Selling mortgages is not rocket science: Cold calling for dummies 101Dave Hershmancold calling, sales, relationship development, contact list
Sales 101. We have been taught again and again that the key to
being successful in sales is the development of relationships. If
this is true, then why do sales trainers and sales managers spend
so much time trying to teach cold calling skills?
Some believe that we are proving our mettle by demonstrating an
ability to "beat the streets." There is another way to describe
this professional practice--stupidity.
Why is cold calling stupid? Simply stated, if we have to utilize
our most precious resource--time--in an effort to meet people for
the first time over and over again, we will be running on a
treadmill for the rest of our lives. As a matter of fact, the
practice of cold calling may be a major factor as to why the
profession of sales is a revolving door. If you look at sales
personnel in almost every field, there is a major issue with
If cold calling is not the way to succeed in sales, what is the
alternative? Call people you know! Ask yourself before you pick up
the phone to cold call, "Have I contacted every one I know in order
to achieve my sales goals?" We believe that most people have at
least 300 personal contacts within the following groups:
•Personal--friends, relatives, neighbors
•Associations--religious organizations, civic associations,
•Previous customers--from present job or a previous place of
•Previous prospects--contacts you were not able to sell in
•Co-workers--from present job or a previous place of
•Professionals--doctors, CPA's, attorneys
•Vendors--those who call on your industry and/or your
I challenge you to sit down at a computer and come up with a
personal contact list using this format. I believe that when you
have finished a thorough exercise, the estimation of 300 contacts
will be conservative. If you previously did not have a working
database, you just started one. If you did have a working database,
you have made it stronger.
However, the question remains--if you have 300 or more personal
contacts, why would you call someone you do not know in order to
sell? One common response to this question is that you do not want
to sell those you know. This response represents a type of call
reluctance and needs to be dealt with at a different time.
Many assume that their personal contacts will automatically
refer them business when it is available. This is a very false
assumption. Your contacts do not sit around and think about who
does what and act accordingly. They usually act under the "path of
least resistance theory." This means that the person who contacted
them most recently is likely to be the conduit for new business.
The way to interfere with this process is to develop close
relationships. Yes, sales really is about relationships!
Top producers in every field of sales obtain the majority of
their business from referrals. Their greatest source of referrals
is those with whom they have developed a close
relationship--especially previous customers. If you have not kept
in touch with those you have served in the past, you will probably
start the sales process from scratch every time you have to make
another sale. Talk about a treadmill!
Next time, we will take a closer look at these personal
contacts. Whether you are selling real estate, mortgages, or
insurance, the concept will work. If you are not getting enough
personal referrals and you are wasting time cold calling, then we
suggest you pay close attention to future issues of The Mortgage
Press. We just might help stop cold calling for dummies...
Dave Hershman is a leading author and a top speaker for the
mortgage industry, and is a partner of LendingProfessional.com. His
newsletters are used by Mortgage Brokers to provide value to
previous customers, financial planners, Realtors, and more. For
newsletter samples, call (800) 581?5678, or visit on the Web at www.hershmangroup.com.