Cold Call Ratios

Supply and demand market curves
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One of the more under appreciated sales techniques is cold calls. Yes, with marketing automation and inbound marketing there are great ways to tap into existing market demand, but often times in a startup there’s a mercenary aspect where market demand must be created. Enter cold calls.

As you would expect, cold calling is a numbers game. For our small but fast-growing market, our numbers look something like the following, assuming four weeks with 20 business days per month:

  • A list of 333 companies that fit the ideal customer profile with three contacts at each company (1,000 contacts total found using LinkedIn and
  • 50 calls per day, 2,000 calls per month, every contact called twice per month
  • 10 conversations per day
  • 1 voicemail and send one email per contact per month
  • 1 demo per day

This might seem daunting at first but it you assume 12.5 calls per hour, that’s four hours of calling a day. Add in one hour a day for the web demo and that still leaves three more hours for other work, follow-ups, planning, etc. My recommendation is to consider cold calling as part of your sales and marketing strategy.

What else? What are some other cold call ratios?

7 thoughts on “Cold Call Ratios

  1. Thanks! Great to have a good rule of thumb. BTW, I think cold calling separates the true entrepreneurs from the pretenders.

    1. Good question. Naturally, it depends on the product. In my experience it is roughly 10-20 demos per sale, depending on the type of product and sales cycle.

  2. Any updates to these stats? Would love to hear whether or not your outbound efforts and results have increased, decreased, or remained the same. You said each rep makes 50 calls per day. Based on a 20 business day month, wouldn’t that equal 1000 dials instead of the 2000 dials you mentioned or did I misunderstand you?

    Either way, 10 contacts per day per rep for a total of 200 contacts per month to yield 20 demos is pretty good (10% conversion rate). Based on your post to Mr Melonakos, it looks like this activity yields on the order of 1-2 clients per month (5-10 % lead to customer conversion rate).

    Any insight on what you have experienced in terms of cycle time from initial contact to close/sale? Thanks! Great blog btw!

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