Cold calling scripts are a crucial component of your lead generation efforts. They point your SDR team in the right direction, allowing for personalization and elaboration while steering the conversation towards setting a meeting.

 

However, It’s important to note that your sales development reps aren’t just script-readers; they are storytellers. The better they can paint the picture for their prospect, the more interest they will generate. This is true in all b2b sales but especially pertinent in the well-saturated software industry, where you are competing against a variety of companies to make your solution stand out.

 

In order to paint this picture, your SDR team needs to identify and answer these important questions:

  • What are the common pain points?
  • How do we solve them?
  • How do we differentiate ourselves from the competitors?

Take a look at this cold calling script template we built for Mitel (one of our large software clients):

 

Hi Prospect, My name is ________ and I’m calling with Mitel. How are you doing today?

 

Do you oversee business communications or phone systems for your company?

 

I’m reaching out today because we would like to schedule a few minutes sometime next week to discuss Mitel’s cloud offerings for your business. Mitel has been named a leader four years in a row in the Gartner Magic Quadrant Report for Unified Communications.

 

You can give your employees one place to connect with each other, customers and suppliers on your desktop, mobile, and tablet. It’s all about collaboration, boosting productivity, improving customer service, and helping employees to work smarter.

 

When is a good day for you to further discuss how Mitel could assist you in moving forward with the cloud or any UC solution?

Breakdown of a Colding Calling Script for Software Sales

Before we go any further, we want to make sure this is clear: There is no perfect cold calling script. It’s up to your team’s discretion to create and evolve your cold calling script to meet with your business goals and align with your prospect’s needs.

 

With that in mind, this is how EBQ breaks down a cold calling script:   

  1. Introduce yourself and your company
  2. Validate the right person
  3. State the reason for calling
  4. Explain the problem you are solving
  5. Ask for a meeting

Step 1. Introduce yourself and establish credibility

The first thing you want to do when your prospect picks up the phone is quickly introduce yourself. To build that trust and rapport early on in a software sales call, you need to establish yourself as a credible company and a friendly personality.

Hi Prospect, My name is ________ and I’m calling with Mitel. How are you doing today?

Step 2. Confirm the right person

Next, you want to make sure that the person you are talking to is the right person. You most likely have gaps in your database, and it’s important to validate that you are talking to the right decision-maker, before moving forward in your pitch.

 

Take a look at the highlighted portion of this script that our appointment setting team used for Mitel:

Do you oversee business communications or phone systems for your company?

Notice how brief the intro is. If the answer to this question is yes, you most likely have the right person to hear your elevator pitch. If they aren’t the right person, you can use them as a springboard to finding the right person by asking for the right person’s contact information(make sure to get their phone and email to create a new contact in your CRM).

 

Optional: Another question you could follow up with is: do you have a few mins to discuss…? Though this isn’t crucial for appointment setting, it shows that you are empathetic to their busy schedule and want to make sure it’s a good time to briefly chat. You have interrupted them and should be cognizant that even though they are the right person, they may be running to a meeting or leaving for vacation, and calling back at a better time for them can be quite effective.  

Step 3. Clearly state your purpose

Now that you have established who you are, you need to quickly explain why you are there and what you are looking for.

 

For Mitel, our SDR’s quickly explained our reason for calling today and briefly introduced the company as a whole.

I’m reaching out today because we would like to schedule a few minutes sometime next week to discuss Mitel’s cloud offerings for your business. Mitel has been named a leader four years in a row in the Gartner Magic Quadrant Report for Unified Communications.

In the second sentence, we are establishing Mitel as a leader, four years in a row in the Gartner Magic Quadrant Report. At this point, we know that the person we are talking to is in charge of business communications. As an IT professional, they may or may not have heard of Mitel before, but probably have heard of the famous Gartner report. This shows the power of name-dropping, establishing credibility and conveying your brand as a trustworthy source.

Step 4. Quickly show the problems you are solving

Now that you have given some context to your phone call and who you are with, you can start to dive into the problems your business is solving. Remember, focus on the outcomes of your product, not the features themselves!

 

For Mitel we used these sentences:

You can give your employees one place to connect with each other, customers and suppliers on your desktop, mobile, and tablet. It’s all about collaboration, boosting productivity, improving customer service, and helping employees to work smarter.

Step 5. Ask for a meeting

The final step is to go for the close. With this being the goal of the phone call, you want to make sure you are always steering the conversation towards that direction.

 

For example:

When is a good day for you to further discuss how Mitel could assist you in moving forward with the cloud or any UC solution?

Now that you showed the outcomes of working with your company, you need to make sure you have set the expectation of what the next step is. Make sure to ask them for a day that works instead of telling them your salesperson’s availability.

