11 Secrets to Outbound Sales Mastery

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Outbound sales can feel like a relentless uphill battle. You’re constantly reaching out, often facing rejection, and the successes seem few and far between.

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The reality of the outbound sales process is tough to swallow for many reps. It’s understandable why some are reluctant to take on the challenge of outbound sales, and others quit before ever finding success.

But here’s the truth…

If you want your sales and commissions to grow exponentially, mastering outbound sales strategies is non-negotiable. Mastering an outbound sales process will put you in the elite class of sales reps.

Sales teams and managers that emphasize outbound sales as a component of the overall sales strategy are more successful, simple as that.

Importance of Outbound Sales

This is a great time to be a buyer. If you know what you need to help your business, you can grab your phone or open a browser, and get all the information you need along with a list of viable vendors.

The trend in professional sales today is to attract these inbound sales prospects by providing valuable information and an enticing message to draw buyers in.

It’s a win-win for everyone, because the buyer can self-inform, and the sales team gets a warm lead.

The problem, however, is that this model relies on buyers to know what they need.

Great outbound sales reps can get to these leads before they become aware, and play an important role in educating prospects. In a sense, they are yanking that opportunity off the table before it ever becomes an inbound lead.

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Another challenge for inbound sales reps is that the leads are always competitive since prospects are doing research and learning about multiple vendors. This means a battle to differentiate, and a grind to avoid competing on price.

Enter the “old-school” outbound sales approach. The typical outbound sales strategy involves identifying viable targets and reaching out directly without first trying to attract them through inbound marketing.

The reason outbound sales success is important is that the leads are far less competitive, allowing sales reps to effectively apply solutions to problems, and win more often once leads are qualified.

The problem is that many organizations don’t take the time to define an effective outbound sales strategy, or the methods for overcoming key challenges that are part of this sales approach. 

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What are the Outbound Sales Secrets?

Ok, you understand why outbound sales are important, now let’s explore the top 11 secrets for improving your outbound selling results:

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Outbound Sales Secret #1 – Understand Your Objectives

So what kind of outbound work are you looking to do? Sales teams need a solid outbound sales strategy and objectives to ensure success.

Illustration of a woman explaining an outbound sales plan to 2 seated workers.

Volume vs Targeted

If you need to close many small sales, your solution is probably less targeted requiring you to make lots of calls to a broad audience.

Having concise yet compelling scripts will be important, since all your interactions will be very similar and should follow a preditable pathway.

If you close fewer large deals, you likely have a targeted solution that is only appropriate for certain types of organizations, and that will require involvement from multiple stakeholders.

In this case your outbound sales process will require more time up-front for research and scoping, so you know enough about each prospect’s business and problems before initiating contact.

Determining these factors in advance will allow you to focus on the right behaviors.

B2C vs B2B Sales

In B2C sales, decisions are often made quickly, requiring an efficient but persuasive pitch.

In contrast, B2B selling usually involves more variables, and associated preparation.

Are you Calling People Locally?

If you are calling into a local territory, avoid overly spammy behavior (in fact, always avoid this!). Be mindful of your reputation in a local or other limited business community.

Outbound Sales Secret #2 – Script Everything

Certainly if you’re new to sales, scripting is critical. However I still script when starting a new outbound process regardless of my 20+ years of sales experience.

Scripting isn’t limited to your cold calling opener or pitch; it extends across all communication with potential clients, to ensure clarity, consistency and professionalism in every interaction.

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Start With your Sequence

Determine what outbound sales outreach steps you plan to take with prospects. For example, you may choose a cadence like this:

  • Day 1 – Phone call / leave voicemail, follow-up with email
  • Day 4 – Email with relevant content/article
  • Day 5 – Send LinkedIn connection request
  • Day 6 – Phone call / leave voicemail, follow-up with email
  • Day 10 – Email with another article
  • Day 11 – Like something on LinkedIn profile.
  • Day 14 – Email with request to meet
  • Day 20 – Phone call & email

Next, Script Each Step

If you are focused on volume, script out each step in your cadence so you can work fast.

If you are being more targeted, you can likely script your phone call flows and voicemail messages, but perhaps take the time to craft custom email messages based on unique details.

A comprehensive script should include the exact words you are going to say, and clarity around the commitments you are hoping to gain from prospects.

You should also script out responses to anticipated questions and objections.

Don’t Forget Your PITCH

Your pitch needs careful crafting as this will form your prospect’s early impression about what you offer. It should be 2-3 sentences max.

