The debate about the effectiveness of cold calling vs. cold emailing isn’t going to be resolved any time soon. Any seasoned sales professional has their own opinion about which channel works better and plenty of arguments to back it up. Whether you prefer cold calling or cold emailing is irrelevant – you need to do both for best results. Let’s explore the pros and cons of each so you can figure out the best way to include these activities in your sales process.

Making a Positive First Impression

Before we explore the differences between cold calling and cold emailing, let’s think about what you’re trying to accomplish. The overall goal to keep in mind when cold calling or cold emailing is making a positive first impression on a prospect. 

First impressions are important because they’re so memorable. If you get things right with a prospect from the start, the door opens to further interaction. Your objectives are to build rapport with your prospect and get them to agree to receiving more information from you. Pay attention to the information prospects give to you during the conversation or through their behavior and let it inform the flow of communication.

Pros and Cons of Cold Calling

Cold calling is a classic outreach technique that has existed for decades longer than the internet. Despite the advances in technology that have changed the way we do business, cold calling continues to be quite popular. Let’s examine why cold calling remains a favorite way for sales professionals to make contact with prospects.

Pros of Cold Calling

In a time when video conferencing burnout is on the rise and inboxes are overfull, a good old-fashioned phone call can feel like a refreshing change from the norm. It’s more intimate and candid on the part of the prospect because the responses to the conversation are happening in the moment. Provided the sales rep approaches the call as a chance to learn more about the needs of the buyer, a prospect will put their guard down long enough to engage authentically. 

It’s impossible to hold a conversation when you’re distracted. Cold calling is unique because it forces both parties to focus on what the other person is saying. You can’t scroll away or delete a phone conversation.

A phone call lends itself to genuine personalization because the salesperson can ask questions about the prospect and instantly follow up with information that is useful and relevant. The distance between customer satisfaction and customer delight is much shorter on a cold call.

For the sales rep, there is an opportunity to control the conversation and predict the flow of it by sticking with a tested, flexible script. After you have logged a few hours of cold calls with your ideal prospects, you’ll notice patterns that emerge in the responses given to the questions you ask. This will make it easier for you to anticipate how prospects will respond on future calls, which will empower you to be more confident with each call.

the intimacy and control of cold calling

Cons of Cold Calling

Cold calling has a mixed reputation because some people associate cold calling with pushy and inconsiderate salespeople who refuse to take “no” for an answer. For sales reps who are trying to do their jobs, cold calling represents the anxiety-inducing threat of rejection and failure. Whether you’re on the receiving end or on the dispensing end, cold calling has the potential to make you feel awkward.

Cold Calling: The Verdict

Cold calling is a great method for creating an intimate and tailored feeling for the prospect during the outreach process. With the right approach, a cold call can feel like a delightful experience rather than an unwelcome interruption. The sales rep who gains experience with cold calling learns how to control the flow of the conversation and how to easily predict and respond to questions and objections from the prospect.

Pros and Cons of Cold Emailing

Cold emailing is a powerful outreach technique that is loved because of its scaleability. When you understand the do’s and don’ts of cold emailing, you can leverage this method to add serious oomph to your sales cadence. Let’s explore what makes cold emailing so appealing.

Pros of Cold Emailing

Saying that time and attention are limited resources is an understatement in the modern workplace. Your prospects encounter a seemingly endless stream of marketing every day in every direction. The inbox is one of the last places where prospects still have the ability to zoom in and focus on one message at a time. A well-written email that holds your prospect’s attention with useful information is a fantastic way to cut through the marketing noise from competitors.

For the sales rep who wants to pump up outreach without being chained to a phone, nothing beats cold emailing. Thanks to chrome extensions that help you build out your leads list and email service providers that give you the ability to send tens or hundreds of emails in a single go, you can get in front of multiple prospects in less time than you would by using any other method. 

Split testing is one of the most exciting things about cold emailing. You can use split testing to refine your emails based on the data you receive from recipients. Use the most effective emails as templates for future outreach to make communication even easier. Proven email templates make it possible for your team to be consistent with your marketing messaging without the need to reinvent the wheel.

You can see exactly when a prospect opens your email using software that tracks opens. Understand which content is most appealing by observing which links get clicked and which ones get ignored. If you want to increase the odds that you’ll start things off on the right foot, you can use tools like Crystal Knows to gain insights into the communication styles of your prospects, so that you can speak their language and build trust.

Follow-up is one of the most important activities of a cold email campaign. Unfortunately, it can be time-consuming and hard to do one by one when you’re sending mass cold emails. The good news is that you can automate follow-up, too. You can trigger an email to go out to the prospects after an appropriate amount of time has passed or in response to the behavior of the recipient. Engaging in follow-up is far more important than how you choose to do it. Try both methods of automated follow-up and look at the data to learn which one is most effective for engaging with your prospects.

Cons of Cold Emailing

The biggest downside of cold emailing is that, if you aren’t careful, your emails can end up in the trash or be flagged as spam. You can combat this problem with regular verification and validation of your email list and by improving your email copywriting skills.

It can be difficult to get personalization right when you’re sending multiple cold emails at once. Even when you’re sending cold emails one at a time, you won’t get the instant feedback you would get with a verbal conversation that lets you know if the conversation is going well or if it’s time to switch gears. 

Do you have a hard time being ignored? If you send a cold email, it’s possible that you’ll hear nothing but crickets. Your prospect may open your email, read it, and have every intention of replying, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen. Without the benefit of dialogue, you’ll only be able to guess what went wrong.

scaleability and measurability of cold emailing

Cold Emailing: The Verdict

Cold emailing is a busy salesperson’s best friend when it comes to outreach volume. There are multiple tools that make it easy to collect data on the effectiveness of your email campaigns so that you can refine your process. Cold emails are easy to send, and they’re also easy for prospects to ignore if they are poorly written. The best cold emailing campaigns aren’t a one-and-done activity. You must plan for and execute a follow-up sequence that invites your prospect to slow down and engage with you.

Why You Should Do Both Cold Calling and Cold Emailing

Now that we’ve examined the strengths and weaknesses of cold calling and cold emailing, we can finally answer the question of which method works better for connecting with customers. The answer is, of course, both. You need both methods to have the most impact according to the data.

Cold calling and cold emailing are effective for different reasons. With cold calls, you can get instant responses from prospects and create a personalized experience for your prospect that feels natural. 

With cold emails, you can connect with more prospects in less time and you don’t have to worry that your message is interrupting your prospect’s day because they can read it at their convenience.

You can combine the strengths of both methods by sending a cold email first, then making a cold call. Your prospect will feel more comfortable answering your call if they recognize your name from their inbox. Using this strategy gives the prospect multiple opportunities to respond to your bid to connect. 

Tips for Effective Cold Calling and Cold Emailing

Cold calling and cold emailing are a dream team when it comes to outreach because they allow you to initiate contact with your prospects from multiple angles. Whether you choose to engage in cold calling, cold emailing, or both (please do both!), you’ll be much more successful when you remember the following tips.

Here are some other tips for effective outreach:

  • Ensure you’re targeting the right people at the right time.
  • Use templates and scripts to keep the conversation flowing in the right direction.
  • Plan to follow-up multiple times with your prospect.
  • Approach the outreach as an opportunity to provide valuable information to your prospect and to learn more about their needs.
  • Use the right tools to power up your efforts.
  • End every conversation with a call to action that lets your prospect know what to do next.

Abiding by these principles will make your outreach strategy far more enjoyable for you and your prospects.