 

*SDR Pro-tip: It’s best to have your salesperson’s and your calendar in front of you while you ask for a meeting. This helps avoid double booking and having to reschedule appointments on your end.

Cold Calling for Software Sales Best Practices

Now that we have broken down the components of a cold calling script, we can dive deeper into some cold calling script best practices to keep your prospect engaged (and your sales pipeline full).

Grab their attention by leading in strong

One thing we have noticed over the years is that software companies often try to focus on too many value propositions in hopes of hitting on a pain point. This shotgun approach in a cold calling scenario doesn’t work as it doesn’t generate interest quick enough. You have to have a clear focus and differentiation that cuts and catches the attention of your prospect in order to keep them on the line and set an appointment.

 

We recommend you choose one topic to leverage as your main value proposition to go all in on it. The narrower the scope, the more engaged the prospect will be. We have found that companies will always have greater success if they focus on one point versus many.

 

Take a look at this poor cold calling example:

Hey I am calling with [IT services company], we can do all the IT for your company… [click]

And compare it to this better and more targeted example:

“…we can do all your IT, but really we specialize in helping businesses with the cloud infrastructure. We partner with Microsoft and Google…

So why did this second script work more effectively? Even though both companies can manage IT for your company, the second script focused in on cloud infrastructure and was able to differentiate themselves accordingly. They also name drop Microsoft and Google in the same breath to build trust and credibility.

Focus on the outcomes, not the features

This is true of any cold calling outreach but can is especially prevalent in b2b software sales. Once your R&D team has built out a new product or application, it’s easy to get stuck in the trap of using the new and shiny features as the main value proposition. But again, remember that to tell your story most effectively, you should speak to the outcomes of using your product and how you are solving pain points. Then once you have hit on the pain points, you can elaborate on what features drive that value.

 

Take a look at these two scripts we used for BigCommerce in their early days (read the full case study):

Example script #1 – feature-focused

Bigcommerce is a leading provider of e-commerce solutions to help elevate online sales and revenue.  We offer a multitude of features like built-in marketing tools such as SEO, a mobile-optimized store, as well as an abandoned cart saver that converts an average of 15% of abandoned carts to sales.

Example script #2 – More outcome-focused

Hi, this is …. with Bigcommerce. We are the leader in e-commerce for small to medium-sized businesses. We enable our clients to easily launch professional online stores in hours and provide a variety of tools such as SEO, a mobile-optimized store, as well as an abandoned cart saver to help drive revenue growth.

There is a stark contrast between the two as the second one speaks to the individual pain points of launching an online store and less about the features they offer. In the second script, we start with the pain point, then dive into the supporting features that bring us to that outcome.

Keep it aligned

You want to make sure your message aligns with your persona and their vertical. When you are telling the story, be sure to use words and imagery that they can relate to instead of using industry jargon and marketing buzz-words. Additionally leveraging well-known companies in their industry will you help you go further by establishing trustworthiness.

Ask open-ended questions

If the pain points are sticking with a certain client and you need to go off-script, having a list of secondary questions can help you steer the direction towards a close. Be careful with how to phrase the questions to give them room to elaborate more than just “yes or “no.”

 

Here are some of the discovery questions we used for Webroot:

What are you using now for endpoint protection?

How many endpoints do you currently have?

Asking a client how or why or what can help you to proactively guide the conversation toward the pain points that are more relevant to their needs. At this point of the conversation, you can keep quiet, listen, and see what information they give you to.

 

Leading questions are an effective way to gather information that you can use in your sales conversations. Once you know that there is some genuine interest with a particular prospect, your SDR team can learn more about their environment and business goals and then annotate these points in the lead summary for their sales team.

Evolve Your Cold Calling Scripts

Finally, don’t forget the importance of receiving feedback and evolving your cold calling scripts. We tell clients time and time again how important it is to not just read the script.

 

The script is used as a basic foundation but should not be read verbatim. As an SDR gets to know the value proposition of your company and what pain points resonate with prospects, they will be able to use their own judgment to go off-script, ask leading questions and drive the conversation in the right direction.

 

For example, when selling an application software, we realize that people don’t care about the backup functionality we developed but do like the ability to sign on from multiple devices. We are able to take this feedback from the client and refine our cold calling script to resonate better with our new prospects.

Conclusion

Writing a cold calling script for software can be an arduous task. Even with over a decade of experience, we know that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all script. However, what we have been able to develop after years of testing and optimizing, is a proven approach to our script writing that has allowed us to drive sales pipeline growth with positive ROI to a variety of software companies.

 

We hope we were able to help you navigate the waters of software sales development to share your story in a fast-paced industry.

 

For more information about appointment setting and cold calling scripts, visit our ultimate guide to b2b appointment setting. If you are looking to drive more efficient pipeline growth, get in touch with EBQ today.

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