cold call


Definition of cold call

: a telephone call soliciting business made directly to a potential customer without prior contact or without a lead

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Other Words from cold call

cold-call verb

Examples of cold call in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Hamilton picked up the phone in Reno, Nevada, to cold call General Motors in Detroit. Phoebe Wall Howard, Detroit Free Press, "GM quietly helped company set up ventilator assembly line after a cold call," 3 July 2020 Ethan Lin, a third-year medical student at the University of Ottawa, told me that the group he was involved with created a list of 1,000 companies in Ottawa and began cold calling them for donations. Ian Austen, New York Times, "One Continent, Two Very Different Political Responses to the Pandemic," 27 Mar. 2020 The idea was that Warren campaign volunteers would cold call Democrats and urge them to support the senator from Massachusetts in the primaries. John Kelly, Washington Post, "Some Warren campaign volunteers in Virginia show dogged determination," 18 Feb. 2020 The cold calls go out, hundreds a day, from a dank basement in the redwood hills south of San Francisco. Sabrina Willmer, Los Angeles Times, "Inside Ken Fisher’s investment kingdom, where the pace and the talk can be rough," 22 Oct. 2019 Don’t respond to a cold call out of the blue relating to Medicare, as those aren’t even allowed. Tribune News Service, oregonlive, "Medicare open enrollment brings out the scam artists: Here’s what to watch out for," 11 Nov. 2019 Fraudsters find their victims across the country through cold calls, door knocking, email, Facebook ads and Craigslist. Kaiser Health News,, "Watch out for this Medicare scam involving DNA genetic tests," 3 Aug. 2019 Even in a high-tech age, scams targeting seniors frequently are initiated by cold calls. Russ Wiles, azcentral, "How to discuss those taboo money topics at over the holidays," 1 Dec. 2019 The company is based out of Orlando but Gerald cold calls prospective clients from home and reports to his boss Leon Ellman at the company’s Fort Lauderdale location. Austen Erblat,, "Married for 73 years, South Florida man refuses to retire," 27 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cold call.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cold call

1966, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for cold call

Time Traveler

The first known use of cold call was in 1966

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Statistics for cold call

Cite this Entry

“Cold call.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for cold call

cold call


English Language Learners Definition of cold call

: a telephone call made by a business to try to sell something

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