See Spinify in action and recognize performance trends. Register for our LIVE Webinar today!
BLOG / How to stay motivated when cold calling

How to stay motivated when cold calling

February 22, 2023

Cold Calling

Cold calling is hard work.

For many, cold calling can take up 70% of their time at work. It is one of the most difficult jobs to do because you would be calling someone you don’t know. You would then try to sell a product or service that could benefit their business.

The problem is, you would most likely go to voice mail and talk to people who may insult you or are very hard to get around.

Recent studies show that fear is one of the biggest obstacles to B2B outbound sales prospecting. About 53% of sales professionals give up too soon when cold calling. And 48% are scared to pick up the phone and dial a potential customer.

The biggest reason most people have a difficult time getting into this line of work is that they lack proper cold-call motivation. When you are getting ready for the day, your mantra can give you enough morning energy and zest to pick up the phone and start making calls.

Here we compiled some excellent cold-calling motivation tips to get you started. The guide below can help you stay focused when handling a difficult task and find the motivation to make more calls. We also included a couple of tips on how to gain a prospect’s trust and make successful calls.

“Be so good they can’t ignore you.” – Steve Martin.

Why Are People Afraid of Cold Calling?

Every sales call is different, and everyone has different fears and worries when dialing phone numbers. Most people worry they will say the wrong thing to a potential client or customer.

Others struggle to make cold calls since they tend to freeze up when someone answers the phone. Their mind goes blank, and they can’t maintain a positive attitude or use a convincing pitch. So, they end up losing the client.

Some sales teams who lack experience often worry if they pronounce the client’s name right. But, one of the most underestimated fears of cold calling is the fear of rejection. No one wants to be told “no.” Especially when they didn’t have the time to do their pitch.

The truth is, there is no such thing as an easy job. Cold calling takes a lot of effort and hard work to get better leads and make more money. Having the right cold call motivation can set you on the right track, regardless of how many calls you need to make.

How to Stay Motivated When Cold Calling?

Stay Motivated When Cold Calling

Motivation is often triggered by four things: preparation, need, value, and rewards.

You can’t win them all – so you shouldn’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t get the same results as the top performers in the company.

When you stay motivated, you can improve your sales technique and avoid some common mistakes. Remember to celebrate every small win and keep a positive attitude. 

Here is a quick look at the different things that can affect your motivation to pick up the phone and contact prospects.


“Every minute you spend in plannin saves you 10 minutes in execution; this gives you a 1,000 percent return on energy!” – Brian Tracy.

There is no such thing as being too overly prepared for a call. Preparation is crucial when you want to stay motivated while talking with a prospect.

When sales teams make the proper preparations, they increase the success rate by making targeted calls. Preparation helps you understand what the prospect wants and needs. It helps you provide relevant information.

Planning also makes you more efficient, professional, and on-point when making a pitch. Besides, when you take the time to prepare, you can anticipate different objections, make a stand, and manage your selling strategy.

Here are a couple of tips you can use to prepare better. For example, you can:

  • Write a good script for your product or service.
  • Research what industry or business the prospect is in.
  • Make the call a dialogue rather than a classic sales pitch.
  • Talk about the added value that you can offer to hook people in.


Need is a basic form of motivation. You need to do cold calls to make a living. But, if you want success, then you have to take this need one step further.

To improve cold call motivation, you have to set goals and challenge yourself, from how many cold calls you are planning to make in an hour to the type of pitches you want to say.

The most important thing in this profession is that you set targets for yourself to give yourself the need to succeed. When you have the need to do cold calls, you are less likely to procrastinate. And procrastination is one of the biggest obstacles for people in this line of work.

Track results and see how long it would take you to reach personal goals.

