Defrosted Cold Calls

We all know we have to make “cold calls” to keep our client base fresh. That does not mean it is easy or even that we like it. Probably more important is whether it is good use of our valuable time. Since we only have time to spend I try to spend it the most effective way.

My training (like many others) started with picking an MPC (Most Placeable Candidate) and progressed immediately into a 55 second marketing presentation for that MPC. Over the years and thousands of those presentations I found the following problems:

1. In the IT world where I work finding a true MPC is next to impossible.

2. In the IT world it is difficult for the client to tell you what he needs let alone see the value of that MPC.

3. Voice mail is a killer. Even with innovative approaches and creative messages 5-10% contacts rates are common and very inefficient.

4. The techie managers I am calling are not interested in anything but today’s immediate need.

5. When I do make contact the hiring manager is defensive and the conversation can be strained.

Because of these problems over the years my marketing calls have changed. When I get ready to do marketing I pick my best job order, develop a presentation and start calling hiring managers. The presentation is based on the sizzle for that job whether it is the project, position or company so they will want to hear about it. Here are the advantages I have discovered while using this approach:

1. Especially in a tough market managers like to hear there are still good opportunities.

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2. Contact rates are around 25% which is a significant improvement.

3. Sometimes you find that perfect candidate for your open position.

4. After the conversation gets comfortable most clients will give you the job order if they have it.

5. You can start a relationship with a new client/candidate.

For these reasons it can be an easy transition from those “cold calls” to something that resembles warmth as you spread good news. The real key is the opportunity to open new doors in a friendly and upbeat way. The next time your client list needs freshening up give a hot recruiting call a try but keep your ears open for a great job order.

Alan Oaks is a recruiter with over 10 years in the insane world of IT. He can be reached at (800) 227-1167 x204 or