10 Alternatives to Cold Calling That Work For B2B Businesses

By: Jack Reamer |
 November 1, 2022 |
Did you know that the average success rate of cold calling is between 1 and 3%

And that 80% of those calls go to voicemail.

It’s no wonder it takes a specific type of sales rep, with a strong backbone to handle cold calling day in and day out. 

But if you’re tired of ending up in someone’s voicemail, or would like a higher success rate than just 3%, you might want to add some of the following outreach methods to your marketing strategy

This isn’t to say that you should give up on cold calling, but it just means that there are other methods of lead generation that might yield faster results. 

(But if you would like to skip the reading, hop on a free 15-minute consultation call with us. We’ll bring you 20+ sales-qualified leads per month using ultra-personalized LinkedIn + email outreach, or your money back.) 

1. Linkedin outreach

As a Linkedin lead generation agency, we can vouch for the success of using this platform for finding new leads.  

With cold calling, you never know if you’re disturbing someone when they are in the middle of something, but at least with an outreach message, the prospect can read it, reply as soon as possible and book a call when it’s convenient for them. 

Does Linkedin outreach work? 

Well, last year alone we generated close to 5000 qualified leads for our clients. (We haven’t calculated our stats for this year yet, but we are guessing that it’s more.) 

At Salesbread we guarantee 1 qualified lead per day and often generate 25+ leads per month for each client. 

How do we manage to get these results? 

It’s simple.

  1. Build a super-refined list of our client’s ideal target audience
  2.  Write ultra-personalized messages that start conversations
  3. Follow up consistently and ask for a booked meeting

Our average positive reply rate is 39% and our average acceptance rate is 45%. 

If your business hasn’t tried Linkedin outreach yet, you need to add it to your prospecting strategies

We find that if you have the right list of prospects and write ultra-personalized messages, you can get your first lead within 48 hours after launching your campaign. 

Here are some of the replies that we have gotten in the past:

BUT

Before hiring an agency, try it out for yourself. If you can manage to get 1 or 2 leads from Linkedin within 2 weeks it’s worth it. 

How do you do it? 

Build 2 lists of prospects that you would like to reach out to. 

Even if each list only has 100 people on it, great. 

But make sure that these prospects are an ideal fit for your product/service. You can do this by seeing which companies have purchased from you within the last 6 months. 

Build a look-a-like list by checking for common patterns. 

And ask yourself what “do my current buying customers have in common?”

  • Are they in the same location? USA? Europe? Asia? 
  • Do they sell a specific type of tech? 
  • Are they all in the same industry? 
  • How many employees do they have?
  • Have they recently been funded?
  • Do they use the same CRM tool?

By finding patterns, you will be able to target similar businesses.

Next, you have to research each prospect on the list and write ultra-personalized messages, specifically for that prospect. 

We use the CCQ method, which you can read about here.

Then you can write 2 sets of messages and send them to your various lists; see which messages perform the best in your lead generation strategy

(Need some inspiration? Here are some templates for you to try.)

You will then need to ask your prospects for a booked meeting. Remember to follow up between 3 and 5 times, if they haven’t replied to you. 

For an in-depth look at Linkedin outreach strategy read this article: https://salesbread.com/the-best-done-for-you-lead-generation-service/

2. Cold Email Outreach

Cold email outreach is similar to the above Linkedin sales strategy

  1. Build a list of potential customers who will say yes to your product, by using the same principles above.
  2. Write short personalized emails that are to the point.
  3. Ask for a meeting and follow-up.

The important thing to remember with email campaigns is to not spam your prospects.

Don’t send hundreds of emails per day. 

The reason for this is that you could develop a bad sender reputation and have your emails delivered to spam. 

If you end up in the spam folder, it doesn’t matter how perfect your personalization is, because, for every 12,500,000 emails sent, spammers receive one reply. So you don’t want your emails to end up in spam. 

We suggest using the following email cadence below: 

Wait 3 days between each follow-up email. This ensures that you don’t annoy your prospects and that your messages aren’t labelled as spam.

At Salesbread we use both cold email and Linkedin outreach in our prospecting strategy.

We find that the combination leads to great success because if you can’t reach a prospect via Linkedin, you will probably get hold of them through email.

If you’re interested in becoming a cold email guru, check out our email masterclass.

3. Trade Shows & Networking events

Now that Covid has finally subsided, trade shows and networking events are back. Networking events are great for meeting new people or learning new things when it comes to business. 

