You may have found yourself in many of the same scenarios and situations that you’ve watched in Hollywood’s most infamous cold calling scenes. These feelings and frustrations that the characters are going through are universal to all sales professionals. Most, if not all, are uncomfortably too relatable. Nevertheless, the sales lessons that you learn from many of these cold calling scenes are applicable to a wide variety of sales experiences and offer valuable sales insights.
It’s important to consider how each scene portrays sales professionals and the behavioral tendencies they exhibit in order to overcome common problems in the world of sales.
One of the most important aspects of selling as a sales professional is making your cold calls. The process can be difficult if sales professionals fail to develop best practices.
These 4 cold calling scenes from movies and tv shows will inspire you to make the sale and become more efficient.
Develop Proper Phone Call Etiquette – The Office
It’s important to keep in mind that sales professionals make several cold calls during their workday. Going through a multitude of customer objections can be a frustrating endeavor as each call is different with its own rhythm and objections. While this hilarious cold calling scene from The Office should not be taken at face value, the message here is that it pays to be respectful with customers during sales calls regardless of how frustrating it may become.
Practice introducing yourself in a calm and collected manner. Deliver your pitch with clarity and speak loudly but at an appropriate volume. Take a cue from Dwight (played by Rainn Wilson) and ensure you don’t lose your cool during difficult sections of the call.
Set Yourself Apart From Your Competitors – Boiler Room
One of the most frustrating aspects of making cold calls is conveying the value of your product or service to customers. There are plenty of competitors competing for business. In this cold calling scene from Boiler Room, Seth (played by Giovanni Ribisi) is at home eating breakfast when he receives a lackluster cold call from a newspaper sales rep who he immediately turns down. We see again in this sales scene that the sales rep does not have a developed sales strategy for dealing with rejection.
Being the professional sales rep that he is, Seth attempts to guide the weary cold caller with some solid sales coaching advice and asks him to try again. Notice how the cold caller sets his product apart from the rest of the competition by outlining the specific benefits and features of his newspaper (more photographs than any other newspaper and the most reliable delivery service).
Highlight your unique selling points when making your sales calls to ensure your product or service stands out from the competition.
Respectfully Educate Your Clients – JOBS
Does your prospect understand your product or service? One of the hardest aspects of making cold calls is making sure your customers understand what it is you’re selling. In this cold calling scene from Jobs, Steve Jobs (played by Ashton Kutcher) is having a hard time explaining the details of the Apple Computer to prospective investors.
Imagine trying to explain something as innovative as a personal computer during that time period. Unpack the details of your product or service by demonstrating how it can mitigate their specific problems or concerns but ensure you don’t talk down to them if they miss or don’t understand something.
Try and paint a picture with your words and explain your product or service in a way that is easy to digest. Ask your prospect about their knowledge of your product or service on a scale of 1 to 10. This will give you some clear understanding of how in-depth you need to be with your presentation or if the call requires another person for decision-making. Come up with a strategy to explain your product or service simply and in less than a minute.
Be More Efficient by Staying Positive– Pursuit of Happiness
Effort and dedication are the keys to making your calls and increasing your potential for making a sale. In this cold calling scene from The Pursuit of Happiness, Chris Gardner (played by Will Smith) shows how having a focused and determined positive mental attitude can help sales professionals be more efficient. He maintains a polite tone-of-voice during his sales calls and treats the Gatekeeper with respect even after getting rejected. The majority of sales calls will take you to the decision-makers secretary or assistant, so it is important to treat them with as much respect as you would the CEO.