Home Anty-Climax First time cold-calling – one lesson learnt, how many more to go?

First time cold-calling – one lesson learnt, how many more to go?


I have just started my own insurance broking business. Some brief business facts about me: commerce degree, MBA and great experience in corporate world having left behind a significant multinational corporate managing a large portfolio and 40+ staff. Now, I’m a humble one-man show and cold-calling for the first time in my life.

Cold-calling is tough, humbling, depressing and exhilarating, all in the space of a day. I have my 30-second ‘elevator pitch’ sorted out, and after a few early stumbles, have it relatively smooth. I’m based in Melbourne but targeting both Sydney and Melbourne clients. My message to Sydney and Melbourne clients is the same, but when speaking to Sydney clients, I add the extra words: “I’ll be in Sydney on this day…”

I soon observed that I was having much greater success arranging meetings in Sydney and wondered about the reason for the difference. I now suspect that it must be because I give a specific time/date that I’m in town, and the potential client feels slightly more compelled to meet me given that I am making the extra effort of travelling to Sydney. It creates a sense of urgency and, maybe, obligation?

I’m sure this is bleeding obvious to seasoned business practitioners. Anyway, it’s a lesson learnt for me that I didn’t get in corporate land or in my MBA. I assume there are some other obvious lessons to be learned and would love to hear some other practical down to earth ideas.

John Kelly is the founder of Consult Insurance Solutions, a boutique Insurance Broker specialising in Directors Liability insurance, Professional Indemnity insurance and M&A insurance.

Photo: Paolo Camera

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