Why should you consider trade shows?

  • You can meet new people and create new business opportunities
  • By showing your presence, you build trust and retain customers. 
  • Personal networking can be used as a door opener
  • You can also get direct feedback on your products
  • Trade Shows also allow you to discover industry trends
  • Networking events can also be motivating for your employees because they can learn a lot from experts in the field and meet new people. You might even be able to win over new employees.

An example of a business expo to attend is The Small Business Expo held across the United States is America’s biggest B2B trade show and networking event.  

The show is also held virtually if you would prefer something that isn’t in person.

If you are interested in a list of trade shows that will be held across the US, you can go to Tradefest. They list various shows being held for this year and next.

4. Social Media Marketing

Another cold-calling alternative is making use of social media platforms such as:

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Linkedin
  • Twitter

Why?

Well, stats show that the average consumer spends 2.5 hours + on social media every single day. 

So if you haven’t tried social media marketing, now might be the time. This means that you have close to 3 hours a day to interact with prospects. 

Even if you are B2B, social media can increase brand awareness and create social proof of your service or product. 

By asking happy customers to leave positive reviews on your social media page, it helps others trust in your product. 

You can also use paid ads that pop up on users’ feeds.

The great thing is that you can target your ideal audience when it comes to ads by using demographics, location, and even specific keywords in some instances. 

Below is an example of an Instagram ad for Mondaydotcom.

But besides stagnant ads, you can also make use of videos and white papers to promote your business. 
Social media marketing is also a cost-effective way to generate more leads, as you could either run campaigns yourself or hire a freelancer to manage your platform. When it comes to paid ads, you can set your budget as well.  

According to Sociallybuzz, you can expect to pay a social media marketing agency between $500 and $15,000 per month depending on many factors. And if you opt for a freelance professional you can expect to pay between $200 and $750. 

For social media marketing to be successful make sure to use eye-catching imagery, interesting content, and videos that add value to the viewer.

Also, post consistently with strong CTAs.

But it’s also imperative you choose the right platform. 

For example, Linkedin might be a better option for selling your SaaS product than Tik Tok.

5. Content marketing

Almost 2 years ago Salesbread started a consistent content marketing strategy.

Basically, our strategy was to post between1 & 2 articles a week on our website. We also made use of SEO in all our articles. 

Because of this, we have had quite a few articles show up on page 1 of Google. 

Why is this important? 

Because stats show that 75% of scrollers will never go past page 1 of Google.

Content marketing and writing helps your website rank on page one of Google by using intent-based keywords. 

This means more people who are looking for your exact service will find your business on Google. 

If you don’t have a content marketing strategy, it can be hard for people to find your business on the internet organically.

Yes, not all viewers are going to be quality leads, but if you use the right intent-based keywords, the right kind of prospects will find you. 

Below you can see how our page views and clicks have grown over the past 2 years from when we started.

We went from 300 visitors a month, to close to 12 000 visitors a month.

We can also definitely see a difference in our conversion rates too.

Over the past 2 years, we have had much more quality leads from the website as opposed to 2 years ago. 

Content marketing takes time and consistency, but eventually, the leads start coming in, as you can see from our metrics below.

We only recently started tracking conversions, but you can see growth from the graph below over the last few months of tracking.
If you would like to develop a content marketing strategy remember:

  • Post consistent content that adds value to readers.
  • If you are going to hire a freelancer to write for you, make sure that they really understand your product or service. If they can interview you (the expert in your niche) for the articles, this will be excellent. Because you as the expert can help them write unique content that addresses readers’ pain points
  • Use intent keywords. You might not have tons of traffic from intent keywords, but you will be targeting people who are looking for what you’re selling. 
  • Make use of SEO tools such as Google keyword planner, Moz, and Clearscope.
  • Share your articles on your social networks for greater reach.

Content marketing can help inbound leads find you, instead of you searching for them through phone calls or outreach

But remember, this form of marketing takes time, so if you need immediate leads, rather use outbound methods or a combination of both depending on your budget.

6. Email marketing

Email marketing is different from cold email outreach.

With email marketing, you need to grow a subscriber list and send your list consistent emails. 

These emails should provide value to your readers with strong CTA’s that make them want to reach out to you and use your service. 

For example, when you end up on a Salesbread landing page, you will be hit with a pop-up that asks if you would like to download a free pdf copy of our Linkedin outreach strategy.