  1. Sentence 1 – What we do.
  2. Sentence 2 – Who we help and how.
  3. Sentence 3 – Transition and apply it to your prospect, finishing with an open-ended question to get them talking again.

I’m a big fan of Mike Weinberg’s book “New Sales Simplified” that goes into detail about the importance of your Sales Story and how that can be leveraged across your prospecting and selling efforts.

From Targets to Opportunities

The goal of outbound sales outreach is to identify genuine leads. Once that’s accomplished no matter what step in your cadence, shift over to your sales process, which should also be clearly defined.

Outbound Sales Secret #3 – Identify and Research Your Targets

To excel in outbound sales when high volume isn’t the goal, you need to know your target accounts.

This means going beyond basic company information; it involves understanding their industry, market trends, challenges they likely face, and how your product or service can offer a solution.

Find Key Information About Your Prospects

You should aim to gather as much relevant data about potential customers as possible before reaching out for an initial conversation.

This includes details like:

  • Their business size and structure.
  • Pain points they’re currently experiencing, likely foreshadowed in quarterly or annual reports.
  • Solutions they’ve tried previously.
  • Ppeople in the organization to approach with your outreach.
  • Your unique value proposition with a custom spin for them.

Leverage Online Tools For Better Insights

In today’s digital age, there are numerous online tools available that make researching prospects easier than ever before.

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Platforms like CrunchBase, LinkedIn Sales Navigator, or Google Alerts allow you to gain insights on companies’ recent news or changes within their organization – all valuable pieces of information when planning your approach strategy.

Armed with solid knowledge about your prospects, we can move on to approach methods.

Outbound Sales Secret #4 – Be Relentless and Creative

In every outbound sales process, the name of the game should be relentless pursuit.

Your persistence will make all the difference in reaching your targets.

ZoomInfo and LinkedIn, for instance, are excellent platforms to find direct contact information, but there are other options…

Find Alternative Access Points

If direct access is proving difficult, try calling main numbers and talk your way to the right extension. For pesky gatekeepers try calling at lunch (local time) to get the backup person. After-hours use the phone system and leave your persuasive, scripted messages.

This method requires commitment and that you shove your internal resistance to the side, but it’s often successful when you don’t have direct access.

Email Tips

Another crafty method to access your contact is to research and discover email structures within organizations. If it bounces, try another common structure. Remember that every ounce of effort is positive when chasing your goals.

Email your contact and inform them that you will try calling at a particulate date & time. You’d be surprised how effective this can be, at the very least for getting a response and officially opening communication. 

Illustration of elements meant to represent outbound email marketing efforts.

Even if your prospect doesn’t want to talk, you can now connect over LinkedIn and start building value through content sharing, and liking their posts.

The Importance of Persistence

Persistence combined with creative problem-solving will help you navigate around roadblocks and begin breaking through to potential customers.

Demonstrating this tenacity shows prospects that you’re committed not just to making a sale, but ultimately in your conviction about the value you can provide for them.

If you’ve done your research, know you can help, and personalize your communication, it will shine through.

Outbound Sales Secret #5 – Mix Up Your Communication

In the dynamic world of outbound sales, utilizing multiple communication channels and touch types is crucial.

This strategy ensures that you are reaching your prospects in a variety of ways including their preferred way, and not always hammering your “let me help you” sales message. 

The Power of Multichannel Outreach

A multichannel approach includes calling all numbers (including cell phones), sending text messages, emailing, using social messaging platforms like LinkedIn or Facebook Messenger, and even employing traditional mail when appropriate (“Selling to VITO” is a classic for a reason).

This variety helps create a comprehensive touchpoint system that will break through to differentiate you from your less committed competitors.

Illustration of a woman sitting at a work station, contacting people using phone, email and other messages.

Don’t Forget Your Sequence Steps

Remember Secret #2! Follow your sequence, or better yet, use a CRM platform that can automate some of the steps and prompts you when it’s time for you to jump in (i.e. calls and LinkedIn touches).

All these steps will ensure consistent communication over time while demonstrating your genuine interest.

Outbound Sales Secret #6 – Don’t Rush Key Accounts

In the realm of high-ticket outbound sales, patience is more than just a virtue when dealing with key accounts.

The stakes are high and rushing an important or scarce prospect can lead to bad outcomes. Know your target audience and how they respond so you can avoid coming off as miscalibrated.