The goals should be:

  • Specific – “I want to be rich” is not a specific goal. But “I want to make $1 million” is specific. “I want to make a million in the next 3 months” is very specific. The more targeted the goal is, the more motivational it can be. Completing this objective results in an outcome that directly contributes to the achievement of the project goals.
  • Challenging – Not even the most successful sales team in the company had it easy. They’ve been making calls for years and drastically improved from their first call. They’ve worked with many prospects to try and close sales. The way a sales team does it is by setting difficult but attainable goals. More than 1,000 studies show that setting high and specific goals links to increased motivation, persistence, and task performance, compared to easy or vague goals.
  • Time-bound – Every goal or objective when making calls should have a specific timeline for completion. So, focus on adding time-lined benchmarks for short-term objectives and long-term goals.

Here is a classic example of how you can set goals to stay motivated. You can create a list of high-value prospects. This can take some time, but it is absolutely critical for effective prospecting. By creating an ideal client persona (ICP), you can focus your attention on the leads that matter.

Your ICP should include the following characteristics:

  • Pain points
  • Priorities
  • Sector
  • Goals
  • Location
  • Size (headcount and revenue)
  • Stage of growth

Create a list of 30 decision-makers at businesses that match your ICP prospects and can benefit from the products or services you provide.

Now that you have located these prospects, it is time to dig deeper. Check them on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. See what it is that they want and put in the effort to create a meaningful conversation when calling them on the phone.


Values are a very personal source of motivation. They are beliefs about what is and what isn’t important in your cold-calling career.

Values offer a construct by which people identify and assess their own standards within the context of social norms and setting goals. They provide meaning, purpose, and direction.

You can use value to measure the need and quantify the goals. Your personal goals should align with your personal strengths and values.

Character traits are also a major component of these core concepts. Having a concrete set of values to use as standards can help you evaluate and identify your goals.

To make the calls you need for the job, you have to work in sync with your values. This can promote wellness and good mental health. But, if you live out of balance with your values, then you can experience anxiety and stress. This can lead to mental or emotional issues.

So, think about your personal values and strengths. It’s important that you raise your self-awareness, create personal strategies, and clarify what it is that you want to achieve in life. This goal should be true to your values.

After you explore your values, you can find the focus and motivation for talking to even the most difficult prospects.

Want another way to boost cold call motivation? Can’t think of anything that’s related to your values? Then what about a sales idol? Is there a sales expert you look up to?

Maybe Zig Ziglar, David Ogilvy, or Dale Carnegie. You can try to improve by studying their methods. You might be able to learn more about yourself by looking at the ways other people create momentum in this working environment.


All sales situations are different. Sometimes you will be making more deals but with smaller prospects. At other times, you might even score a big deal, which can cause your confidence to increase drastically. Unfortunately, there will be months when the twentieth prospect in a row hangs up the phone on you.

This is normal with cold calling. But, no matter how many calls you make or sales objections you face, you should reward yourself.

Rewards drive results.

If you did a solid hour of cold calling, give yourself something. Maybe a Caramel Frappuccino at Starbucks. Anything.

Self-reward can help you develop your creativity. You will reward yourself for all your hard work and restore your motivation whenever you are feeling down.

Many successful sales managers use self-rewarding to stay motivated. It helps the brain produce dopamine, which is a hormone that makes you feel positive and upbeat.

When there is a reward waiting for you at the end of the day, you can become more focused and steady. Aiming for something helps eliminate distractions and reduce the odds of procrastination. Positive reinforcement is also invigorating. It is a strategy you can use to propel yourself through the workweek.

Track results, be a decision maker, and focus more on the positives rather than the sales objections you are getting. Whenever you are in a slump, you should remind yourself of past successes. Think of the many times you achieved success with prospects.

Past successes are an excellent motivator. Remembering your past successes can make you feel more hopeful and evoke positive feelings about reaching and setting new goals. So, write down all your past achievements and look how far you’ve come. This can give you a crystal clear insight into the things you can achieve.

Use Improved Reward Systems

Other than classic rewards, you can use different technologies to stay motivated when cold calling. A gamification is an excellent tool for turning mundane tasks into motivational experiences.

Many companies are already using gamification to celebrate milestones and inspire workers to score rewards and earn badges and achievements. Sales gamification can be incorporated to help employees enhance their skill set, topple their own statistics, and challenge each other.

