Do Cold-Calling and Cold-Email Work? Absolutely Not.
Never trust someone’s marketing system if they aren’t using it themselves.
Every day I get emails from people who want to sell me some marketing system, or funnel, or software, so they send me a cold email.
That’s no exaggeration. I have 103 cold emails sitting in my spam folder and that’s just from the past month.
When I get a cold email, I automatically hit “spam” without reading it. Here’s why.
Cold calling and cold emailing are not an efficient use of time. If someone’s selling an awesome “marketing system” or a new website or better SEO, but their own product isn’t helping them bring in enough clients/ customers to quit the cold calling, then obviously their solution isn’t that great.
This is especially true for marketing, obviously. but no matter the industry, if they are begging strangers to try their wares, the wares probably aren’t worth trying.
Marketing Promises Matter. Marketing Gimmicks? Not so much.
I promise my clients that my team can position their business in a way that increases their leads by 50% using a combination of market research, branding, an optimized website, targeted reviews and referrals and targeted (not cold) emails to clients who have agreed to receive them.
We call our system Whole Team Marketing because a) we like it if your entire team can contribute to the process and b) Small business owners who go through Whole Team Marketing get the experience of having a whole marketing team without having to hire one.
I know it works because I have a bunch of clients for whom it has worked. I know it works because I offer a full money back guarantee and not one customer has ever asked for their money back.
However, the reason I feel confident enough to offer that guarantee is because my system is already working for me. I use this exact process myself to get the number of leads I require.
Not this process + paid ads.
Not this process + an automated funnel of emails.
And certainly not this process plus <shudder> cold emails.
Marketing Fundamentals First
Of course, you can incorporate whatever little personal touches you want into your marketing program. For example, I post my blog on LinkedIn and I take on teaching and speaking engagements. That’s just me. I like doing those things and I see even better results from them. But I am not obligated to do them in order to keep the lights on around here.
If you love randomly talking to strangers who hate talking to you, then by all means add cold calling to your marketing practice. But don’t do it because it’s efficient or effective. It is not.
And if some marketer or developer or designer wants you to pay for a “method” that doesn’t work well enough for their own business, then run, run away.
I personally don’t use the marketing software Hubspot for this reason. I know a lot about Hubspot. I’ve tried it out. I really thought about incorporating it because it has many useful tools. Lots of my clients use it and think it’s great.
But I realized in their sales process that Hubspot doesn’t even work for Hubspot. You can tell.
If Hubspot worked well enough for Hubspot, they wouldn’t need to employ thousands of high-pressure sales people trying to push you to buy Hubspot.
The entire point of their software is to make lead generation miraculously easy. Shouldn’t that mean they don’t need a team of high pressure salespeople to drive leads?
Or to put it another way, if using their product also requires you to employ a squad of sales pros, is it really the product for you, a small business owner? Wouldn’t it just be cheaper to skip the Hubspot software and hire the sales team?
I’m not here to hate on Hubspot. I just think it’s super sus (as my 10-year-old would say) that they charge a premium for their own tools, but their own tools aren’t even enough for them.
My Friend Earl
I have another story about this from one of a friend and client who is a personal & executive coach. I’ll call him Earl.
When Earl first got started in coaching, he managed to get a meeting with a well-known wealthy professional who represented Earl’s ideal target audience.
This person politely listened to what Earl had to say about his methods. When Earl wrapped up his pitch, the man said, “You smell like cigarette smoke. Do you smoke?”
Shocked by what seemed like veering way off track, Earl was confused. But he said, “Yes, I do.”
The man said, “Why would I take advice on how to run my life from someone who is failing at running theirs?”
Earl had no good response. He had known for years he needed to quit smoking. He’d tried and failed.
He never considered what this repeated failure was saying about his ability to help others get their life together.
He quit. I don’t know if he quit that day or not, but I do know that he’s been smoke free for 30 years, and has been very successful in his practice.
Next time someone makes you a marketing offer that sounds tempting, make sure to see if they’re following their own advice.