Best Cold Calling Scripts to Handle Different Selling Situations [ With Sample Scripts]

How often do you find yourself fumbling in the middle of a cold call? 

*Mind voice: Always* 

We have all been there. And yes, it’s embarrassing – Especially when they play it back to your manager!

While it’s human to get lost in words, letting it slide could seriously affect your prospecting efforts and may end up ruining your career.

It is important to note that the real villain here is not fear per se but the ambiguity that comes with cold calling. 

So in order to ace a cold call, you should have a cold calling script. It kicks ambiguity out of the scene and helps you, among other things, be mindful of what you are saying and pitch your message clearly. 

In this article, we present you with 27 battle-tested cold calling scripts that help you take back control of your calls and ace your game like you always wanted to.

What is Cold Calling?

Cold calling is an act of reaching out to prospects who are not aware of your company or offerings, over the telephone.

Despite the emergence of new outreach channels and the rampant pessimism about the practice in general, cold calling remains one of the fastest ways for sales reps to connect with the prospects and get a meeting booked. 

Why You Should Use Scripts for Your Cold Calls

  • Be mindful of what you are saying – While your cold call should ideally feel like a spontaneous interaction, getting on the phone impromptu might lead to awkward pauses, filler overuse, and clumsy delivery. But having a script helps you avoid mistakes, stay mindful of what you are saying, and get your sales message across confidently.
  • Be prepared to face objections – You are bound to get objections in cold calls, at least in most cases. Cold calling scripts help you anticipate objections and be prepared to face them head-on and turn them into opportunities.
  • Ensure performance across the board – With a script in place, sales leaders can rest assured all their squads are performing at their best.
  • Effectively train new reps – Scripts give new sales reps a framework to work in so they won’t get stuck anywhere due to misconceptions or confusion about what to say and what not to say on the phone. The bottom line, it helps sales leaders speed up the training process.

How to Structure Your Cold Calling Scripts: 3-Step Framework

Here’s a simple 3-step framework to help you build your own cold calling script:

You have two things to achieve at the beginning of your call: Get your prospect’s attention and intrigue them enough to stay on the call.

To achieve this, first, identify yourself and where you are calling from. Second, tell them why you called. The reason could ideally be about the challenge your prospect is currently facing and how you can help them overcome it and achieve a tangible result. Third, ask the prospect if they are interested in discussing more on the issue. 

They are hooked. Now what? Dig deeper to identify and validate their pain points and see if they are a good fit for your company and offerings. You can make use of sales models like SPIN, MEDDIC, NEAT, GAP to frame specific qualifying questions to fish out more information out of your prospects. 

Here’s an example of qualifying questions based on MEDDIC.

  • Metric – How much do you aim to cut down on production costs by next quarter?
  • Economic Buyer – What does success look like for you?
  • Decision – What is the formal workflow or process for approvals?
  • Identify pain – What are your future expectations, and what is holding you back?
  • Champion – Can you show me what the next steps are from here

Once you are done qualifying your prospects, summarize every challenge and aspiration the prospect mentioned during the call. This informs the prospect that you were not just trying to sell a product but you were, in fact, listening to their problems. It shows them that you have genuine intent to help them out. 

Now, add a short pitch on how your product, service, or solution helped other companies with similar issues achieve the desired results and reassure them it is possible to replicate the same results for them too.

At the end of the call, get them to take the desired action – in most cases, it is to set up a meeting. Clearly state the next step and suggest a date and time of your choice and ask if it works for them.

Sample Cold Calling Script based on the 3-step framework

Image of Cold calling script sample using the 3 step framwork

Cold Calling Scripts

Openers to Kick off Meaningful Dialogue with Prospects

No one is waiting for a sales call to get sold on some grand idea. The cold truth is, your prospects might be preoccupied with a million other things, when you make the out-of-the-blue call. So if you don’t grab their attention and interest them enough at the opening of your call they sure are going to hang up and go on with their life. Here are 5 openers to arrest your prospect’s attention.

1. When you use a trigger event 

Hi James, it's Mike with Sky Securities.

I noticed that you took part in a webinar on Digital Security Solutions last Wednesday, is that an area of concern for you?

Because the webinar really brought to light how the rise in financial cyber crime is posing a huge threat to businesses like yours and big players like ANV are already pouring millions of dollars into building robust security structures.

But wouldn't that much investment be a struggle for an establishment of your size?

(Pause and wait for the prospect’s response)

“Yeah, a lot of our clients, too, faced this problem. I’m curious, would it be okay if I dig 
deeper into the situation and see where exactly we can help you?”