It includes hundreds of templates and the exact strategy we use to get 1 lead per day. 

You will then be asked to add in your business email address and if you would like to be added to our mailing list.

We currently have close to 3000 email subscribers.

Does email marketing work? Well yes.

Here’s an example.

A year ago we had a client book a call with us.

At that point in time, they weren’t ready yet to hire Salesbread. A year later, they were still on our mailing list; One day one of our emails popped into their inbox and they remembered us. They then hopped on a free 15-minute consultation call and hired us. 

So email marketing keeps on reminding potential customers about your business. 

Below is an example of one of our email marketing emails:

Below is another example from Cloud App, where readers can download a free ebook.
If you’re unsure of exactly how to run email marketing campaigns, this resource from Hubspot is a great starting point. 

7. Warm calling

Infographic from Expert Callers.

Warm calling is pretty much calling a prospect that you have already had some form of contact with.

Whether it’s reaching out to a referral, someone who emailed you, or from a direct mail campaign, etc. 

Because of your prior contact, you have already “warmed up” your prospect.

So they know who you are and what you do. This makes sales calls easier for sales teams to close deals

SIDE NOTE

In a way, our service at Salesbread allows you to warm call your prospects.

Why?

Because all we do is start conversations that allow you to book that sales call.

By us reaching out to new leads through Linkedin or email, they already know who you are and what your business does.

This makes it easier to book a sales call and chat about how your product/service can help them.

8. Webinars

Some founders and experts in their field have also hosted free webinars.

In a similar way, you can invite prospects who are your ideal target audience. You can do this via Linkedin, or email. You could even advertise your webinar over social media.

But before you decide to launch, it’s important to consider the following:

  • The topic you will be discussing
  • The length of the webinar
  • Which channel will you use
  • The time/date and if the webinar will be live, where people can ask questions

Remember, just because you’re hosting a webinar, it doesn’t mean that prospects might be ready to buy from you immediately.

So discuss prospect pain points, and how your product or service might be able to help. 

“When you know exactly what topic you plan to explore and which pain points you’re going to solve, it’s easier to appeal to your ideal attendee and subsequently convert them to a paying customer.” – Zoominfo

Also, consider which type of content will resonate the most with your audience. 

You could do:

  • Educational 
  • Case studies
  • Product demos
  • Interviews with another expert in the field

You can also ask leads to sign up for the webinar beforehand.

When you do this, you will be able to capture specific data about the prospect.

This in turn will allow you to follow up with them at a later stage, or to add them to an email list. 

9. Use Quora & Reddit

We aren’t experts in using Reddit or Quora to generate leads, but we have had many clients tell us that they have used these two platforms effectively in their sales prospecting

According to a Reddit user, this is how he uses the platform to generate leads.

“1) Sign up and find Reddit threads created by customers that fit your target group, or that are closely related to them.

In this way, you’ll have access to an incredible amount of info that will help you during the interaction with your potential clients.

2) Start collecting knowledge about your target group in a spreadsheet – focus on your potential customer‘s pains and needs.

3) Tailor a strong value proposition and create a clear list of all the benefits your solution can offer.

4) Use all the data gathered to get in touch with your potential clients in a more efficient and personal way.”

When it comes to using Quora you should do the following:

  • Create an interesting profile
  • Find relevant topics for discussions or create one
  • Engage with your audience
  • Show that you are an expert in your field
  • Be helpful and dont be salesy
  • Use TrackBacks for SEO
  • Use Quora To Create Content Ideas For Your Blog
  • Share your most popular responses

For an in-depth article on how to do this exactly read this: https://www.clickfunnels.com/blog/quora-lead-generation/

10. Courses 

If you create a course in your niche, you will be able to sell it to others who would like to learn about your process.

“These courses provide a curated learning experience around a specific problem, so the probability of qualified leads opting in to hear from you increases.”

B2B marketers can simplify their complicated products and services into easy-to-understand courses.

In your course focus on solving pain points.

For example, if you’re selling a SaaS product, you might want to offer a course on how to use it effectively.

One company found that by doing this they had their customer retention rate increase by 320%. 

If cold calling isn’t working for you…

Try the above-mentioned methods.

You don’t have to use all of the above, but try a few and see which alternatives work the best for your business. 

But if you would like a guaranteed 1 qualified lead per day, hop on a free 15-minute consultation with Salesbread. Our pricing is less than hiring a full-time sales rep, so it might just be worth your while. 

Have a Question? Get in Touch

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