You’re eating dinner with your family, or just getting home from work, or are enjoying sleeping in on a Saturday morning, when the phone rings . . . it’s a telemarketer!
I know, I know, don’t scream. If you’re like me you cringe when you even think a telemarketer is calling. You dread being put into the uncomfortable situation of answering the phone and listening to a meaningless pitch for two minutes from a non-stop-talking person, before you muster enough of your calm voice to say: I’m not interested. Or you answer the call and immediately say don’t call here again, or you just don’t answer. Can you say, a w k w a r d?
Funny, I used to work for a company in college that used telemarketing to gain leads and I remember actually thinking the script was simple and to the point. Why can’t all calls be this way? Yes, as a money-strapped college student, I needed the job.
If you use telemarketing as a puzzle piece or make any outbound calls to clients or prospects, make sure you maximize the time and effort with five simple tips
#1 Leave a message: Even when calling a residential phone number, leave a message. Allow the prospect to hear your story at their convenience, not when they’re watching their favorite TV show.
#2 Be brief: If you get an answer, there’s no reason to take longer than 15 seconds to state why you are calling. There’s no need to go into a 1–2 minute speech before the prospect has had a chance to say hello.
#3 Offer something free: By golly, if you’re making a call, please, please offer something free. Everyone wants something free. Offer a free analysis, a free trial offer, a free report, etc. Don’t talk for any amount of time or pellet your prospect with multiple questions before you make a free offer.
#4 Don’t call at 6 or 7 am: This one should seem like a no-brainer, but we’ve all been woken up early in the morning by a telemarketer, no? Respect people’s time; don’t call before 9 am on a Saturday.
#5 Don’t sound robotic: I can’t tell you how many times I was convinced that the telemarketer was actually trying to sound like a robot. Sound like a real human being. Study the script so it sounds natural and not like, well, a script. Add personality to your voice. Be friendly. Smile while you are talking.
Even when cold calling in the business-to-business arena, these same rules certainly apply.
Let me know what you think!
Do you have other tips you wish telemarketers knew?