to be able to use that truth, the truth of the situation in order to do the right thing.

 

This is The Absolute Worst That Could Happen When You Cold Call Someone · [08:00] 

 

Will Barron:

Got it. I love it. And I love the way you’re not glossing over this. Now I try and do this as our training as well because there’s a lot of sales trainings out there that talk about tricks or hacks or ways to almost beat the psychological trauma, and I’m using that kind of, that’s too strong a way to describe it. But there is an element of, oh crap. I am potentially annoying someone here when they immediately pick up the phone and a lot of people try and gloss over that. And I think if you just be realist about it, it makes it a lot easier because the flip side of that is even though you might annoy someone until you have an opportunity to add value, until you can build that relationship, until you can get the conversation going, which we’ll get onto in a second, they can’t climb down the phone and come out the other end and strangle you. The worst that can happen is they go, “Right, that person’s an idiot, I’m not going to pick up their phone calls again.” Or you damage your personal brand slightly or the company’s brand, but there’s not that much on the line with regards to most cold calls, is there?

 

“The opportunity cost of a bad cold call is quite high.” – Chris Beal · [08:54] 

 

Chris Beall:

If there’s not in a negative sense, there is in a positive sense. It’s really interesting. The opportunity cost of a bad cold call is quite high. The cost, sort of the raw cost of a bad cold call in terms of your own emotions, maybe you’ll have a difficult time getting over it or not kind of depends on who you are. Grandmothers don’t have a problem with this. They can cold call all day long. Younger people who are not so sure of themselves and thinner skin and all that might have to recover a little bit from somebody saying whatever they say. But the fact is, once you deal with the facts, once you actually get into this, this is the fact and you get why it’s important for you to recognise and I have got a simple analogy. So say you want to save people’s lives because you have a steady hand, you’ve got a good mind, and a good heart and you want to be a surgeon, so you want to do heart surgery to save people because heart disease is a real big problem.

 

Chris Beall:

So you dedicate your life to studying and understanding anatomy and physiology and maybe even go all the way to bed side manner to talk to the loved ones and all this kind of good stuff. But you faint at the sight of blood. You faint, you’re out, you can’t be a heart surgeon. You’ve got to recognise very early in your developmental process as a surgeon, this truth, which is, can you work through the site blood because there’s always going to be blood?

 

Will Barron:

I create that analogy is real for you Chris. My partner, [inaudible 00:10:23] and the regulars know, she’s a doctor. First day of medical school, the cadavers on the table, chopping them up, cutting them to bits. They were given essentially hacksaws to hack off a limb each to take off to another part of the department and the whole point of that, she didn’t realise it at the time, but discussing it after the fact and now she does a bit of teaching as well is to get the doctors or the medical students to cut a few of them out who perhaps aren’t capable of handling that trauma. It is a bit weird chopping some dead person’s limb off, straight out of college. You’re some super nerd. You go for a load of box, the next thing you’re hack sawing someone who’s donated their body to medicine and science. And so, yeah. So that makes your analogy real because as I said, my Mrs has been through it.

 

“When people ask me what makes a good cold caller, number one is they have to be able to gain control of their voice in an emotionally difficult situation. It is emotionally difficult because you’re ambushing somebody. Can you get your voice to work naturally in an unnatural situation? And if you can do that, you’re great.” – Chris Beal · [11:16] 

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah. It’s an incredibly important. When people ask me, what makes a good cold caller? Number one is they have to be able ultimately to gain control of their voice in an emotionally difficult situation. It is emotionally difficult, you’re ambushing somebody. Can you get your voice to work naturally in an unnatural situation? And if you can do that, you’re great. But if you faint at the sight of blood, that is you tighten up so much that you sound artificial and you listen to a lot of cold calls and people sound sing songy. They have this different voice, their sales voice, hi blah, blah, blah, blah. I’m whoever, whatever and you just kind of roll your eyes. And that’s problematic and you can be trained to get used to the stress. That’s actually what we do in this flight school thing is a little aeroplane I have on me here.

