Cold calling vs. warm calling – why warm calling is better!

Jennifer Mancusi 2 minute read

Cold calls can leave a chill down our spine when people just don’t want to talk to us. That’s where warm calling comes in handy, but what is it, and how do we turn the heat up on those chilly cold calls?

What is Warm Calling?

This refers to outbound sales calls made to prospects who are already familiar with your company or brand. Warm calling takes place when a salesperson or a business development person is doing cold outreach, whatever that might be – email, phone calls, LinkedIn outreach – and the person on the other end is already familiar with the brand.

The key difference between warm and cold calling is that with warm calling, the prospect is not completely unfamiliar with your offering. They may have engaged with your marketing materials, read case studies, or listened to your company’s podcast. There is some baseline brand awareness and familiarity.

Cold calling becomes warm calling, when you’ve got good brand marketing in place and good positioning and messaging.

When a prospect recognizes your company name and has existing knowledge of your products or services, it classifies as a warm call.

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Warm Calling vs. Cold Calling

Cold calling involves outreach to prospects with no prior relationship or awareness of your brand. It is often seen as intrusive and salesy. Warm calling builds on existing brand familiarity to make the prospect more receptive.

Warm calling improves meeting rates because they are familiar with a business or not shouldn’t change the goal of that cold call. When a prospect already knows you, they are more likely to take a meeting.

Warm calling also enables sales reps to skip generic introductions and get right into substantive conversations about the prospect’s needs. Existing brand awareness lays the groundwork for a consultative discussion.

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Is There a Script?

Warm calling does not require a rigid script. Sell a need that the customer actually has. But the trick is to figure out who to reach out to who already knows the brand.

The more your marketing penetrates your market, the easier this becomes. People will likely have a base awareness at some point. Until then, consider reaching out to people who are likely to have heard of the brand – like if they attended a conference the brand sponsored, for example.

The conversation is an opportunity to demonstrate an understanding of the prospect’s requirements and explain how you can help.

That said, having an outline can still be useful when warm calling. This might include:

  • Brief reminder of who you are and what you offer
  • Reference to any previous touchpoints or brand impressions
  • Open-ended questions about current challenges
  • Tailored messaging around your value proposition
  • Next steps invitation

The familiarity of a warm call creates space for a natural, consultative conversation. An outline ensures you hit key points while maintaining a genuine back-and-forth.

And after all, remember that it’s essential that marketing and sales are aligned on messaging, the brand story, and what the talking points are.

In summary, warm calling leverages existing brand recognition to enable meaningful sales conversations. When backed by strong marketing, it can significantly improve prospect engagement and new customer acquisition.

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