Unbelievably, many small business owners believe that telemarketing is useless, prospecting doesn't work, and cold calling isn't worth the effort.
Obviously, everyone wishes that their social network is so robust that they consistently produce new business from referrals. Unfortunately, even the most connected entrepreneurs social circles have their limits.
Here are some proven tips and suggestions that can both help your telemarketing efforts be much more productive, and rid yourself of any doubts regarding the efficacy of prospecting.
Listed below are some simple rules of thumb for getting past gatekeepers.
1. Make Friends: treat gatekeepers with respect, humor, and understanding. Their role isn't a piece of cake. Treat them as individuals with their own personality, not just nameless obstacles who get in your way.
2. Make them look good: Secretaries want to look good for their bosses. How can you help? Convince the gatekeeper that you can solve the decision-maker's problems.
3. Respect: Consider the gatekeeper to be part of the sales process. Gather whatever information you can.
4. Don't give up: Call at distinct instances if your initial attempts are rebuffed. Learn your DM's routine & moods!
5. Timing: Call outside of regular business hours. Many decision makers feel less pressured before or after regular hours.
6. Be Unique: Use your sense of humor, creative instincts, and overall personality to distinguish yourself.
7. Network: Build rapport with each and every person you speak to. Regardless of whether or not they are the actual person you are targeting, you must remember that they too are individuals, and deserve courtesy and deference.
8. Gather Information: Get data from every cold call you make, whether or not you consider the call to be successful. Ask the right questions and collect pertinent details on the prospect.
9. Attack on Several Fronts: Utilize a variety of communication methods to reach the decision maker. Simply making numerous calls each day might not do the trick. Try email, faxes, and direct mail to get your product or service on the executive's desk. Some managers prefer email to the traditional phone call. Once you realize the method they favor, react accordingly.
10. Enthusiasm: Stay upbeat and positive regardless of how many calls you've made, or voicemails you've left.