 

Chris Beall:

We actually train people to be really, really good at keeping control of their voice in a natural way in the first seven seconds of the conversation. But you have to do it under pressure and no pressure. When you go from those cadavers to a live person, imagine the first time as a surgeon that you’ve got that scalpel in your hand and or you’ve got that you’re going to crack somebody’s chest open, you’ve got to feel pretty sick. That can’t be good, but you’ve got to somehow be able to keep your emotions under control and behave naturally. Naturally in this case means smoothly. You can’t have your hands shaking when you’re going to cut somebody’s chest open. It’s just not good for them. And you also have to think this in cold calling, when you cold call, you’re doing it for the other person.

 

Chris Beall:

That’s why you’re doing it. You’re not doing it for yourself. And my friend, Scott Webb who runs sales and growth and a bunch of stuff over at Hub International, he called me one day when he was going into a session using ConnectAndSell with his team blitz and coach session, he leads from the front. He does it himself. And he said, my mindset is wrong. I am going to go into each conversation feeling like I am stopping this person that I’ve never met from walking in front of a speeding bus. I’m going to save their life. And he went five for five, five meetings and five conversations called me up and said, that’s the key.

 

The Mindset You Need For the Perfect Cold Call · [13:40] 

 

Will Barron:

How much of the psychology that we’re talking about here, Chris, these metaphors, these analogies, these ways of changing our mental models I guess, the answer is it doesn’t matter, but how much of it can be just nonsense and have a positive effect of literally your power isn’t stopping anyone walk in front of a bus. But if he goes into a conversation with that mindset, he’s going to be in a position of more likely to add value during the call, however you want to describe it. So how much of this needs to be real logical step by step and how much of it is kind of just shifting your mindset, whether it’s actually true or not? Does that make sense? That wasn’t a very good question, but feel like [crosstalk 00:14:39]

 

Chris Beall:

No, it’s a great question. Actually, I love this question because it comes to that intersection of technique which is step by step by step and who we are, what are we bringing to the party as ourselves? Ask anybody who plays competitive sports, especially I’ll call it the exacting ones, the slow ones like golf. Golf is a great example of a very, very difficult game to play competitively. A lot of people can hit a golf ball in the range, very few people can hit one on the course and nobody can hit one in competition because it’s just too hard to be natural when you’re doing something that’s slow and considered and has got technique and mindset working together in real time and that’s what cold calling is. The seven seconds of a cold call are very similar to the amount of time it takes to set up to a golf ball, pull the club back and actually hit it.

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah. A lot of things can go wrong technically, and then one big camp thing can go wrong emotionally, which is you get tight. When I get tight, I hit the ball left. I’m a natural right to left hitter, boom, there’s somebody’s house and that’s what happens. So when I used to play more competitively, which I don’t at all anymore, somehow I had to do something inside myself that said it’s okay no matter what happens. That’s hard. Cold calling we have to do attitude things, but then we need technique. And the technique is exacting. It is second by second. It’s actually millisecond by millisecond and it has to do with the other person’s psychology. I think a lot of folks who talk about cold calling deal with the rep psychology, the caller. I don’t think the caller psychology is particularly important. Other than they’ve got to be confident that what they’re offering is really valuable for this other person. Even if they never do business with them, that’s really important. Everything else, no big deal. At that point, the technique becomes important because it’s about someone else’s mind. You’re doing brain surgery on somebody and you’ve got seven seconds to get it done.

 

The Only Technique You Need For the Perfect Cold Call · [17:00] 

 

Will Barron:

So let’s paint the picture then. Sam, the salesperson is selling a product that they know helps a specific prospect. We can narrow it down into a more succinct kind of metaphor if we like but he knows that they are able to help this individual. They’ve got data on it. They’ve got whatever it is. So they’re in a really good mindset themselves. What do they need to do from a technique perspective assuming that again, they are confident, they’re somewhat calm, they’re chilled, they know that they can help this person if they can just get through this first seven seconds, they can book that next meeting. They know that when the prospect gets on a demo with them, it’s wrapped up, it’s sealed. This person’s the perfect person to purchase from them and they’re somewhat qualified, somehow they’ve pre-qualified them. What does Sam need to do in that first seven seconds? And how does Sam need to I guess preempt the buyer’s psychology so that they can cater those seven seconds towards getting that next meeting booked in?

