The Secret to a Scheduled Meeting — Longer Cold Calls

January 8, 2019

Shawn Parrotte

Hello 2019! If there’s one truth in the world of business, it’s that every year has to be bigger than the next. Bigger sales targets mean more pipeline to build, and that in turn means more meetings need to be scheduled by the SDR team or self-sourced by sales reps.

To help you amazing reps out there, we’re kicking off the new year with actionable ways to fill up your pipeline — a blog series on Cold Calling! In each article of this series we will feature one or more important cold calling data insights coupled with useful tips from sales leaders.

Cold Calling is probably the hardest thing to do in sales. The method isn’t naturally designed to make you successful, so SDRs and sales reps need as much help as they can to overcome obstacles and objections.

At, we analyzed over 1 million cold calls made using sales engagement products like Outreach. Here's what we found:

Average Cold Call Duration is 80 Seconds #

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The average duration of all connected cold calls is just over a minute long. But the key to a successful cold call is to ensure you have a longer conversation.

10% of Connected Cold Calls Last More than Two Minutes #

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That's right, only 10% of connected cold calls last more than two minutes. Which means it is difficult to craft a long conversation. The best cold calling team strategy and coaching process needs to focus on how to have longer, more meaningful conversations.

Successful Cold Calls Average 7.5 Minutes #

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The average successful cold call (that resulted in a longer discovery meeting) lasts 7.5 minutes. This suggests that longer conversations are closely co-related with success. But what is the valid cause for a longer conversation to be more successful? The secret clearly lies in how you use the first few minutes of the conversation. Are you interesting, intriguing, and likable on the phone? Do you have an interesting story and some soul searching questions that make the prospect reluctant to hang up and get back to their computer?

Reps need to master the craft of having in-depth conversations. So here are some tips from someone who knows the craft really well.

Nancy nardin sqr

Tips for a Successful Cold Call #

Nancy Nardin, the Founder of Smart Selling Tools, Inc. and the Co-Founder of Vendor Neutral, has some very interesting tips (coming soon in our collection called 21 Cold Calling Secrets - From the Masters) for reps to have an engaging conversation:

  • Find someone that can introduce you to a prospect. When that's not possible, make sure you’re prepared and get right to the point.
  • "Can I have 20 seconds to tell you why I'm calling." is a great way to get started.
  • If you've been told to use a script that doesn't feel like you, find a way to make it more natural to you.
  • The key is to do it in a way that doesn't stray from key principles like:
    • Be confident - you're calling for a reason that will benefit them. (Otherwise, why are you calling?)
    • Be clear on your objective (Unless you're have a highly transactional sale, your goal is likely to get a meeting scheduled, rather than to close a sale.)
    • Know their "why". (Why should they want to meet with you.)

"My best tip is to not take rejection personally."

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