"Great! Tell me Mike…"

(Start asking qualifying questions)

2. When you get referred by prospect’s colleague

Hi Emilio, it’s Maria with Prolific. 

I just got off a call with Tyler from the Product team. He says you are actively looking for a solution to streamline and speed up the process of your dev team. Is this the right time to talk?

“Yes”

Great. I’ll ask you a few key questions first to understand your situation better and see 
where we can fix your dev team’s process. Sounds good?

“Yes”

Great. Now tell me Emilio…

(Start asking qualifying questions)

3. When you get referred by your clients or mutual connection

Hi Leon, it’s Mia with ThriveSpace. 

I was speaking with Lucas at Kikazz Softwares the other day and he said you are actively looking for a new office space to accommodate your growing team. 

We’ve been helping startups like yours rent affordable office spaces in the Buffalo city area. Most recently, XSoft rented a 100 square-foot office with us and that cut their overhead cost by almost 15%.

I thought I’d reach out to you to see how I can help you with your situation. I hope I didn’t catch you at a bad time.

“No, go ahead”

Awesome, could you help me answer a few questions so I can get a clear idea of what 
your situation is? 

“Yes”

Perfect! Now tell me Leon…

(Start asking qualifying questions)

4. When you follow up after shooting a cold email

Hi Robert, it’s Amelia with iCandy. I noticed that you opened an email I sent you on Wednesday about how optimizing Skypark’s website could increase your traffic by 20% in under 3 months. 

I thought I’d reach out to you and see if you are interested in hearing more about that. Do you have a minute?

If “Yes”

Before I tell you more about our solutions, shall I ask you a few questions to better understand your situation. Can I proceed?

If “yes”

(Start asking qualifying questions)

5. When you want to re-engage with a lost lead

Hi Sophia, it’s Lucas from Supernova.

Three months ago, you showed interest in making a TV spot for Coco Drink because there was a slump in sales in the last quarter. But since the allocated budget had to be redirected into some other campaign, you decided not to move forward with the idea. What does 
the situation look like for you now? 

Prospect Responds

Oh, that’s nice. Start asking qualifying questions

Note: Engage in small talk with the prospect if you think it is necessary. It is all about making the prospect feel comfortable with you.

Scripts for Turning Objections into Opportunities   

Despite how awful and discouraging they might sound, objections present an excellent opportunity to explore hidden challenges, requirements of your prospect, and help you keep qualifying them better. Here is a list of simple, yet powerful responses to tackle cold calling objections like a pro.

Note: If a prospect raises an objection, always try to end your response with a question.

Reflex Responses

1. I’m not interested

“{prospect name}, it’s absolutely reasonable to not be interested in my first call to you. I’d like to give us an opportunity to schedule a more formal time. In the meantime, I’ll email 
you a few wonderful success cases that might gain your interest. 

If it does, and I think it will, I'd love for us to keep our appointment, if not then you shouldn’t be interested.” 
(Source: Wingman)

Why it works: With this response, you are achieving three things – Making the prospect feel understood, making them curious about your offering, and most importantly, exploring the possibility of getting a formal meeting with them.

2. Mail me the information

“I’d be glad to do that. Can you tell specifically, what kind of information will help you? 

{Prospect responds}

That’s interesting, why is that important?” 

Why it works: This one from Jim Dunn’s ‘Common Sense Selling’ subtly moves the prospect from hanging up the phone to continuing to answer your qualifying questions.

3. We have everything we need

Oh that’s great! But as you know, there's always room for improvement. I did a bit of research on {prospect company} before calling you and I found that {prospect pain point}. I 
figured out we could help you {tangible result}. 

I can mail you the information if you want and you can get back to me if you're interested. Sounds good?

Why it works: The response lets your prospect know that you have actually done your research. And since you are providing value in the form of research, the prospect is more likely to share the email address with you.

Time

4. Too busy right now, call back later

“Oh, that’s fine. How about I call you later this evening/tomorrow morning at {specify 
time}?

Why it works: First, you are being respectful of their time. Second, you are committing them to a specific time, so there’s no confusion as to why you should make the callback. 

5. Call back next month or quarter

“Sure. I'd be glad to. Out of curiosity, is {prospect company} gearing up for {big 
commitment - like product, acquisition} in the meantime? 

Why it works: When a prospect asks you to call back after a certain period, typically a quarter or 6 months, there’s a high chance that their company is engaged in some important project or going through a transition. This response will help you know what that is and further qualify your theme. 

Note: If you are going to call a prospect after a few weeks or months, keep your prospects in the loop by regularly sending them emails with information that interests them in the meantime. That way, you won’t come off as a cold caller the next time.