 

“The product you’re selling is the meeting, not the product. So you have to believe in the potential value of the meeting for this individual, even in the downside case where you never do business together. So you have to know what’s on offer in the meeting. What are they going to learn? That’s the product. And I think the biggest mistake that most people make is they sell past the meeting. They sell the product as though the product is going to draw somebody in the meeting. It’s not. Curiosity is going to draw somebody into a meeting.” – Chris Beall · [17:43]

 

Chris Beall:

Well, I got lucky on this. So first a small point, the product you’re selling is the meeting, not the product. So you have to believe in the potential value of the meeting for this individual, this human being, even in the downside case where you never do business together. So you have to know what’s on offer in the meeting. What are they going to learn? That’s the product. It’s the universal product of B2B is the meeting. And I think the biggest mistake that most people make is they sell past the meeting. They sell the product as though the product is going to draw somebody in the meeting. It’s not. Curiosity is going to draw somebody into a meeting. So if you look at the emotional journey and say, what about the first seven seconds? You have to know where the prospect starts. The prospect starts in fear.

 

“Where you need to take your prospect during a cold call is immediately to trust. From trust we want to take them to curiosity and from curiosity to verbal commitment, and eventually to action.” – Chris Beall · [18:26]

 

Chris Beall:

They’re afraid of you, the invisible stranger. You just ambushed them. We might call it annoyance or whatever. Trust me, it’s fear. Where you need to take them is immediately to trust. From trust we want to take them to curiosity and from curiosity to commitment, verbal commitment, and eventually to action. So our big problem is how do we get from fear to trust. That one sounds impossible. Seems like we should go through a lot of steps, maybe go through value. I have value for you, blah, blah, blah. Turns out we don’t need any of that. So Chris Voss actually taught me this, the author of Never Split the Difference. They nailed this in FBI land I guess with hostage negotiators. I asked him one night I was fortunate enough to be at a dinner with him. And I asked him, “How long do we have to get trust in a cold call?”

 

“The reason that cold calling actually can be allowed to work 100% of the time is you can show the other person you see the world through their eyes. And all you have to do is say this phrase correctly, with the right heart, then it works. You say, “I know I’m an interruption.” Not something soft like, “Oh, I do believe I might well be interrupting your day.” Or any of the crap that people want to say. Take full accountability for being the ambusher, see the world through their eyes.” – Chris Beal · [19:38] 

 

Chris Beall:

And he says, “Seven seconds.” Oh okay, our research says eight seconds. He says, “Your research is wrong. It’s seven seconds.” That’s interesting. So what do we need to do in those seven seconds? He said, “Oh, that’s easy, all we have to do is show this other party, we see the world through their eyes. We call it tactical empathy. And then we need to demonstrate to them we’re competent to solve a problem they have right now.” And I said, “Well, isn’t the problem they have right now me.?” And he said, “Bingo, that’s why you’re in control.” So the reason that cold calling actually can be allowed to work 100% of the time is 100% of the time, you can show that other person you see the world through their eyes. And all you have to do is say something like this. I happen to like this particular phrase, it’s easy to learn. It’s hard to emit. But if you can get to the point of saying this correctly, with the right heart, then it works.

 

Chris Beall:

You say, “I know I’m an interruption.” Not something soft like, “Oh, I do believe I might well be interrupting your day.” Or any of the crap that people want to say. Take full accountability for being the ambusher, see the world through their eyes. That’s easy. Except it’s hard to say, because we’ve been told don’t be bad. Don’t be the bad person ever since we were little tiny children. We have a baby in the family now, not Helen and me, but her daughter. And that baby is already being told by her parents who are wonderful people. But every once in a while, don’t do this, don’t do that. That’s what we get told growing up.

 

Chris Beall:

The main thing we hear is don’t be bad. Don’t be that bad person. Don’t be a bad kid. We’re told this, I don’t know. I tried to count it once, I figure by the time you become old enough to cold call, you’ve probably been told half a million times, stop being bad. And now you’ve got to go and agree to be bad. The bad thing, not even a bad act, but you have to agree, you are a bad thing. You are the problem. Get over that and learn how to say, “I know I’m an interruption.” Hammering the word, no. And then being clear about the interruption part and your voice is hard and flat. And then you’ve got to switch your voice to playful and curious so that you can offer a solution to the problem, which is you. You’re the problem.

