When to prospect? Sales prospecting explained

Prospecting is what the SDR role is all about. It can be frustrating to put all your efforts into that one lead, only to have them not answer your calls. Well, we’ve got some ideas why this may be happening.

Finding out when to prospect might be the key to solve your contact rate issues. 

It can be incredibly frustrating to be ignored by your leads, right? You may have asked yourself what you’re doing wrong. Are you being too persistent? Were your cold messages not personalized enough? Did you not do enough research? 

Or… were you not calling at the right time? 

It has been proven that there are certain days and times when you will have a better chance of having your cold call answered by a lead. There are several researches out there and they all share the same findings, so let’s have a closer look –

What is the best day of the week for cold calling?

Now, imagine you’re the lead. It’s Monday, you’re just getting back to the office after a well-deserved but short weekend (they all are, right?). Believe it or not, Mondays are known to be the busiest days of the week. How open would you be to answer a cold call? I can guess you wouldn’t be too happy about it. 

Let’s jump to the end of the week. It’s Friday. It’s been a long week and all you can think about is the sun and lovely BBQ you’ll be having on Saturday. I don’t think you’d be in the right mindset to discuss any work, do you?

So that leaves us Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. We’ll get straight to the point. The best day to make your calls is Wednesday. Surprised? In fact, in average, you will achieve 46% more conversations on a Wednesday than on a Monday. The second best day is Thursday followed by Tuesday.

So here’s our answer to when to prospect: Wednesday is by far the best day, followed by Thursday. Tuesday can also be a good option, but definitely avoid Mondays and Fridays.


What is the best time to call?

Let’s go back to role playing, shall we? It’s Wednesday morning. Let’s say it’s 8 or 9am and you just got to the office. You get to your desk, switch on the computer, make a coffee, and check your emails. And, of course, there is this urgent matter that needs to be solved ASAP. Definitely, you won’t pick up a cold call, will you? Any time before 11am is not a good time to call, that’s when people plan out their days and focus on major issues.

Okay, so what about 2pm? Well, you must’ve guessed it, it is a very bad idea to call around lunch times. Different cultures have different eating habits, so play it safe and avoid calling between 12pm and 3pm.

What about calling after lunch? That’s when you’ll hit the spot. The best time of the day is between 3.30pm and 5pm. 

Did you notice we’ve missed a tiny timeslot? Well, it turns out that the second best time of the day for cold calling is between 11am and 12pm.

Is it this simple?

If only!

There are many other variables that may be keeping your contact rate lower than you’d want it to be. Figuring out when to prospect is a part of it, but there are other variables. 

An SDR needs to be persistent, that’s a fact. The reason being, you won’t have all your calls answered after your first attempt. 

Actually, it may take up to 6 calls! Knowing this, do you think you persevere enough?

What can I do when I’m not cold calling?

We’ve established that the best days to call are Wednesdays and Thursdays. So what can you do the rest of the week?

In fact, the correct question would be “what can you do to increase the probability of your lead answering your cold call?”. The answer is to warm up your calls

Send them a message or an email and highlight the pain you can solve. Why is this a good idea? 

Well, for starters, your lead will be familiarized with your name and your company’s name, so when you call, your name will, at least, ring a bell. Even if they can’t place your name, they will be more likely to pick up your call. 

Another reason why you should do this is because it can be the way in to start a conversation with your lead. Make sure to mention a day and time you will be calling your lead, so that when you call you can make allusion to your previous conversation. And there’s more. If there’s a gatekeeper, make reference to the message or even tell them you have a call arranged with your lead.

The bottom line

Once you’re in a conversation with your lead, there are lots of tips that will help you increase the chances of closing a meeting with the Account Executive, but that’s a whole new subject. 

All in all, the best time to call in the week is Wednesdays between 3.30pm and 5pm. A second good option when it comes to time is between 11am and 12pm.

Avoid calling on Mondays and Fridays. Anytime before 11am is not a good option, and neither should you call between 12pm and 3pm. 

Find out more SDR tips. Here‘s our top 4 best practices.

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