An effective cold call script you can learn in 45 seconds

I recently downloaded a cold call script that was 5 pages long. The were all sorts of psychological tricks like “pattern interrupts” aimed at persuading people to schedule a meeting. It was complicated. Difficult to master. And felt “icky”.

Cold calling doesn’t need to be so complicated or slimy. And you don’t need to read a 120 page book on the subject.

Here’s an effective cold call script you can learn in 45 seconds that also feels good on the soul.


Sales PersonHi I’m Josh. I was hoping you could help me out for a moment.{Pause}

ProspectSure, what can I do for you? (This is generally the response I get when I use the opening above.)

One sentence about the problem you solve

Option 1

Sales PersonThanks John. Again I’m Josh with Sales Critique. I’m just calling to see if you’d be open to learning about an unusual but effective idea that might help you folks convert more demos into customers.

(Pause for as long as it takes to get a response.)

Option 2

Sales Person: Thanks John. Again I’m Josh with Sales Critique.What we do is help companies that sell SaaS solutions convert more demos into customers.(Pause and let it sink in.)

Sales PersonJohn, feel free to say no, but does this sound interesting?

That’s it.

Why should you give people permission to say no?

Behavioral Scientists Nicolas Gueguen and Alexandre Pascual studied how to overcome reactance. In the study the researchers dressed as panhandlers and asked for money. When the “panhandlers” ended their request with “you’re free to accept or refuse”, reactance was reduced and donations increased by 400%.

Make them an offer they can’t refuse

If you’re the VP of Sales it would be difficult to say no to an idea that might help you convert more demos into revenue.

What problem can you state in one elegant sentence that would make it difficult for your prospect to say “no” to?

What if a gatekeeper answers the phone?

Scripts to get around gatekeepers always made my soul feel bad. I even hate the word. Your intent shouldn’t be to “get around” anyone. Scripts that bypass gatekeepers assume that their perspective isn’t valuable. It also assumes that you know who the appropriate person is. Chances are you don’t (even if you read their LinkedIn profile).

Your intent is to determine if you might be able to help someone do something better. So rather than focusing on ways to get around gatekeepers ask for their help. Gatekeepers can help point you to the appropriate person or even tell you the reason why it may or may not be a fit.

Here’s a script that’s been effective for me:

SP: Hey Linda, this is Josh, maybe you could help me out for a moment?

Gatekeeper: “Sure. What can I do for you?

SP: I was on your website and noticed that you folks have been looking for a VP of Sales for awhile. My name is Josh with Bridges and that’s exactly the position we help SaaS companies like yours fill. Based on that I thought I’d start with Bob, but since I have you on the phone, would you be open to pointing me in the right direction?”

What’s next?

Everything that happens after this is about diffusing objections.