6. This isn’t a priority right now

“Ok, that’s fine. Would you be open to discuss if I call you back in a month or two month?”

Prospect response

Great! Meanwhile, we have some interesting whitepape/resources on {subject matter that interests your prospect} I can send it off to you by email. Would you like to receive it?

Why it works: Even though you’re delaying the discussion by a few weeks, you are securing their email address which you use to warm up the prospect on a regular basis.

Indecision

7. I need to think about it 

{Prospect name}, I understand that thinking about it might make sense right now, but can you help me understand what’s exactly holding you back? 

Why it works: “I need to think about it” always means the prospect isn’t convinced or clear about something. That’s why it’s important to know what is bothering them before you ask other questions. This script from Mike Brook’s ‘Power Phone Script’ does exactly that. 

8. I’ll need to discuss this with person X

“I understand, {prospect name}. If it’s alright with you, I’ll be happy to reach out to {person X/decision maker} directly and answer any questions they might have. Would that be 
okay?”

 If “yes”, ask for their number and go ahead. 

If “no”, say, “That’s okay. Quick question though, “Do you think {person X} would like to 
hear about this?”

Why it works: Also from Mike Brook’s ‘Power Phone Script’, this clever response will either get you speaking directly with the decision maker or know more about them.

9. We already have Competitor X product/service

“Oh, that’s okay. Just a quick question, under what circumstance would you consider 
switching to other products/services?

Why it works: Just because the prospect is already using a competitor’s product or service, it doesn’t mean the doors are shut forever. The above response helps you explore future goals and aspirations of prospects and other interesting information.

10. I heard that {something bad about your product/service}

“Sorry to hear about that/Thanks for bringing this up, {prospect name}. Could you be 
more specific on what you heard about {product/service}?”

Why it works: Just like a customer service representative, you are trying to empathize with the prospect and are trying to dig deeper into what exactly they are concerned about. Make sure you sound genuinely concerned about their feelings and determined to clear up the doubts.

Money

11. What’s the price?

“That's a great question. In order to get you the best price though, I'll need to understand a bit more about your specific needs and requirements. Does that sound good to you?”

Why it works: You obviously want to know your prospect’s specificity to determine where they fit. That’s what we are doing with this script. 

Scripts to Work with Gatekeepers

If there’s one person that salespeople want to avoid at all cost, it would be the gatekeepers. Gatekeepers are experts at snapping your calls short and making you feel stupid. But consider this, they know a great deal about your prospect, and that information could save you tons of time and the overall success rate of your cold call.

However, you can’t get anything out of them if they sound harsh or dominating. When speaking with gatekeepers make sure you sound polite and professional. Here are two scripts to help you work with gatekeeper:

Working with Assistants, Secretaries and Other Screeners

Hi {gatekeeper name}, it's {your name} with {your company}. I’d like to speak with {prospect name} to discuss {specify prospect's pain point and your possible solution for it}. But just to make sure I don't waste his/her time, you could perhaps help me answer a few questions. Is that okay with you?

“Sure. Go ahead”
“Great!”

Now, proceed to ask qualifying questions like…
1.When is the best time to reach {prospect name}?
2. Which is the preferred medium of communication for {prospect name}?
3.Who usually makes the decision regarding X?

Thanks a lot {gatekeeper name}, I’m glad I reached you. Now if the {prospect name} 
available, could you please connect me with him/her?

Why it works: By explicitly stating that you don’t want to waste the prospect’s time and asking them to help with that, you are making the gatekeeper’s job easier – which is to save the prospect’s valuable time – and hence would be happy to divulge information you could have never found on the internet. 

Working with Receptionist

Hi, it’s {your name} with {your company }. Put me through to {prospect name}  in the {prospect department}, please.

“Sure, hold on a second”

If the receptionist asks: “What is this about?”

“Please tell her/him it’s {your name} with {your company} and calling about  {specify a 
prospect's pain point and your possible solution for it}.

Why it works: By instantly asking them to connect you with the prospect department you can save time explaining the reason. The key here is to sound important, polite and familiar at the same time. 

Common gatekeeper objections and Responses

Objection #1: Were they expecting your call?

I had mailed {prospect name} earlier informing him/her that I’d be calling today

Objection #2: They are in a meeting. Call later.

Alright. May I know when would be the right time to call {prospect name}?

Objection #3: They are out of town/‘ve gone for vacation.

Oh, alright. May I know when {prospect name} will be back in office?

Objection #4: Email the information.