Nurture Relationships on LinkedIn

A relationship-first approach is crucial for these nuanced targets.

Illustration of the LinkedIn.com logo.

Rather than connecting on LinkedIn and hitting out with a sales message, take a more patient approach. Like their posts, comment thoughtfully, and share relevant content with them. Build some rapport before transitioning into selling mode.

Become a Value Source First

Your initial interactions should communicate one thing: you’re there to help and add value. 

This could be through industry insights, relevant content sharing, personalized solutions, or simply by showing genuine interest in their business challenges.

Patiently Transition Into Selling Mode

Situational awareness goes a long way in fostering positive relations with your key account contacts.

Despite the pressures you are under to close sales, take the long game on your most important target accounts, and move them into your sales process when the time is right.

Outbound Sales Secret #7 – Prepare for Silence and Rejection

The journey of outbound sales is often a tough road, filled with the echoes of silence or the sting of rejection.

This reality can be daunting for new reps.

Nobody said cold calling was easy! I once inherited an experienced sales team that was massively impacted by ceaseless rejection.

Illustration of a dejected man sitting at a desk, with his head on the computer keyboard.

To succeed, it’s crucial to condition your mind to accept these challenges as part and parcel of the job.

Mental Resilience: Your Key Weapon

Building mental resilience should be at the forefront when executing an outbound sales process.

Use positive self-talk and find the humor in rejection and failure.

It can be pretty hilarious how resistant some people are to your overtures. Have a laugh and remind yourself that you are here to provide value, but others aren’t obligated to receive it.

Tackle Silence Head-On

Silence from prospects doesn’t necessarily mean disinterest; sometimes it may simply indicate they’re busy or need more time to consider things.

Stick to your sequence and trust in your process.

Coping With Rejection

In any type of sales environment, rejection is inevitable but understanding its nature will help soften its impact. In particular, the direct rejection that happens when cold calling is extra bitter.

You must remember that most times, rejection isn’t personal, it’s merely business-related decisions made by potential clients based on a wide variety of factors.

Illustration of a business woman using her body language to reject the itch of a salesman.

So long as you have a system for reflecting on failure and then adapting, your losses will help you grow and become better. Check out the Secret to Sales Success framework for more on leveraging your failures for rapid growth.

Outbound Sales Secret #8 – Breaking Through in Cold Calls

The art of successful cold calling is a critical skill for any outbound sales professional!

To break through, you need to infuse your calls with positive energy right from the start.

This doesn’t mean being overly enthusiastic or insincere but rather conveying genuine interest and positivity about what you’re offering. 

Illustration of a woman happily making a col call with a headset on, giving a thumbs up.

The Critical Opening 3-5 Seconds

It’s crazy to think, but people will decide in the first 3-5 seconds if they like you or not! This initial window is crucial when making cold calls.

Bring that positive energy and your tonality to sound likable and trustworthy right out of the gate. Embody these characteristics and they will shine through in your voice.

Remove Pressure From The Call

In outbound sales cold calling, it’s important to lead your prospect through stages they opt-in to, vs. dragging them through your “pitch”.

Here are some quick steps you can follow for success:

  1. Open with a nice greeting and ask for their assistance.
  2. When the prospect agrees, explain what you do, and why you called them.
  3. Let them know you were hoping to determine together if there could be an opportunity to work together.
  4. Close by saying if not, no problem, but if so you’d like to take a few more minutes to chat.

This cold calling flow will disarm most prospects and will lead to maximum conversions. Particularly if your offering makes sense and you framed it well, most people will agree to a few more minutes.

Then you can transition into a normal sales call, but be sure to ask an open-ended question to get the prospect talking and sharing.

Outbound Sales Secret #9 – Bring and Articulate Value

In the world of outbound sales, it’s crucial that your offering brings value to potential customers. I’ve tried selling low value products in a competitive market, and it’s not an enjoyable (or profitable) experience!

Represent a company and product that you know can help, and be diligent about positioning properly to your target market. Finally, back it up when you’re actually live with someone.

Understand Your Prospect’s Needs

An essential aspect is understanding what a prospect needs before you make contact.

This insight allows you to tailor your approach and highlight how your product or service can enhance their current situation, whether by improving an existing process or providing something they weren’t even aware they needed.

Illustration of a lightbulb illuminating a dollar sign, meant to indicate that great business ideas result in money.

Determine the Value Proposition

The higher up the leadership chain you are targeting, the more simple and less granular the value proposition needs to be.