 

Chris Beall:

This person has one goal in life at this point, to get off this call with their self-image intact, that’s their goal. Isn’t that great? You know somebody else’s goal. It’s fantastic. Offer to help them. So how to help them? Simple exchange. Ask them a question of fact in a playful, curious voice. We know the answer, by the way, they can certainly spare 27 seconds they answered the phone. So offer a simple deal. “Can I have 27 seconds?” As the voice goes up, playful, “To tell you why I called?” Little chuckle helps, “Can I have 27 seconds to tell you why I called?” And then you’ve offered a solution to the problem they have which is you. At that point, they will trust you for the rest of their life. As long as you don’t blow it, how do you blow it? Try to sell to them, turn into a salesperson, then you’ll blow it. That is, you’ve just gone from being the worst thing, an ambushing invisible stranger to a new thing, which is a trusted human being. You’re way up on the hierarchy at this point, then you can go to the second least trusted profession in the world by trying to sell to them, or you can offer them the opportunity to be curious about something, better path.

 

How to Sell Without Selling Out · [22:50] 

 

Will Barron:

I feel like a good diagram this out in a really simple frame work. Does this, hey, I understand the situation that you’re in. So in this instance, the situation is that I’m annoying you, but later on in the sales process, it’ll be a different situation whether you’ve identified that pain points or whatever it is, here is how I can help you solve the solution. Let’s solve the solution. Could this feedback loop happen not just from the first seven seconds but towards the three months of the deal cycle that we’re working on. Can we just do this over and over and over and sum up a lot of B2B sales as this three step framework?

 

“Curiosity within a trust framework is the most powerful thing that leads to good end states. The good end state in a sales situation, well, there’s two. One is you decide not to move forward together. So you save a bunch of time. And the other is you decide to take another step.” – Chris Beall · [23:55] 

 

Chris Beall:

Yes. I believe this is the framework. I think Andy Paul just wrote a book at which he made clear that this is the framework. His book is Sell Without Selling Out and he offers a four step framework or a four pillar framework of connecting with somebody which is important so you actually connect with them oddly enough, when you ambushed them, it’s a funny connection, but it’s a connection. So then the question is sort of, well, what’s next? And his next is curiosity, which I agree with deeply. So that cycle of connection and curiosity, curiosity within a trust framework is the most powerful thing that leads to good end states, because the good end state in a sales situation, well, there’s two. One is you decide not to move forward together. So you save a bunch of time. And the other is you decide to take another step.

 

Chris Beall:

Why does somebody want to take another step? Well, they trust you a little bit more than they trust themselves for making that decision because you’re the specialist, you’re the salesperson. You know what you know, they’re the generalist and they’re risking their career. So they’ve got to trust you more than somebody and that somebody happens to be themselves. So the threshold for the next step is always from the buyer’s perspective. Do I trust this person, the seller, more than I trust myself with regard to the decision as to whether we should take a next step? That cycle runs forever. And as long as then, your curiosity allows you to go all the way to understanding and then to generosity, you actually offer something in the next step, you have a cycle that goes on forever. I think Andy Paul has nailed it and I’ve read the book now twice in the last four weeks. I’m now listening to it. I think that’s it. I think that’s the great, that’s like the circle of life out of Lion King or something, it’s that simple.

 

The Best Salespeople Have a Sales Process · [25:45] 

 

Will Barron:

Love it. I love it. All our training, Chris, if you’re not familiar is all down to these step by step simple frameworks. That’s all we teach because I feel like a lot of sales get over complicated especially when we’re talking about enterprise, the complex sale, the long sale, the consultative selling. So I love it when we can break it down as succinctly as that. And we had Andy on the show maybe last week, last Monday, I think it was to cover all this. So the audience will hopefully have heard that before the end of this episode.