Regardless of how many calls you need, gamification can get you excited to start talking with prospects and improve the sales process.

A recent survey shows that 89% of employees felt they were more productive if their work had more gamified elements. Many felt happier and more productive when gamification was used as part of their work schedule and routine.

So, whether you are a sales consultant, expert sales rep, or a beginner at cold calling, you can use gamification to your advantage and boost sales performance.

How Do You Mentally Prepare for a Cold Call?

Every person is different. Especially when it comes to overcoming cold-calling anxiety, remember this is a sales process that can drain you. It is hard to predict where the conversation will go, but you can manage your mindset and prepare yourself mentally for the next call.

“Know everything about your customer’s pain, the value in solving it, and your solution is there. This way, you will be unafraid of whatever their response is.” – Scott Leese, SVP of sales at Qualia.

Here are a few tricks you can use to mentally prepare yourself to start doing calls.

Many sales reps find it easier when they adopt a cold-calling persona. No matter how many times you tell yourself, “this is just a job,” it can get to you. When you develop a persona (kind of like an act), you can control the feelings of personal rejection.

For instance, you can pretend to be a character on Wall Street. This makes the “nos” feel less personal, which can make you more productive.

Another practical option is to shift your negative attitude to a positive one. For example, instead of thinking, “I don’t want to be making calls or tracking a lead,” you can say to yourself, “cold calling can help me achieve my goals.”

Whenever you are feeling overwhelmed or stressed with your schedule or conversation, you can take a break. Taking regular breaks can help you re-focus and re-align yourself with your values, goals, and ideas in life. The more you feel at ease with yourself, the more you can work on building the success rate and improving the sales process. 

How to Make Cold Calling Fun?

Want to know how to make cold calling fun? There are effective strategies for making your work entertaining and increasing your success rate. You can start by creating the right environment. It can be difficult to focus on your conversation when your work environment is distracting.

If you could put some music on in the background or decorate your workspace, that would make a good solution to your problem. Also, try to stay in the zone. Clear the mind. Focus your attention on what you plan to achieve rather than what you are doing right now.

So, instead of thinking about the number of calls you have to make, concentrate on your objective. Companies, for example, are focusing on their sales blitzes. This organized effort helps center the sales force on a certain task in one territory. And if you don’t have a goal to work on, you can focus on the most common task and try to engage potential prospects.

Lastly, it all comes down to how you perceive your work. If you treat the cold calls like a treasure map, then you can find the motivation and drive to keep searching.

For example, let’s say you have 150 calls to make. Think of them as buried treasure. One of those leads could unlock a huge deal – and your strong opening sentence can be the key. When you think of the conversation as a game, you can make the calls a lot more entertaining.

How Do I Stop Cold Calling Anxiety?

Cold-calling anxiety is a common problem.

Many sales reps feel overwhelming anxiety, embarrassment, and insecurity when a person picks up the phone. They instantly want to hang up because they don’t know what to do or what to say.

There are a few ways to try to overcome anxiety when doing cold calls.

Progressive Desensitization

Some people put all their effort into a process commonly referred to as progressive desensitization. They keep making calls until they get desensitized to it.

“It’s not about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving.” – Rocky Balboa.

Sales reps first make a script and practice it many times before they call a prospect. The confidence you build through practice can give you a sense of comfort when you carry on a conversation.

Mindfulness Meditation

Research shows that mindfulness meditation can also help with anxiety. It can reduce the effects of anxiety and improve stress reactivity. Mindfulness can help you stay with difficult feelings without encouraging, suppressing, or overanalyzing them.

Through mindfulness meditation, you allow yourself to acknowledge and feel your irritations, stressors, and worries, which, in turn, lessen their impact. To calm anxiety through mindful meditation, concentrate on your breathing. The breath of the nostrils, chest, and belly.

Try to center yourself in the current moment. Then, slowly become more aware of the sensations across the entire body. Take your time to de-stress before you go back to your work schedule.

Asking Relevant Questions

Many sales reps make the common mistake of rushing through a call and trying to sell on the first call. But that almost never happens. To turn a lead into a successful prospect, you have to build a relationship with the client.

