Why Cold Calling is Dead, and Digital Marketing is the Future!
Just to put it out there, cold calling is dead and digital marketing has now taken over as the best method for lead generation. Here are just a few of the reasons why people seem to prefer digital marketing to the now ancient art of cold calling.
·They’re not comfortable answering calls from strangers. If they don’t recognise your phone number, they really don’t have a reason to pick up.
·If they do answer your call, why are they going to trust you? They have no reason to trust you.
·There is simply no incentive to return your call whatsoever.
·They expect that quality advisors will not be cold calling.
So, a question for you, why does digital marketing work better for insurance marketing campaigns?
Everyone is online – Through digital marketing, you can connect with almost every imaginable audience or group in the world. There are no limitations when it comes to geographic, demographic or even language barriers. In fact, if the numbers of users in the 55+ category has increased on social media by nearly 80% in the last few years. This makes it the fastest growing demographic for the platform. Therefore, in conclusion if you are looking to reach your target market, you WILL find them online.
You have added trust – When it comes to cold calling, you’re asking people to trust you without first giving them a reason. This approach has always been challenging, but never more so than now. If they can find social proof of your skill online, then they’re more likely to come to you. Because people have gotten used to finding what they need online, it’s a lot easier to lead them to you. You can make a trust deposit by creating helpful content on your blogs and sharing it via social media.
Its more cost effective – There is a common misconception that cold calling is the cheaper option of the two because all it takes is time. Yet, your time is the most valuable resource you have. Many, fail to give adequate value to their time. Producing positive ROI is about spending time doing what you do best and streamlining the rest. Sometimes, that could mean outsourcing your marketing department.
It broadens your reach – Cold calling is strictly one to one outreach. This severely limits the number of people you can contact at a time. Even the best cold callers can only make a few hundred calls a day, maximum. Digital marketing gives you the chance to grow your reach exponentially. When one person reads, and shares your content, their entire network can see it. If a few people share it your reach will grow and grow and grow. This is the basis for viral marketing – the holy grail of content marketing.
Prospects are in their comfort zone – Your prospects will be more likely to trust you if they’re able to verify your ability and credibility. Through digital marketing, you can provide social proof via testimonials and case studies. These types of content are hugely effective at turning visitors into leads and leads into prospects.
Prospects and salespeople seem to hate cold calling with equal passion. It’s intrusive and annoying for buyers, and its ineffective, time consuming and draining for reps. If cold calling is the school bully, social selling is the new kid on the block. Fortunately for everyone involved in this, social selling is more than capable of knocking cold calling back into the stone age where it belongs.
A good case study that I can use to evidence this was a study that was done by the Keller Research Centre at Baylor University shows that a mere 1% of cold calls eventually become opportunities, though I suppose if you do enough of them you might gain a small ROI. Meanwhile, a 2014 Forrester Research report found that social sellers realise 66% greater quota attainment than those who use traditional prospecting techniques.
So, with all that said I will talk you through some facts on why cold calling is well and truly dead, and before I start this I want to inform you that I specifically mean cold calling, warm calling is still a vital cog in digital marketing, I know this due to the fact that at Limitless we have gained business through a warm call, but only after previously communicating with them on social media channels such as LinkedIn.
Anyways, let’s get onto the facts of why the cold call is now well and truly a dinosaur in a world where social media marketing is fast becoming the dominant force. As previously mentioned the conversion rates aren’t even a contest would you rather spend a full day ringing people, continuously being hung up on by tonnes of people that just aren’t bothered? Or, would you rather create posts about your services boost the post and gain business through social media, you have to remember as well practically EVERYONE is on social. After all, according to the Keller Research Centre, 72% of prospects don’t even engage in conversations sparked by a cold call. Meanwhile, 69% of leads from Facebook/Twitter/Other social media channels convert to opportunities.
Moving on to the next point on why cold calling is well and truly dead, that being that exec level buyers say that a measly 30% of salespeople are prepared for the questions they ask. A buyer relationship builds over time. There’s no way a sales person or cold caller can be as prepared as a social seller. 74% of buyers choose the salesperson who was the first to add value and insight. This is a combination of both increasing pressure and greater appreciation of those who were able to help them, this tends to be done through social media more than it is through cold calling, this is because you can find out more about their interests through communicating with them as opposed to just calling them and offering a service to someone who simply isn’t interested.
We now move on to yet another reason why social media marketing is far superior to cold calling, is when it comes to decision making 75% of B2B leaders say they regularly use social media in their decision-making process. Meanwhile, 9 out of 10 top level B2B decision makers just don’t respond to the call, the cold call that is.
And now I am going to give you a few facts that once and for all prove that cold calling is indeed a dying star, whilst social media marketing is brand new and has plenty of years to go yet.
• 98% of sales reps with 5000+ LinkedIn connections achieve quota (Source)
• 89% of customers begin their buying proves with a search engine (Source)
• 75% of customers say they use social media as part of their buying process (Source)
• 74% of B2B marketing companies use Twitter to distribute content (Source)
• 72.6% of salespeople using social media outperformed their sales peers (Source)
And now a few facts on cold calling.
• 91% of the time, cold calling doesn’t work (Source)
• 91% of customers say they’d give referrals. However, only 11% of salespeople ask for referrals (Source)
• 90% of C-suite execs say they never respond to cold calls (Source)
• 82% of B2B decision makers think sales reps aren’t prepared (Source)
• Customers don’t want to deal with salespeople until they are 70% down the path of the buying process (Source)
These facts alone state the obvious, we spend more time on search engines and social networks seeking out, researching and connecting with products we’re going to buy and people who we do want to do business with than we do on our phones.
When the time comes to actually speak to someone, it’s more likely that that person is going to be found through an association established on the internet and social media than it is through a cold call.
Note, this post orignially appeared on LinkedIn by Callum Stringfellow.