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah, so I mean, Andy’s been right all along. He brings an engineer’s perspective to something that requires engineering thinking, but about stuff that people don’t normally think about in engineering fashion, which is what’s going on inside that person? And what is a simple driver? Who are you as a salesperson? You’re somebody who can help somebody. Why? Because you’re a specialist, you represent a specialist capability. Companies are specialists, they do one thing, they don’t do everything, it would be ridiculous to do everything. So the specialist comes to offer the opportunity to be helpful to the generalist who might need that specialisation. That’s actually at the core of B2B sales. Once you recognise that it’s well, at this time, can this person be helped by learning more about what we specialise in? That is, should we take that next step? It’s very natural at some point for that to become commercial because otherwise it’s imbalanced. Somebody’s got to pay at some point, but that’s not the big deal. The big deal isn’t the transaction. Transactions I think are in modern sales are actually completely irrelevant except in the negative. When you have a salesperson who has had enough time to have a bunch of transactions and they haven’t, that’s a very lagging indicator that you should have paid attention to something earlier.

 

How to Handle Sales Objections During a Cold Call · [27:10] 

 

Will Barron:

Yeah, that makes sense. Two things I want to get into, one, what do we do if, heaven forbid we get an objection at this, can I have 27 seconds of your time kind of pivotal moment in this cold call. I’m sure there’s only three sales objections ever come out at this point, just reworded and rebranded in different ways. But is there any specific pathway we should take at that point? Is there anything we should specifically say? Because I know that the audience listening to this now will be thinking, well, what if, which might be the wrong mindset to have altogether. The correct mindset might be to let’s do this 50 times and see how it works but I’ll cut off their objection before they kind of throw it our way. What happens if or how do we deal with that objection at that critical moment of the conversation?

 

Chris Beall:

Sure. Well preemptively, what you do is you go from scarcity to abundance. That’s our business is we’ll take you from conversation scarcity to conversation abundance. And so it gives you the option of just going, oh, okay, talk to you later. And that actually is a pretty good answer when somebody says, “No, I don’t have the time.” It’s “Great. I’ll give you a call later.” That actually works quite well. Push a button now, three minutes later, you talk to somebody else, but make sure you put them on your follow up list and have this conversation. So I got to look at my watch to see what the date is, Wednesday the 23rd. So the conversation would be this when you get them on the phone again, say a week later or whatever. Say, “Hey, when we spoke back on the 23rd, you didn’t have time for a conversation. You were walking into a meeting.” Or whatever they told you, whatever the objection is, just play it back to them and ask them, “Is now a better time to talk?”

 

“You can blow the trust you built in the first seven seconds by insisting that somebody who says they don’t have time for you make time. That’s the dumbest thing in the world to do, but people do it. Sales people do it out of a scarcity mindset.” – Chris Beall · [29:08]

 

Chris Beall:

It’s one of those straight things, asking is now a good time to talk is incredibly ineffective. But the comparative asking them, “Is now a better time to talk?” Is very easy. It’s got to be a better time last time. Well, they didn’t have time to talk. Now they might say “No, actually blah, blah, blah, I’m doing whatever.” But now you’re in a trust relationship and this is part of the don’t blow it. You can blow the trust you built in the first seven seconds by insisting that somebody who says they don’t have time for you to take time. That’s the dumbest thing in the world to do, but people do it. Sales people do it out of a scarcity mindset.

 

“Once you have abundance, you can be relaxed. And once you’re relaxed, then your calls will be good.” – Chris Beall · [30:08] 

 

Chris Beall:

Well, what if I don’t get them again? Pat Lynch, who is the chief of, a sales enablement officer or something like that, a life person, maybe he’s a VP, I think of him as a chief, good friend of mine lives here in [inaudible 00:29:38] actually with us in our neighbourhood. He watched my reps once in Denver for a whole day. I left the office, when we used to have an office, I’d left just to have him observe and tell me something. And at the end of the day, he said, “That rep over there, just let a CEO go without any effort to keep him on the phone. I don’t understand it.” And I said, “Well, Jordan, why’d you do that?” And he says, “Because I can push a button and talk to somebody else.” So that’s number one is once you have abundance, you can be relaxed.

 

Chris Beall:

And once you’re relaxed, then that’s good. However, if somebody is kind of indicating that they want to talk a little bit and they want to talk about whether they have 27 seconds, you always get to just say this, which is they’re giving you the 27 seconds, they’re talking. So you may as well just tell them why you called. And at that point, just tell them why you called. I mean, it’s a simple trade. They’re not going to stop you. So there’s not that many ways that somebody is going to say, “I don’t have have 27 seconds.” Why did you answer the phone? Don’t argue with them. It’s just in your head. You know damn well they had 27 seconds. Does anybody answer the phone when they don’t have 27 seconds? It’s insane. That’s a crazy proposition. That’s like, oh, I answered the phone, but I actually only have four seconds.

