Cold Calling Series – Key Data Capture


In this article we’re going to introduce to you a theme for one of your cold calling sessions with a group of fellow sales people.

 

If you missed the pre-requisite article then do give it a read here:

 

https://sales-icon.com/2019/04/04/cold-calling-series/

 

Typically we as sales people need certain key information from a buyer to map out the opportunity window.

 

This doesn’t apply to every sales situation out there but it does apply to most.

 

Opportunity Window

The opportunity window can be described as the time window where a buyer will consider other options to their incumbent supplier. Let me use an example to paint this picture clearly. I was recently working with an IT managed service provider whom had a couple key offerings, those were:

  • IT support
  • Telephone solutions
  • Mobile phones
  • Internet lines

 

Now for them the opportunity window was really key.

 

Why?

 

Well because more or less every potential customer would be tied into contracts for the offerings they provided. So instead of aimlessly attacking every prospect out there, the more effective approach was for them to target those prospects where their opportunity window had opened. They classed this usually as six to nine months before a contract was due for renewal. So they wanted to uncover from prospects when their contracts were due for their Mobile Phones or IT support etc.

 



Attacking Opportunity Windows

So that’s great, now we understand the opportunity window. The next thing we need to apply is a plan of attack for those prospects whom fall into their opportunity window. When a prospect hits this window, that’s the time where we as sales people need to focus on them. We need to build our prospecting momentum and add weight to our proposition. At minimum that’s the time where we need to be in front of the prospect in meetings, influencing and leading that sales process.

 

I’m not going to go into much depth on this part in this article, but for more help into building this momentum and attacking opportunity windows, have a read of the below articles:

 

How to Build More Momentum:

https://sales-icon.com/2019/02/13/how-to-close-more-sales-by-building-momentum/

 

How to Nurture Prospects:

https://sales-icon.com/2018/12/10/nurture-your-way-to-success-in-sales/

 

Consistency of activity creates sales:

https://sales-icon.com/2018/11/28/sales-come-from-consistency-of-activity/

 

Key Data Capture

The pre-requisite to all of this though is knowing when the opportunity window starts. That’s where the key data capture begins. Whatever your use case, industry, or business, you’ll all need some key data. Typically it is:

  • Renewal date of contract
  • Notice period
  • Typical time where they review suppliers

 

I can’t tell you what your key data is, it may be alike the above or alternate to this. So spend a minute or two now just brainstorming what the key data is that you require in order to identify an opportunity window.

 

Now you’ve done that let’s jump into the game.

 

Key Data Capture Game

All we’re looking for in this game for your cold calling sessions is for the participants to find out as much key data as they can. They simply need to call as many prospects as they can to find out the key data you require.

 

Points Scoring

The same as every game we recommend for cold calling sessions, make it more competitive with a points scoring system and an incentive for those whom score the most points over a couple sessions using this game.

 

The points system we’ve used historically mimics the below but tailor this to your use case:

  • Five points for every piece of key data captured
  • Twenty points for every meeting booked

 

Why Use This Game

It’s simple really, it gives us the information we need to be able to effectively target our prospects at the right time. The more experienced we get at asking these types of questions and finding out this key information the better we become at sales.

 

So much time is wasted by sales people when they prospect businesses whom are outside of their opportunity windows. For instance if a sales person makes multiple calls and emails etc to a prospect whom is one year into their five year contract then this is simply a waste of their time.

 

So this game should encourage sales people to be conscious of the opportunity window and how this effects the sales process. Moreover if executed well it will arm them with the key data they need as to when they should target the businesses, and when they should increase their prospecting momentum with that business.

 

Please do let us know how this technique works for you, we’d love to hear about it.

 

Do look out for our future posts around cold calling techniques, games and incentives.

 

If you could also do us a favour and follow the blog, we promise it’ll just notify of future articles which maybe valuable to read.

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