Armand Farrokh
February 23, 2024

Want to reach a 48% conversion rate for your cold calls? Meet our buddy JC Pollard who did this in his last six months as an SDR (then turned into their top rep) at Gong. He just recorded a Club Playbook on 30MPC and here’s what we learned.

Most cold calls are won in the first 30 seconds. 

Without an effective opener, they’ll never hear your pitch, which means they won’t buy whatever you’re selling. So if you can nail your cold call opener, you can have real conversations that lead to conversions. 

Let’s breakdown JC’s cold call opener in 3 steps:

  1. The “how” is more important than the “what”
  2. The traditional permission-based opener
  3. JC’s spin on it: The 3YU ("3 Why You") technique

Pay attention people.

The “how” is more important than the “what”

We’ll give you a script you can steal in the next section but the words you say won’t matter if your delivery sucks. 

Delivery is your tone when you speak. AKA your vibe. Even if you found the perfect set of words to say, your prospect won’t resonate with them if you don’t feel comfortable delivering the script. 

You need to deliver your lines with confidence, conviction, and enthusiasm. Your prospect will respond well once you sound like you’re comfortable and excited to be talking to them. 

But if you sound like a hunched over telemarketer who doesn’t deserve to be in the room, you’ll be treated like one too.

The Traditional Permission-Based Opener

Here’s the fact: people don’t want to be pitched by random strangers. 

So instead of pitching your prospect right away, you want to ask permission to explain why you’re calling. Here are two examples of permission-based openers that JC uses for his cold calls. 

“Hey Nick, this is JC calling with Gong. I'm sure I probably interrupted your day. Can I very briefly explain why I'm calling you?”

“Hey Armand, JC here with Gong. Probably a horrible time. Can I have like 20 seconds to just explain why I'm interrupting your day?”

This works because instead of immediately pitching your product, we want first to explain why this call is relevant to them. Imagine someone asking you “Can I have 15 seconds to explain why I’m specifically calling you?” vs. “My product is XYZ. It has so many cool features. Ready to buy?” 

You’ll be more open to the first option and hang up immediately on the second option.

This might sound obvious but believe it or not, the vast majority of reps are asking the wrong questions. JC admitted he didn’t do this before either. But this change has been the biggest needle mover that he has done for his cold calls. 

But once the permission-based opener is done, JC adds a spin on it that massively lifts the conversion.

JC’S Spin On It: The “3YU” technique

3YU ("3 Why You") = the three distinct reasons why you’re calling them. 

The problem with the permission-based opener is that it’s not personalized at all. But once JC shares the three unique reasons why he called them specifically, they’ll realize this isn’t just another generic call and will be more open to chat. 

One of JC’s conversations may go like this:

JC: “Hey Nick, this is JC with Gong. Could I have 10 seconds to quickly explain why I'm specifically calling you?”

Nick: “Sure, go ahead.” 

JC: “The reason I'm calling you is I noticed you're actively hiring for three new account executives. I also saw your CEO just released a statement saying that you're really focused on enterprise growth. And third, notice you used to play baseball. I shot you kind of a weird email based on that. Curious, has Gong ever come across your desk before?”

It’s really hard for them to harsh hangup after you demonstrate thoughtful research.

And it’s even harder when the last question is asking for their familiarity with what we do, not their interest in learning more. From there, he’ll go into the good old elevator pitch.


Like what you heard? Follow JC on LinkedIn and listen to his full 10 minute playbook episode on cold calls here.

Sarah Brazier’s Cold Call Script and Template

Use this guide to prep for and carry out successful cold calls.