 

Chris Beall:

Well, what if this had been somebody calling to say, “By the way, I’m, I’m holding a check here with your name on it for $2,372,147 and I’d like to know where to send it.” You you’ll have 27 seconds telling them your address. So clearly they have 27 seconds. So you could just go ahead and say, you tell me, “Gosh, I don’t Chris but I’m really busy.” It’s fantastic. I would say, “Well, I believe we’ve discovered a breakthrough.” And then tell them what your breakthrough is. Just takes 17, 18 seconds and now you’ve fulfilled your promise and you did it in less than 27 seconds so now you’ve actually done a piece of psychological magic. You made a promise and you kept a promise. Whoa, and you did it all within the 17 seconds that follow the first seven seconds. And it’s a really easy formulation, but it’s hard to say.

 

Chris Beall:

I have reps all the time go, “I can’t say I have a breakthrough.” It’s, well, why are you in business? What? Really? Your company doesn’t have any breakthroughs. You leave your customers stuck behind the problem they have now rather than breaking through and being able to progress. That doesn’t make sense. Of course you have a breakthrough. Let’s come up with simple language so you can say that. Why? Because we’re just trying to get somebody curious enough to take a meeting for their own good. That’s all we’re trying to do. Relax. I believe we’ve discovered a breakthrough. That completely eliminates the waste and the frustration that keeps your best sales reps from being effective on the phone or even using the phone at all. And the reason I reached out is to get 15 minutes on your calendar to share this breakthrough with you. That took 17 seconds. And I told you why I called.

 

“The prospect’s problem during a cold call is getting off this call with their self-image intact. That is their problem. That problem will never change, all the way up to the end of the call. That’s their only problem, so your job is to help them solve their problem.” – Chris Beall · [33:40] 

 

Chris Beall:

And they might say, now here’s the objection, the worst objection, here’s a bad objection. This objection is so bad I have to warn people about it. It’s be ready for this one they’ll say, “What? Tell me more.” That’s a hideous objection. I call it the Venus fly trap. Because what it does is lures you the rep into holding the meeting that you’re trying to sell. So you’re under selling a meeting, you’re basically saying, oh this is such cheap crap in this meeting that I can tell it to you right now when I ambushed you. It’s like what? That makes no sense. Nobody’s waiting for somebody to ambush them and tell them how to do their job. It’s insulting. What they’re looking for is another way to solve their problem. The prospect problem still is getting off this call with their self-image intact.

 

Chris Beall:

That is their problem. That problem will never change. That’s it. All the way up to the end of the call. That’s their only problem. Help them as Andy Paul says to solve their problem. Well, how do I help them? I make a trade, 27 seconds, I tell them why I called. Now what? Well, I’ve got a little extra time and I sincerely believe that this meeting’s good for them. “Okay, do you happen to have your calendar available?” Question of fact set in a playful, curious voice, not asking them to do anything. No matter what they say, you pretty much say something on the order of, “I’m a morning person, how’s your Thursday. I’ll send you something, we’ll move it around.”

 

“You don’t have to choke somebody to death in order to get them to verbally agree to a meeting.” – Chris Beall · [34:25]

 

Chris Beall:

You don’t have to choke somebody to death in order to get them to verbally agree to a meeting. You don’t, you can just, you know the meeting’s good, modern calendaring allows you to shoot a calendar invite to somebody it goes on their calendar. And in fact, 55% of the time that they’re going to show up no matter what you said, and reminders and all that help, but you’re going to have to talk to them again anyway, and that’s fine. We call this psychologically a connect and so going from if to when. If is really hard. That’s a decision, when is really easy. There’s a lot of time in the future. We’re going to talk it sometime. We’re going to meet.

