Pitching for new clients is something you’ll need to get comfortable with if you’re looking to increase your client base. But not all pitching methods are created equal. Ideally, you’d only need to implement a nurturing approach to your existing warm audience, those people who you’ve already got a connection or relationship with. But this takes time and it isn’t always an available option, especially if you’re just starting out or have already tried pitching to them previously. This then leaves you with one logical next step – pitch to a cold audience. But how do you cold pitch for work and should you even try it?
Should you cold pitch for work?
What exactly is cold pitching? To clarify, cold pitching is where you contact targeted strangers you haven’t had contact with before, and encourage them to consider working with you. You can contact them via email or telephone, through LinkedIn or message them via social media.
Pitching is an important part of growing your VA business, and you’ll find swipe files to help you master your pitching, within both the VA Membership and VA Mastery course. These will help you get clear on your offers and pitching, so do check them out if you’re a member of either.
Cold pitching for work is hard and is something I wouldn’t endorse unless you’ve exhausted your other options. It’s far better to work on the existing warm leads you have and nurture them over time.
However, I appreciate there may also be instances where it just isn’t possible to work with existing warm leads. You may be a new business and are looking for your first client, or you may have no warm leads in your sales funnel, and you now feel that cold pitching is your only way forward.
And with several VAs recently asking for advice on cold pitching for work and leads, I think it’s safe to say that some of you feel that you’re already in this position.
I’m going to share some tips to help you cold pitch effectively. But before you attempt the steps listed below, please ensure you’ve asked yourself the following questions first:
- Would it work for you if someone pitched you cold?
- Does it feel authentic to you?
- Are you coming from the right space? Are you looking to help or are you pitching out of desperation?
- Have you already pitched to your warm and hot leads, as well as contacted previous clients?
Times when you may want to cold pitch
So with all that being said, there are a couple of times when you want to cold pitch. These typically fall under one or more of the following scenarios:
- You’ve seen a great opportunity and a way for you to help someone else
- It can help put you in front of your target audience
- There’s not always job opportunities available to you on job boards
- You’re looking for a way into a specific industry or want to work with a particular person
- It’s a good way to practice your selling skills
Just bear in mind, if you’re cold pitching for work, you need to ensure you’re staying on the right side of GDPR regulations. You can’t simply add people to your email list and start messaging them. You also need to be aware of how you obtain their contact information, so you’re staying on the right side of the law. This blog on Medium can give you a brief overview – but also do your homework, before you start pitching.
How to pitch effectively to new contacts
If you’ve decided that you need to cold pitch for work, here’s a brief rundown of the steps you need to include if you want to heighten your chances of success:
- Personalise it – Not just by using their name in the initial greeting, but show you’ve looked at their website and know what they do and the problems they may be facing.
- Introduce yourself and use your elevator speech.
- Prove you’re a fan – Reference back to a recent blog or social media post, refer to their email newsletter etc, show how you came across them.
- Show them why they should care about you reaching out – What problem can you solve for them?
- Why should they consider working with you? Share your skills and the results you’ve achieved.
- Give them proof of your results – Point them to your testimonials or downloadable portfolio etc.
- Tell them what you want them to do next – What do you want them to do now? Give them a clear call to action (such as hit reply, check out your resources or book in a call).
- End with a question – This can help start a conversation and show they’ve read your pitch.
- Don’t just leave them hanging – Sign off professionally by using an email signature or a polite ‘kind regards’.
Pitching for new clients is something you’ll need to get comfortable with if you’re looking to increase your client base. However, it’s always preferable to pitch to a warm audience. Not only will this give you a bigger chance of success, but it’s also less intimidating as they already have knowledge of who you are.
But if cold pitching is something you feel you need to do, I hope the above tips will help. I’d also recommend you check out Sumo’s Million-Dollar Cold Email Templates (Plus Cold Email Tips), as they can help give you a basis from which to create your own cold pitching templates.
If you’d like to learn how to utilise warm pitching methods, so you can decrease the need to cold pitch for work, why not check out the VA Membership? You’ll not only have access to templates on pitching, but you’ll also learn more about how to market successfully – you can have a look behind the scenes of the VA membership in our blog where we literally walk you around the Membership. Are you ready to join us – you can get immediate access from the VA Membership page here.