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Four Tips to Get the Appointment Set

When making cold calls, it is important to focus on the main goal of getting the appointment set.  We can easily get hung up on trying to sell or close the deal, but there is no real selling that can be done during a cold call as a cold call is will only really be between two to five minutes.  The call may go longer than that, but if that happens you have evolved past the cold call and moved to the first conversation.

In many cases, the prospect will not be available to talk more at the time of the cold call and there are some benefits to ending the call so that we can regroup and get back with them when they are more prepared for our conversation.  For this reason, we must focus the goal of moving the prospect to the first conversation and setting the appointment.  Below are tips to help improve results with this.


1. Build Rapport

Even though a cold call is very short, it can be very helpful to do what you can in that brief period of time to build some level of rapport with the sales prospect.  You don’t have a ton of time to work with but there are a few very key things that we can do and avoid doing to improve the level of rapport when trying to get the appointment set.

If we show respect for the prospect’s time at the beginning of the call and confirm they are available for our call, we can show that not only do we respect their time, but also that we understand them and how hectic their job is.  This is an example of a minor tactic to build rapport.


2. Qualify

Qualifying the prospect during the cold call can help with effectiveness when working on appointment setting.  Not only will going through some qualification questions help you to ensure that the meeting makes sense for you, but it can also communicate to the prospect that it will make sense for them when they give you the answers that you are looking for.



3. Build Interest

In order to get the prospect to commit time on their schedule for your appointment, you have to trigger some level of interest.  A good way to do this is to build your qualifying questions so that they uncover some level of pain.  When you uncover pain, you should then provide some very brief details on how you can help to decrease that pain.  This can begin the building interest process and help to get the appointment set.


4. Move to Schedule First Conversation

Once you have qualified and triggered some interest, it is a good time to bring the cold call to an end and try to move the prospect to a first conversation.  A good way to begin this transition is to acknowledge that you have called the prospect out of the blue and propose to get back together at a scheduled time to discuss in more detail.

If the conversation is going well and the prospect is available at the time of the cold call, the first conversation could happen right then.  But if not, that is a great time to set the appointment.


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Launch Pad Solutions provides cold call training helping sales pros to improve results.

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This article was published on Sunday 31 July, 2011.
Back to main topic: Appointment Setting
Five Tips to Improve Appointment Making
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How to Set Appointments

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