 

The Number One Mistake Salespeople Make During a Cold Call · [35:10] 

 

Will Barron:

Love it. Love it. The big thing here. So I’m going to break down this episode and if [inaudible 00:35:13] said, I’m going to add some extra notes in the show notes to this episode over salesman.org for people to follow along with. So there’s that, but something that I don’t, you slightly glossed over it because clearly you’ve said it a million times and it’s part of your vernacular. But this idea of just not blowing it is so important because I’ve had so many from email specific, no one has my phone number. So no one calls or calls me. I don’t give it to anyone. You cannot get my number. It does not exist on the internet, any database. All of the people I’ve add on from different kind of database organisations have tried to get my number. In fact, there was an open bounty a couple of years ago of I’ll give you two grand, $2,000 if you can cold call me on my phone. I’ve only got one work phone.

 

Will Barron:

So I guess that still stands. I’ve not touched on that in a while. But with that said, I get cold emails all of the time. And the first one I ignore most of the time, because I’m busy. Just my inbox is so full, I just delete stuff. The second one I’ll be, okay, well, maybe this sort of to this, I’ll read it. Then there’ll be the third or the fourth, and at that point, I’m going okay, maybe I should just jump on the call with this individual because hopefully they’ve demonstrated, they understand what we do, our business, there’s some kind of unique insight in there, it’s been personalised, perhaps have shared some content I clicked on and was relevant, whatever it is. But then the fifth to sixth email, they blow it.

 

Will Barron:

They do some kind of breakup email or there’s some weirdness to it or you can sense a little bit of them going, oh [inaudible 00:36:41] if you’re not going to reply to me, I’ll end it [crosstalk 00:36:45] before you get to end it. And so I love this idea of just don’t blow it because especially with cold calls, you’re trying to catch one when they pick up the phone. So that knocks your success rate of connecting down immediately versus an email can be found a day later, a week later, an hour later, wherever it is. So you’re already slightly on the back foot with it. Then you use tools like what you have at ConnectAndSell which kind of magnify and increase your ability to get those [inaudible 00:37:12] in, get the people on the phone, which is amazing, but then just be polite and don’t blow it.

 

Will Barron:

Because you might have called them at exactly the wrong time. The dogs just got run over, something just happened at work. They literally can’t speak because there’s a flood in the building and they’re trying to deal with it and they thought that you were the plumber and you came with them a few days later, a week later, a month later, whatever it is. And eventually as long as you are polite, I don’t know about you Chris but I find that that wears down on me as our company’s tiny, I’ve got tiny budgets to spend, but we do spend money on B2B products and services. And if a salesperson connects with me whether it be via typically a meeting, an email, then a Zoom call, whatever it is. And it’s not the right time to do a deal right now, eventually is the right time.

 

Will Barron:

And that’s the person I seek out to do business with. So this isn’t great when you’ve got, you’re behind quota and you work for a crappy company that’s not helping you with marketing leads and your out bounds not going well and you don’t have connected sell. You don’t have dialling software and you’re struggling. This is not the advice that you want to hear at that point when you’re on the verge of being sucked and you attained your quota, but for anyone who’s doing all right, this idea of just don’t blow it and you stay in the same sales role for two to five years, you just keep going along and building that momentum and building that list of people who know I can trust you from afar via cold call and via your personalised emails, via maybe time, a little bit of content creation or content curation if your customers are on LinkedIn or wherever it is, and engage with them there, the events as and kind of conferences as that kind of opens up again, all of this in my experience build up into to 18 months, two years later, you start absolutely crushing your quota and you’re doing less work than all the people who are working late and “hustling” because you just built that momentum over time by not blowing it. I know I’m just throwing a lot at you there, but is there something to say for that strategy?

 

Chris Beall:

Yeah. I mean, it’s everything. For one thing, 11/12ths of your ideal market is not in market this quarter for your offering because the replacement cycle for B2B products is about three years. So last I checked they were 12 quotas in three years. Therefore only in one of those quotas, 1/12th is your ideal market, somebody is perfect actually in market for your product. So right there, you’ve got to relax and go, oh, not market this quota so maybe I should talk to them next quota. Now, one of the funny things is about ConnectAndSell about cold calling in general is you actually curate a sub list of people who do answer the phone, where you can have that trust relationship built in seven seconds because you have access to their mid brain at 20,000 bits a second.