Sure. I'd be glad to do that. But first, just to make sure the information is relevant and useful to {prospect name}, I’ll need to ask him/her a few important questions.

Scripts for Voicemails that Get You a Call Back

Most salespeople are convinced that voicemails are a waste of time. They can’t be more wrong. While it’s true that the average response rate of voicemails is a mere 4.8%, consistently leaving effective voicemails could dramatically increase your chance of getting a callback. That said, here’s 5 script to nail your voicemails:

1. When you use a trigger event 

Hey Peter, it’s Boris with SmartOffice. I’m reaching out because I came across your post on LinkedIn about how the back office work in your store is eating up a lot of your 
workday.

We’ve helped many small business owners like you in the Michigan city area to run a leaner back office and spend 50% time managing their store. And I’m sure I can help you as 
well.

Let’s hop on a quick chat to discuss more. Here’s my number 1234-5678. Again, it’s Boris with SmartOffice calling from 1234-5678.

Note: Always repeat your name, your company name, and your contact number at the end of your voicemails, so the prospect doesn’t have to replay the message to get all the details.

2. When you get a referral from within the prospect’s company 

Hi Eve, it’s Adam with Aaahzum. I just had a word with Mike in Marketing, and he said you hit a snag with recruiting designers for your team.

Our platform hosts a community of 10,000+ full-time and freelance designers. Just recently, we helped Crafty recruit eight full-time designers in just under a month and reduced 
their recruiting cost by over 30%, and I hope we can help you with your situation too.

Let’s get on a quick call. Here’s my number 1234-5678 . Again, it’s Adam with Aaahzum at 1234-5678.

3. When you get a referral from client or mutual connection

Hi Emilio, it’s Maria with Klenty. I was speaking with Robin from Rufeel Corp about how Inside Klenty’s Intent-based sales cadence playbook could book 3x more meetings for their 
Inside Sales Team and he said you would be interested in it as well.

You can reach me at 1234-5678 . Again, it’s Maria with Klenty at 1234-5678 . 

You can reach me at 1234-5678 . Again, it’s Maria with Klenty at 1234-5678

4. When you follow up after shooting a cold email

A. For prospects who have engaged with your email

Hi Adril, it’s Mellisa from The Content Company. I noticed that you opened the email I sent to you on Monday and thereafter visited our website.

I wanted to ask you a few questions to learn more about your situation and see where exactly we can help you with. I’d also be happy to send off interesting resources if you are interested.

Give me a call at 1234-5678. Again it’s Mellisa from The Content Company calling from 1234-5678.

B. For prospects who haven’t engaged with your Email

Hi Adril, it’s Mellisa from The Content Company. I sent you an email on Monday regarding how we can help drive 30% more traffic to Angel Fluffy’s website in 6 months. Did you get a chance to read it? If you haven't, do check it out. My Email ID is mellisa@thecontentcompany.com

Meanwhile, if you’d like to sit for a quick chat I’m all in for it. Here’s my number 1234-5678. Again, it’s Mellisa with The Content Company, calling from 1234-5678.

5. When you make a last ditch effort to connect with the prospect

Hey Daniel, it’s April at One Piece Corp. I have been wanting to share some ideas on how you can reduce your customer churn rate and increase your bottom line by upto 20% per year. I tried to reach you a couple of times, but I didn’t get a call back. So this time if I don’t hear back from you, I’ll assume you are not interested and I’ll move on.

Otherwise, give me a call back at 1234-5678. Again, it’s April with One Piece Corp calling from 1234-5678.

Cold Calling Best Practices

  • Know your prospect – Research before you pick up the phone. It lets you filter out bad leads from good ones, find ice-breakers to start conversations, and anticipate possible objections.
  • Keep it short & be transparent – Get rid of chitchats. Keep your message brief and straightforward. And always be transparent about who you are, where you are calling from, and the reason for calling.
  • Listen intently – Keep tabs on every word, tone, and pace of your prospect. It helps you better see their true motives and objections.
  • Focus on qualifying, not presenting – The purpose of a cold call is to qualify and get the prospect to move them to the next step, which in most cases is setting up a meeting. So save your “presentation” for the discovery or demo call.
  • Come across as an authority – As a salesperson, you should appear to your prospect as a trusted expert inclined to understand and solve their problem and not a sleazy pitchman pushing products down their throat. 

On to You

At the end of the day, it’s your call and they are your prospects. So use these scripts as a starting point to build your own. Once your script is ready, practice it a dozen times to see where the script sounds a bit off and tweak accordingly. Finally, keep testing out your script in the real world and keep refining it for best results.

Happy prospecting!

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