Cold Calling Checklist

Cold calling is the art of creating a business connection without any prior contact. The success rate with cold calling is not expected to be very high. As a result, the aim of cold calling is to attempt as many connections as possible without taking too much time. Only a small percentage will convert to a sale. After enough attempts, your cold call should come naturally and you should know your lines at each step of the way. 

This checklist will help you record information from the call for reference across the team.


Review leads gathered from prospecting

The first step is to assess the leads presented to you by your sales prospecting team. This allows you to review your potential contacts for the day. Your prospecting team should present you with leads categorized by cadence. This allows you to see the potential value of the lead immediately. 

Are they an “A” or a “C”? Start with the high-priority leads to ensure they are contacted. Prepare your list and get ready to begin. 

If you need to improve your lead generation then you can use our Weekly Sales Prospecting Checklist.

Take time to research the lead

You need to know something about your contact to make sure you’re asking the right questions and to engage in a discussion which could help make a sale. Cold calling may be presented as a clinical exercise but it must be delivered as a human experience. A two-line pitch about your product will not create a sale alone. Learn a little about the contact and their company beforehand to carry a conversation professionally on the call.

Take 5 minutes or 10 minutes, but don’t take an hour. The chance of each contact converting into a sale is low so you do not want to waste time on overkill research.

Record details of the call

Keep a record of all calls. Include what was said, how long they lasted, and the outcomes of the call. 

In this checklist, we’ve provided a series of form fields to record important details as and when they happen. Record the details of the call using the form fields below. Name of contact company name job title date Date will be set Phone number source ID

Relax for a moment

This is a simple and often overlooked step in the process but certainly one of the more important. 

There are different recommended techniques to help you feel relaxed on a call. You could do some quick breathing exercises before the call. Or you could deliver your opening pitch to a mirror while smiling confidently. 

Another technique is less preparatory and more active. Instead of doing the call sitting down, try standing up using a raised desk. This can create a more relaxed atmosphere for you and result in you being perceived as more personable by the contact.

On the call:

Deliver your opening pitch

The first step of the call is to introduce yourself. Some people advocate for the 7-second rule, where you must introduce yourself, your company, and your purpose in 7 seconds otherwise you will lose the client. 

You can keep it short by limiting yourself to 1 or 2 sentences. Here are some examples:

“Hi, I’m Adam from Process Street. We provide workflow management in the cloud and I wondered if you’d be free to discuss how you manage your internal operations”.

“Good afternoon! Adam from DesignStudio here – a full-service design studio with previous clients including BigCompany and CoolCompany. I’d like to talk to you about your design and branding strategies if you have time?”

Remember to finish by asking whether they are free to have a conversation and recording the result below. If they are not available, ask when might be a better time. Record your opening pitch hereAre they free to talk? An option will be selected here If “No”, record a potential future time in the field below

Check out this scene from The Pursuit of Happiness for a little inspiration.

Ask about their current operations

There is a range of different techniques for approaching a cold call. Most will agree on one thing: the client should be the person talking. Ask open-ended questions which probe towards an area your product can help with.

“How are you currently managing your workflows and internal processes?”

“How did you come to have the design and branding strategy you are currently using, and what does it mean to you?”

Write down below the question you have asked and take notes on the client’s response. Opening question client’s key points

Enquire about the problem your product solves

This now allows you to focus on your product. You can ask more specific questions, particularly ones which highlight the problem your solution solves.

Remember, this is not theatre it’s a conversation. You can go off script and you can change the wording to fit it into the flow of the conversation. 

“Do you ever find your team members don’t stick to the required processes and standards slip as a result?”

“Don’t you think your customers would see your product more clearly as a modern solution if it had a modern look and feel?”

You don’t want to be antagonistic, but you do want to apply pressure to their key pain points.

Record your question and their responses using the form fields below. The question you asked clients response

Determine if they are the decision maker

To qualify the lead, you need to know whether they are the person who can make the key decision, or whether you will be able to use them for a referral.

Ask them a clear question:

“Are you the right person to discuss this with further?”

“Are you the key decision-maker for this line of inquiry?”

Record the response below. Are they the decision-maker? An option will be selected here If they are not the decision-maker, record the details of the appropriate contact below

Give them a brief overview of your product

This is your opportunity to introduce your product. Give them a brief overview of how the product works and exactly what problems your service solves.

“We provide customizable checklists so that you can make sure team members are following the company’s standard operating procedures, allowing you to maximize performance and productivity. Big Company has been using our service for the last year and is very happy with how their workflows have been optimized.”

“We provide a full-service package of corporate branding and design services ranging from logos to UX and UI. We’ve been operating in this market for 7 years and have assisted companies with both modernizing and pivots.”

Record your pitch below. Your company pitch

Ask if they would benefit from your service

Ask them directly whether they are interested in your services. Be up-front.  

“Does this sound like an opportunity you would be interested in?”

“Would you like to take this discussion further to explore the value we can create for your company?” 

Record their response with the dropdown field. Are they interested? An option will be selected here 

Ask if they would be free for a follow-up call

Now is your opportunity to propose your next step. This could be a product demo or a more in-depth meeting. Ask about their availability.

“We can deliver a demo session of our product to help you understand it better. Would some point this week work for you, or is next week better?”

“It would be great to schedule another call where we can discuss your brand and your core demographics further. When might you be free for a further conversation?”

Note the details below. Purpose of follow-upAre they interested in a further meeting? An option will be selected here Are they a qualified lead? An option will be selected here Date of next call Date will be set here any further details to note about the follow up for the sales team

Leave your contact details

Check the prospect has your details in case they need to rearrange, or in case they wish to discuss any other aspects of the follow-up. They may want to be joined by a colleague which would require the call to use conference calling technology. 

Leave your name, email, and contact number. Take the opportunity to leave your company’s website too, to give them the chance to research you further.

Alternatively, you can use our email widget below to send your details to the client.

Pass qualified lead onto the sales team

Use the email widget below to notify the sales team of a successfully qualified lead.


PipeDrive – Cold Calling Scripts
All Business – The Cold Call Checklist: How to Stay on Top of Your Game
Maselli Group – Cold Call Counterpunch & Do/Don’t Checklist
Brian Tracy – 7 Cold Calling Tips That Will Yield Greater Returns
Boardroom Insiders – Avoid Cold Call Failure With This 5 Point Checklist
Geoffrey James – Cold-Calling Script: Make a Call That Works
Mitsu Fisher – The Magic Cold Calling Script That Will Change Your Life
SalesScripter – Cold Call Script – B2B Cold Calling Tips – How to create a sales call script [Free template]
Entrepreneur – Seven Secrets to Cold Calling Success
Fit Small Business – 25 Top Cold Calling Tips from the Pros

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