14 reasons why cold calling has become ineffective

Cold calling used to be the favourite tactic of salespeople. Get a big list of phone numbers and call people who might be interested in your products. But the problem is that you don’t know if people really are interested. It’s a numbers game, and it frustrates a whole lot of people.  

For the salespeople, it is difficult, because you know you are calling people who have no idea about your product. For the people, it is annoying for the same reason. You are calling people who have no idea about your business or the products you sell. This means that you are calling people who might not be interested in your products at all. 

The way people buy products has changed, cold calling used to work, but it doesn’t anymore. People want to be educated and understand your product and what you can offer. They don’t want you to call them, disturb their day, and talk about something they don’t have any idea of. 

Here are 14 reasons as to why cold calling doesn’t work well anymore. 

  1. According to a study by the Keller Research Center, only 1% of cold calls eventually turn into an appointment 
  2. Cold calling is not sustainable. It can take one person hundreds of calls to find one person to market to. 
  3. Cold calls can leave your business with a bad reputation. Pushy and annoying cold calls will be talked about. Maybe even on Social Media, this can leave your brand damaged 
  4. It’s hard to reach decision makers.  Businesses are now well aware that cold calls happen, reaching decision makers is becoming near impossible. 
  5. 9 out of 10 decision makers don’t even answer the phone anymore if they know it’s a cold call. 
  6. 74% of buyers who make a purchase choose the seller who genuinely adds value to the conversation. This adds time pressure but does increase the success rate. Cold callers rarely add value. 
  7. B2B buyer leaders start their purchasing journey with a referral. As mentioned in point 5, barely any decision maker answers the phone for a cold call. This means you are missing most decision makers. 
  8. Good sales need case studies. Cold callers have a hard time providing case studies and other relevant information. 
  9. Technology has caught up. A phone or laptop only gets you so far with cold calls. Another technology has taken over. Marketing automation, content management systems are now all working. Cold callers also have other technological advancements to think of. Caller ID’s, number blocking and “don’t call me lists” are all popular now. 
  10. It’s hard to educate customers over the phone. Point 8 talks about case studies, but even educating a customer is hard over the phone. You can’t demonstrate the product or proof that the product can do what you claim. Cold callers also have scripts they run by, so there isn’t always in-depth product knowledge. 
  11. A cold caller doesn’t know what questions a prospect will ask. Whereas a social seller, someone with a good Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system will have a lot of knowledge. 
  12. Salespeople will get an appointment sooner if they have a connection with the buyer. Cold callers, as the name implies, don’t have this connection. 
  13. B2B E-commerce will top $1.1 trillion in the U.S alone by 2020. Cold callers are missing out on this big part of the market. 
  14. The average cold caller only makes 2 attempts to call a client. Whereas studies have shown that nowadays users need multiple touch points over multiple channels. 

Of course, we from DigiKat are inbound marketing experts so we believe in our own methodology. But there is a case to be made for the Inbound methodology. It touches on most points that make cold calling so ineffective.  

If you would like to find out more about the effectiveness of Inbound marketing. Reach out to us on any of our social media channels! 



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