Try asking relevant and open-ended questions. This is a useful tactic for collecting more data for future conversations. Your primary goal should be to figure out the client’s challenges and schedule a meeting to showcase your product or service.

Here are a couple of questions you can ask on your first call to help lessen the anxiety:

  • In your line of work, I see X, Y, and C happening. Does this affect your business in any way?
  • A and B are causing a lot of obstacles for a couple of our clients. What strategies do you plan to use to deal with the problem?
  • Is there anything you would like to improve in your business?

How Do I Stop Procrastinating Cold Calls?

Don’t let procrastination stop you from generating leads.

The simplest way to avoid procrastination is to deconstruct your goal. The bigger the goal, the more intimidating it feels.

So, if you are working toward a huge target, such as earning $45k more this year in commissions, then break your goal into smaller, more manageable tasks. Plan how many successful calls you have to make to earn a month to get closer to that goal.

Gamification is another successful tool for motivation. It provides participants with visual confirmation of their competence, which reduces procrastination. This system is designed to help people measure their progress clearly and know if they are winning or losing.

Gamification means adding typical game elements to the work environment. The main concept of gamification is to make use of the motivational ability of games for reasons other than entertainment. That includes tracking tasks and progress and improving training and employee skills.

When people play games and have fun, their motivational and emotional engagement is easy to see. This can be achieved when you add gamified elements to real work settings. Such as leaderboards, points, and badges. This makes gamification a practical method for overcoming procrastination.

How Do You Cold Call Without Being Annoying?

To be successful, you need to work on your talking and listening skills. The way you express yourself can leave a major impact on your prospect.

The trick to making successful cold calls is to build credibility in the first couple of seconds. Your cold call should lay the groundwork for a potential sales funnel.

“If our clients say they aren’t interested, I challenge them with a leading question.” – Ella Kobelt, Partnership Representative, Carbon Lighthouse.

One simple method to stand out from the competition is to put the needs of the client first. Know your product inside and out and offer solutions to prospect pain points. Let the client voice their concerns, and then work your way to explain how your service or product can be useful.

Sometimes, salespeople pay too much attention to their promotional offer rather than the advantages their product offers. So, when you adapt your script to make it sound less annoying, make sure to include the benefits of the product you sell. 

These benefits should answer the prospect’s questions. For example, you can provide the prospect with a specific example of what your product can do that might pique their interest. Any social proof or data you have can make the product appealing and interesting. 

What Time Should You Not Cold Call?

It depends on the industry you work in. Most of the time, it is a good idea to phone a prospect between 9:00 am and 4:00 PM. This is the time when they are most likely at work. If you want to increase the response rate, then aim to call between 10:00 am and 2:00 PM.

But you shouldn’t be calling your client in the late afternoon. This is the time when they are most likely relaxing and unlikely to start a new task. So, to make successful calls, you should schedule your conversation during the late mornings right before lunch.

Another thing to consider is which day you make the phone call. Some experts believe Wednesdays and Thursdays can be productive. These are the days when most prospects have already settled into their workflow and might be eager to make a couple of changes.

Avoid calling your clients at night, after hours, too early in the morning, or during the weekend. This can harm your reputation.


Before sales reps start making a call, they have to be in the right frame of mind to turn a lead into a lucrative client. Motivation can help with that. When you are motivated, you can maintain a positive mindset that benefits your performance.

You can build motivation through preparation, need, value, and rewards. With enough preparation, you are less likely to feel anxious and more likely to succeed. Having the right goals and values can help you stay on the right track. While rewarding yourself can keep the happy hormones up and the stress level down.If you consider adding gamification to your work environment, our team at Spinify can help. Many companies are already using gamification to boost employee motivation, engagement, and training. This system can help improve your organization’s performance. Be it through friendly competition or rewards, you can use gamification to fuel ambition and drive when doing cold calls; book a demo today. Follow our LinkedIn page to find out more.

Put those insights into practice.

Set your team up for success by improving their performance through gamification.

Back to blog