If you’re a business person or an entrepreneur, one of the classic ways to reach out to a potential prospect is through a cold call or email.
However, the billion-dollar question is, do the two methods still work in 2023? If yes, how do you go about it to ensure you close that prospect, and which method do you use?
In this article, we are putting both cold calling and cold emailing on a scale to see which works best. If you’ve had these questions, stay tuned to learn more.
But first, let’s start by defining what a cold call is:
What is Cold Calling?
A cold call is when you reach out to a new prospect through a phone call attempting to sell them your product or service. The word “cold” means there hasn’t been any previous interaction between the caller and the receiver, meaning they’re strangers.
According to charlie cook’s marketing success, cold calling only has a 2% success rate. Not to worry, this number climbs to 18% when the lead or prospect has been highly pre-qualified.  This study means the success of your cold outreach campaign depends on the quality, not quantity, of your prospect list.
The following section will examine the benefits and drawbacks of using a cold call to get new customers:
Benefits and Drawbacks of Cold Calling
Cold calling is an effective way to reach potential customers, build relationships, and grow your business. It is an old-school form of marketing that has been around for decades, yet it continues to be a successful business method.
Here are some of its benefits and drawbacks to help you make an informed decision:
Four Benefits of Cold Calls
1. Learn About Your Prospect Directly
It’s much easier to gauge a prospect’s interest in what you’re selling when you talk to them directly rather than waiting for a response to an email or other form of outreach. You can also get a good idea of the prospect’s needs and how likely they are to buy from you.
The direct feedback from a call refines your sales process and makes adjustments to ensure you provide the best possible service to your prospects.
2. Instant Feedback
When you send an email or other form of outreach, you’re unsure if the prospect will open it and read it. However, with a call, you can be sure that the prospect will hear your message and respond somehow. This is especially true if you use a personal reference or another form of contact.
3. Master Your Craft Over Time
Cold calling takes a certain amount of skill and practice. But if you commit to it, you can become an expert cold caller over time. With enough practice, you can learn the best way to approach a prospect, the best time to call, and the best way to craft compelling sales calls or pitches.
4. It Makes your Business Appear Professional and Human
When you make a call, you show that you care about the customer and are taking the time to contact them directly. Cold calling makes a good first impression and shows that you’re serious about making a sale.
Moreover, cold calling allows you to explain your services in more detail than an email or other form of cold outreach can. You can also use this opportunity to explain why your services are the best for the customer and how you can solve their problems.
Four Drawbacks of Cold Calls
1. Time Consuming
One of the biggest drawbacks of cold calling is it’s time-consuming. So, you must ensure you’re calling the right prospects at the right time with the right message. Doing this takes a lot of time and effort, and keeping track of all your phone calls can be difficult.
Moreover, keeping track of who you’ve called and still need to call can be challenging if you manually call prospects.
2. It Can be Annoying
People don’t usually like to receive unsolicited calls. So, ensuring you’re respectful and courteous when making a call is important. Also, ensure you’re not interrupting the prospect during an important time.
If you’re cold calling at mid-day, be prepared to leave a message or reschedule the call for a better time when the prospect is likely, not busy.
3. Reaching Decision Makers is Hard
With cold calls, you may have to make multiple calls before getting in touch with the right person. Doing this can be especially true for larger companies, where it can be challenging to get past the gatekeepers.
It’s also important to remember that you may be unable to reach the decision-makers on the first call. So, you may have to build a relationship with the person you’re speaking to before contacting the decision-makers.
4. Expiration of Calling Time
Most prospects don’t want to spend more than a few minutes on the phone with sales reps, so keeping your call short and straight to the point is important.
Additionally, focus on getting the prospect’s contact information and arranging a follow-up call or meeting rather than trying to make a sale on the first call. Here’s a guide on how long you should last on a cold call and what to say. 
Five Cold Calling Best Practices
1. Keep it Short
Introduce yourself and your business, and quickly explain why you’re cold calling and how you can help the prospect.
Ensure you’re also giving the prospect enough information to make an informed decision but not so much that it overwhelms them. Be prepared to answer any questions that the prospect may have as well.
2. Learn About the Prospect Beforehand
Before cold calling, it’s important to research the prospect. Learn about the prospect’s needs, interests, and buying habits. As a result, you will craft a more compelling sales pitch and ensure you’re targeting the right prospects.
3. Keep it Friendly and Personable
When cold calling, it’s important to keep it friendly and personable. So, ensure you’re not speaking too quickly or trying to rush the conversation.
It’s also essential to take your time. Don’t forget to ensure that the prospect is comfortable and has enough time to ask any questions they may have.
4. Call During the Appropriate Time
You should only call when the prospect is likely to be available, not when they’re likely busy. Therefore, ensure you’re not cold calling too early or too late in the day.
