I have a launched a very unique product for healthcare billing companies. It is unique in the way that it is operated. I am doing AdWords and SEO tactics, but do you think cold calling works? I am sure I have read many times that that's how some businesses find initial success?
If "cold calling" means random calling from a list that was purchased/found/stolen -- then I would propose it works like "even-a-stupid-squirrel-finds-a-nut-sometimes." (My apologies to squirrels)
But if "cold-calling" means only that "there was no introduction" but you did:
If you did all of those things and but there was still no request by the person to contact you first -- well, you will be a mile ahead of the people who sit passively behind their computer screen waiting for some online marketing campaign to generate leads for them.
Augment those calls with:
And over the course of your research into the target if you are able to identify a shared relationship and earn an introduction -- you hit gold. But don't wait for gold. Go. do. now..
Go do sales. Go start making calls. Learn from the rejections. Polish your pitch in the conversations.
It's quite a cultural thing, so take into account the location of the callee. In America, it seems to be acceptable, but cold calling in many countries in Europe is a big no-no.
Here in the UK, from experience, you're likely to get an aggressive response and many businesses put their numbers on do not call lists.
If the leads are all US I'm guessing from the responses it's acceptable.
Cold calling for a product like that is a low yeild affair.
We went to trade fairs and then worked from a Luke warm list initally, we then found someone who knew a lot of people in the industry and could open doors normally closed to us.
Personally I have more success talking to the techies of a company in a bar, then getting recommended up through from there. Talk with passion and knowledge whereever possible.
Cold Calling does work.....BUT so does walking 20 miles to work. I would not waste your time. I would sooner join forums and groups and try to make some friends. You can also try and partner w/ a company that has the customers you're looking for. If they do not offer the product, they may be open to some type of revenue share.
If you have a compelling value proposition, you can crisply articulate how you solve a specific problem, and you can accurately target prospective buyers who you know have that specific problem, then cold calling can work. Your "pitch" has to be short and immediately cut to the chase so that you get past the first urge to say "bye" or hit the delete button on voicemail. You must be prepared though for some "less than fun" rejections. Don't take it personally. Keep track of what worked and what didn't - keywords in the pitch, time of day you called, etc.
You may find it more effective to work with your existing client base and ask them for recommendations. You could offer them some form of incentive to help you. "Two months of free service for every new client you refer who signs a contract".
This should all be in the context of your broader marketing plan. What's your target market? what are the trigger events that make a prospect most likely to buy from you? What are the organizations that serve this market and how can you participate in these? What does your web site say that quickly tells a prospect how you solve their problem? How are you using Twitter and other social media to interact with your target prospects? Who are the industry analysts and press people who cover your industry and how can you reach them?
Key point - just as you do for other parts of your business - measure the time you're investing versus the return and see if it really is a good use of your time versus other approaches to growing your business.