From the outset, this blog is not about telemarketing cold calling campaigns at all where random area telephone numbers are called at prearranged times and dates. Be aware that actions and efforts of random area telephone cold calling are quite likely subject to the tentacles and grasp of the National Do Not Call Registry with all the implications and financial penalties attendant to such tactics. Additionally, it is common knowledge that most random area cold calling efforts, upwards of ninety percent or more, are a complete waste of time anyway.
All this being said, the cold calling communications that can become investor gold is all about targeted lead generation and follow up, creating, implementing, maintaining, and repeating a system of smart prospecting, first to seek and acquire a treasure trove of leads, then to separate pretenders from prospects, shoveling through the mud for golden nuggets, leads leading to deals.
Targeted cold calling, like the more generic and more random cold calling efforts, can be intimidating. Cold calling is hard to do, it is uncomfortable. If done right, it can be very effective. It takes time, practice, and effort to become successful, but the payoff is huge as you overcome the fear and discomfort of a first contact. Another example of rinse and repeat. You will soon master the art of massaging a first cold call to lead status.
These targeted leads can come from any number of sources, many more creative than others. Some sources are from the online presence of giants such as Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, realtor.com, even Craig’s List, as well as other online solutions. Realtors, brokers, and mining public records judiciously are other sources to name several.
It is important to recognize that those recipients of your targeted cold calling are likely being bombarded by others, some very similarly situated to you, and you have to very sincerely and very comfortably overcome their natural apprehension and aversion to cold calls from folks they do not know with calls they never initiated in one fashion or another.
You need to develop a comfortably skilled phone call presence. Keep it simple, to the point, and friendly. Tell the recipient very quickly and briefly who you are and how to came to call upon them. Always be yourself. The call should be but a couple minutes, five minutes at most. Never sound scripted, you come off as phony and unhelpful if you do. Remember, they have to like you enough to hear you out. Always keep in mind that the person on the other end of that call has a personality of their own and you must come equipped with the attitude that you can be a problem solver of theirs, their white knight. Be comfortable, casual yet professional, seemingly interested only if the fit may be right, never desperate, and never come off as a salesman working a mark, seeking a wad of cash. All in three to five minutes. The goal is to break the ice, catch their attention, make them aware you have something valuable you may be able to offer them. If nothing else, brighten their day, even smile or laugh, if nothing else, securing their permission for you to stay in touch. Let’s say the recipient advises they have received a number of unwelcome calls from folks just like you in the past couple days. You might respond by saying “A lot of annoying calls, huh. Folks often say if you don’t have a friend who is either a realtor or investor, you don’t have many friends”.
A simple phone script or cheat sheet can be helpful and keep you on point and very concise. Scripts make it easier for you to have a casual conversational flow with no dead time. The role of the script is to allow you to smoothly handle reservations, objections, or concerns that are likely to come up time and again. You never want to be thrown off your game even for a moment when you have but only a few to make a favorable first impression. Always be non-confrontational, tactful, understanding, never abrupt or pushy. Create a call to action to cement a next step.
Your cold calling success is defined by an arranged next step. An in person meeting now arranged or permission granted for a follow up. Everything you do as a real estate investor requires recipient contact and communication, either on the phone or in person. So developing a killer phone presence is turning calling cold into gold.