In my experience, in business, people do business with people that they know, like and trust. This is invariably a position that is arrived at because they have met, and invested time together to reach this understanding. Increasingly we rely on our friends and close contacts and connections to advocate us to others, and others to us, in order for dialogue to begin. I really do not believe that traditional “cold calling” works in the way that it used to, and certainly not consistently.
It can work, however and does have its place I believe, but advocacy and social networking are rapidly becoming the new normal as far as door openers to new business opportunities are concerned. IMHO, this is probably a more globally acceptable way to prospect too.