For example, an Operations Director may benefit from an HRIS system with specific functionality to tackle their industry’s HR challenges for organizing and tracking employee records.

However the COO will care less about the particulars, and more about streamlining complex business processes in order to run a more efficient, and thus more profitable business.

Tailor your message according to the perspective of your contact. Your ability to do this properly will be the difference between success and failure.

Always Remember: The key lies not just in having valuable products/services but also in presenting them convincingly, and appropriately for your specific audience.

Outbound Sales Secret #10 – Commit to Consistency

There are many important secrets in this list, but one that will definitely make or break your results is your level of consistency. 

Like many good habits in life, the process isn’t glamorous or particularly fun, but it’s crucial to your success. Outbound sales outreach is a numbers game, and the more you do it the more leads you will get.

Any good sales team must prioritize consistent outbound activity.

Maintain Regular Outreach Efforts

To be successful in outbound prospecting, commit to regular outreach blitz periods. If your only job is outreach, then that’s easy.

If however, you are shoe-horning this in amongst other responsibilities, you best bet is to time block periods each day or multiple times each week.

Scheduling daily or weekly sessions for cold calling will significantly improve your chances of finding potential leads with less competition around them.

Your Reward – Low Competition Opportunities

No other method allows as much access to untapped markets as does consistent outbound prospecting. You’ll find opportunities where others aren’t looking simply because they lack the tenacity required for this endeavor.

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How exciting is that? While everyone else waits for inbound sales leads, you are out there knocking on doors and finding hidden opportunities.

Keep pushing despite any setbacks along the way, until your efforts become a regular habit.

Outbound Sales Secret #11 – Push Your Leadership for Help

Time is a valuable commodity in both outbound and inbound sales. There’s not a sales team on earth with extra time to burn.

The more hours you spend on non-sales tasks like research and list building, the less opportunity you have to search for, qualify, manage and close deals.

Tell your leadership to help you max out live call/meeting time each day by providing automation tools to help you focus on your highest value actions.

Automation Tools

Sales automation tools, designed to streamline routine tasks, can be a great ally here.

From phone dialing software that eliminates manual entry errors to voicemail automation systems that drop messages in after hours, these technologies are built with one goal: to help you sell more efficiently.

Fight For More Selling Time

Your leadership team should understand the value of having their top performers focused on what they do best – persuading prospects to become customers.

If they don’t understand, well, you’re the salesperson… convince them!

  • If mundane activities consume too much of your day, it’s time for a conversation about delegating or automating those responsibilities.
  • You could propose hiring an assistant or using outsourced services for prospect research and data input work.

Outbound Sales FAQs

Everyone says inbound sales is the present and the future – why do I need to care about outbound sales?

Inbound sales is predicated on a strong inbound marketing program, search engine optimization, and typically only yields high competition leads.

Illustration of a man leaning on the letters SEO, short for search engine optimization.

There will always be a place for finding and qualifying prospects that weren’t even aware they needed your help.

Learning this business skillset will put you in a very strong category of well-rounded sales professionals.

What characteristics do I need to be succeed in outbound sales?

Succeeding in outbound sales requires resilience, excellent communication skills, consistent effort, and delivering value to prospects.

Effective use of automation tools can also boost success rates.

Isn’t there an easier way to find opportunities and make sales?

An important lesson you should learn as soon as possible; in life, you generally get out of something what you put into it. There is no holy grail for sales success, where you get to do half the work for twice the positive outcomes.

Commit to becoming a well-rounded sales rep that can succeed with both inbound and outbound sales tactics.


With the right mindset, attitude, preparation, daily habits and willingness to put in the work, becoming a highly paid outbound sales behemoth is within your grasp!

With this skillset, you will never be poor and you will always be in demand in any marketplace.

In this article you’ve learned to prepare for silence and rejection. It’s part of the process.

Cold calls? You’re ready to break through by being positive, likable, and diffusing pressure with your targets.

You understand that value is key, and communicating it effectively is paramount. Your offering must improve what your prospect has or bring something new and worthwhile to the table.

Consistency isn’t just a virtue; it’s essential in outbound prospecting despite its challenges. The payoff? Low competition opportunities just waiting for you to find and close.

If you want to dive deeper into these strategies and truly crush your targets in outbound sales…

My transformative coaching program will teach you how to excel at all aspects of this challenging yet rewarding endeavor. Learn more here and complete the form to apply.

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