5. Record your Cold Call
It’s essential to record your cold call to review it later. Doing this ensures you’re providing the best possible service to the prospect. It will also refine your sales pitch and target the right prospects.
Recording cold calls also helps you learn from your mistakes and become a better cold caller. You can use the recordings as a learning tool to become an expert cold caller.
What is Cold Emailing?
Cold emailing is a form of direct marketing that involves sending unsolicited emails to potential customers and partners. A cold email aims to establish prior contact and generate leads for the sales team.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Cold Emailing
Like cold calling, there are benefits and drawbacks associated with the cold emailing process. Therefore, it’s important to be aware of these pros and cons before deciding whether or not to use cold emailing in your outreach efforts.
Four Benefits of Cold Emails
1. Increases Brand Awareness
Cold emails increase brand awareness by including more information about your company, products, and services.
As a result, it becomes easier for prospects to learn more about your business and become familiar with it. They can then make an informed decision on whether or not to purchase your product or service.
2. Automates and Tracks your Emails
One of the most significant advantages of cold emailing is that you can automate the process. Doing this makes it easier to send out a large number of cold emails in a relatively short amount of time.
You can also customize your email content based on your target audience buyer personas. Doing this ensures that your emails are relevant and tailored to your prospects.
3. Highly Affordable
Another advantage of cold or sales emails is that they are more affordable than cold calls. For instance, you can set up a cold email campaign for a fraction of the cost of cold calling. Doing this makes it easier for small businesses and startups to run successful cold email campaigns.
4. Warms Up Cold Leads
Cold emails are also easier to warm up compared to cold calls. When you make a cold call, you have to rely on your sales skills and closing abilities to establish a connection with the prospect.
However, with cold emails, you can provide valuable information about your company and products. You can also use this information to slowly build a relationship with your target audience. As a result, generating leads and getting a response from the prospect becomes easier.
Five Drawbacks of Cold Emails
1. Ends Up in the Spam Folder
There is a chance your cold emails might end up in spam. This can also happen if your emails are not properly optimized for spam filters or if you are sending too many emails in a short amount of time.
2. Time Consuming
Cold emailing can also be time-consuming since you must craft and optimize each email for the recipient’s tone and interests. Additionally, you must spend time researching the intended recipients and ensure your emails are sent to the right people.
3. Difficulty Closing a Lead
Cold emails are limited in terms of the amount of information that you can include in the message. Additionally, assessing the prospect’s tone and interests through a cold email is challenging. This makes closing a lead over a cold email more difficult than a cold call.
4. High Competition
Many companies are sending out cold emails at any given time. As a result, it can be difficult for your email to stand out from the crowd. This also makes it easy for your email to get ignored and hard for it to be seen.
To ensure that your cold emails are successful, you must ensure they’re well-written and tailored to the recipient’s interests.
Five Cold Emailing Best Practices
1. Personalize Your Cold Email
When it comes to cold emails, personalization is key. You should always take the time to tailor your emails to the recipient’s interests, needs, and tone.
Additionally, you should include relevant data points such as the recipient’s name and company. This ensures that your emails stand out from the crowd and are more likely to be opened and read.
2. Send Your Emails at the Appropriate Time
Avoid sending emails too early in the morning or too late at night. Additionally, consider holidays and other events that might affect when your emails are sent. Here’s a detailed guide on the best time to send your cold email. 
3. Keep it Short and Direct
Your emails should not exceed five sentences. Instead, they should include only the most pertinent information. This ensures that your emails are read, and the recipient quickly understands your message.
4. Use an Email Deliverability Tool
When cold emailing, it is vital to use an email deliverability tool. This tool ensures that your emails reach the intended potential customer and that spam filters do not block them.
A tool such as InboxAlly not only prevents your emails from going to spam but also marks them as important and even replies to them. 
InboxAlly uses seed emails that interact with your emails by removing them from the spam or promotions folder and sending them to the primary inbox. This shows email service providers that your emails are important and should be sent directly to the primary inbox in the future. 
5. Perfect Your Subject Lines
Finally, it is important to create a compelling subject line. It is the first thing the recipient will see, so it is vital to ensure it is engaging and relevant.
Additionally, you should avoid using too many exclamation points or other gimmicks in your subject line. Here are some compelling subject lines that’ll get your email opened and read. 
The Verdict: Which is Better?
Cold emailing is best used for marketing campaigns and increasing brand awareness. Unlike cold calling, it is less effective when it comes to building relationships. You will only get information about the prospects but not get them on the phone.
The main advantage of cold calling is that it doesn’t require any form of introduction. There is no need for a warm lead, and you aren’t required to make a compelling first impression. However, the disadvantage is that you can’t know for sure if the person will actually answer their phone.
While both methods have pros and cons, trying them yourself is the best way to determine what works best.
If you want to ensure your cold email reaches your prospect with 100% certainty, be sure to try out InboxAlly. This tool guarantees your emails make it to the inbox reliably and fast.