Almost every day, visitors to my Unlock The Game? website click on my live instant-messenger chat button, which invites them to "Ask Ari a selling question."
And do you know what their most common question is?
Yes, you guessed it: "Is there any way I can break through or overcome my fear of cold calling?"
Most of us have at least some resistance to cold calling, and some people I talk with have such a paralyzing visceral and emotional fear of cold calling that they can't even consider doing it.
In some ways, the fear of cold calling is practically an epidemic -- but not the kind of epidemic that gets publicized on TV or in newspapers.
It's a silent and personal one, a psychological struggle that happens in our own hearts and minds.
The fear of cold calling is a painful, daily struggle for many entrepreneurs and salespeople who have been trained in traditional selling techniques.
Traditional sales trainers answer questions about cold calling this way:
"All you have to do is make more phone calls."
"All you have to do is think more positive thoughts."
"Just learn to accept rejection as a normal part of selling."
In other words, "It's your fault that you aren't succeeding in sales."
This is like telling someone who's terrified of jumping off a diving board,
"Don't be a wimp! Just jump!"
In my experience, very few people are able to overcome their fears that way,
because the underlying message is that, if you force yourself to do something
uncomfortable, "just doing it" will magically solve the problem.
But this is a response that shows no understanding at all of the psychological
barriers that underlie the fear of cold calling.
So, how do you overcome your fear of cold calling?
In my opinion, the solution actually is simple, and is based on understanding
three simple concepts:
1. It's Not Your Fault
We can't help thinking there's something wrong with us if other people
keep telling us that something shouldn't be a problem, but our own
inner feelings tell us that we aren't comfortable doing it.
There's a sort of "old boys' club" sales-conditioning mentality prevalent
in English-speaking countries, including the US, Canada, the UK, Australia,
and New Zealand, that says, "I had to suffer to succeed in sales success,
so you need to, too!"
This thinking comes from traditional sales programs that continue to be
the accepted approach to selling.
What you need to understand, though, is that you may fear cold calling
because you have probably been exposed only to traditional
selling approaches, which triggers rejection.
These approaches teach us to make cold calls this way: introduce yourself,
explain what you do, suggest a benefit to the potential client...and then
close your eyes and pray that they won't reply with "Sorry, not interested"
or "Sorry, I'm busy."
If you're still using this traditional approach, you probably hear responses
like these the moment you stop talking.
They're rejections, and what they do us make you feel rejected -- and that's
reason enough to make you dislike, fear, and avoid cold calling.
How can cold calling be a positive experience if rejection
is the most common response you get?
2. Are Your Self-Perceptions Passive or Aggressive?
Whenever I chat with people about the fear of cold calling, they almost
always tell me that they're afraid to make cold calls because they don't
want to be perceived as "aggressive."
This is another part of the internal battle -- they beat themselves up for being
too passive and lacking the confidence to make the next call, but they don't
want to call for fear of being seen as aggressive.
Here's the good news: there is a middle ground between "aggressive" and passive."
It's a place where you can be who you are while still being extremely effective
with cold calling, without ever experiencing rejection again.
Unlock The Game? shows you how you can be incredibly effective in cold calling without triggering rejection from potential clients. Imagine the possibilities (and the income potential).
3. Learn to Let Your Language Match Your Thinking
If you can center yourself into a place where you can let go of feeling that you
have to go on using traditional cold calling "scripts" and behaviors, you'll find yourself spontaneously using language that you would use in a natural conversation.
Using natural words and phrases -- speaking exactly the way you would with someone
you know, can transform cold calling into a refreshing and productive experience.
And, as you let go of the old-school cold calling model, in which
your product or service is your only way of generating a phone conversation
with a prospect, you'll make the most crucial transition of all: you'll begin thinking
of approaching potential prospects not from your perspective, but from theirs.
What do I mean by that?
Imagine what it would be like if you could hear your prospect's thoughts about
the problems they are having -- and that your solution can solve.
Even more importantly, suppose you could also make note of the words
and phrases they're using as they think about their problems, and that you
could take that language and embed it in your cold calling approach.
"Yes, but how would I do that?" you might ask.
It's simple. Just ask your current clients what three core problems
your product or service has solved for them.
When you change your thinking, you can't help changing the language
that you use, which lets you connect in a whole new positive way
with the other person you are calling.
If you can let go of your old-school belief system and open up to the possibility
that there is a more natural, comfortable way to cold call -- one that doesn't
trigger rejection -- you'll be surprised by how easily you'll break through
and overcome your fear of cold calling.
With a Masters Degree in Instructional Design and over a decade of experience creating breakthrough sales strategies for global companies such as UPS and QUALCOMM, Ari Galper discovered the missing link that people who sell have been seeking for years.
His profound discovery of shifting one's mindset to a place of complete integrity, based on new words and phrases grounded in
sincerity, has earned him distinction as the world's leading authority on how to build trust in the world of selling.
Leading companies such as Gateway, Clear Channel Communications, Brother International and Fidelity National Mortgage have called on Ari to keep them on the leading edge of sales performance. Visit http://www.unlockthegame.com to get his free sales training lessons.