 

Chris Beall:

And you’re smart. You don’t let people have access to your mid brain at 20,000 bits a second. You make them come in through 5,000 bit emails that you can choose to pay attention to or not. And so, okay, I’ll call it you’re structurally defended, you have a good castle, but people who have to answer the phone in their business or do it by habit like me like to do it because I think talking to people’s fun, those people are opening up their mid brain, their decision centres to a 20,000 bit per second flow of potentially psychologically compelling information coming in through their ears. They can’t do anything about that. There’s nothing they can, nor should they by the way. But if you blow it by trying to go, oh, here’s what, I have two goals, one to get you to trust me. The other is to get you to buy something. You’re kind of screwed. You got to choose one goal at a time.

 

“If you are a rock climber or a mountaineer, looking at the summit doesn’t get you to the summit, dreaming about the summit doesn’t get you to the summit. You have to do the movement in front of you, and you have to do it in a way that you’re fairly unlikely to fall off.” – Chris Bealll · [40:58]

 

Chris Beall:

I’m an old rock climber mountaineer. It’s an idea in climbing that’s really clear looking at the summit doesn’t get you to the summit, dreaming about the summit doesn’t get you to the summit. You have to do the move in front of you. You have to do the move in front of you and you have to do it in a way that you’re fairly unlikely to fall off. That’s problematic in climbing it turns out. So it’s the same thing. You get to do the move in front of you and you have to do it in a way where you’re unlikely to fall off. That is not be trusted anymore. Here’s what folks don’t get. And this is why I have a podcast. If you get somebody in a situation where as a result of how you interact, they trust you and you don’t blow it, you’ve actually sealed off the market against all competitors with regard to that information or that particular offer for all time because somebody else coming in has now got to displace that trust. And if you try to displace trust that somebody has in someone else, you will not be trusted so they’ll blow it.

 

Will Barron:

Got it, got it. I love it.

 

“You can pave the market with trust and harvest it at your leisure. And your leisure is three years, in general is three years. Your prospect’s readiness is never going to be in the past. It’s always going to be in the future. So what are you doing about the future? Well, number one, don’t blow it. Number one, just don’t blow it.” – Chris Beall · [42:02]

 

Chris Beall:

You can pave the market with trust and harvest it at your leisure. And your leisure is three years, in general is three years. And that 18 months you talked about that is generally the tipping point where you stop working and you feel like you’re just having these nice conversations that wow, suddenly they’re ready. That’s of course their readiness is never going to be in the past. It’s always going to be in the future. So what are you doing about the future? Well, number one, don’t blow it. Number one, just don’t blow it.

 

Parting Thoughts · [42:50]

 

Will Barron:

Got it. Well, with that Chris, I’ll stay on it, I’d love to have you back on to dive into this deeper. I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface of your brain mate, on some of the things we can pull out on this idea of cold calling and don’t blow it, that in its own is super valuable takeaway for the audience. And with that mate, take us through ConnectAndSell, what you do over there, where we can find out more and then tell us about the podcast as well.

 

Chris Beall:

Sure. I mean, ConnectAndSell is super simply push a button and talk to somebody on your list. We do everything else, including navigating phone systems, talking to gatekeepers, hanging up on voicemail. You don’t have to do anything. You just push, talk. We do by the way, this thing called an intensive test drive, that’s a free full day of production. It’s a lot of fun and it’s kind of a lottery ticket. Sometimes folks make a million bucks or two. Sometimes they just have a bunch of conversations. You can find out about ConnectAndSell obviously at connectandsell.com where there’s a bunch of information, none of which is relevant because the only thing that counts is what does it feel like to go this fast and that’s the test drive. And if you really want to kind of go deep on all these psychological concepts, so how to dominate eight markets with the human voice and how to get 14 times more of your emails open because you talk to somebody first, go to marketdominanceguys.com and see if you can wade through Corey, Frank and I talking endlessly.

 

Will Barron:

Amazing stuff. Well, to all that in the show note to this episode and more welcome diagrams and some illustrations about what Chris has shared with us in the share notes over at salesman.org and with that Chris, thank you for your time, your insights on this mate, I really enjoyed the conversation and for joining us on the Salesman Podcast.

 

Chris Beall:

Thanks.

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