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Phone Calls – Your Line to Great Marketing!

by Lori Colborne

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The telephone can be an effective tool assist in expanding your market. Used poorly; however, it can have exactly the opposite effect. I don’t recommend cold calling. Most of the people I surveyed said they hate receiving cold calls.

First impressions are very important. Creating initial resentment in a potential client is destructive as far as relationship building is concerned. Relationship building marketing is ensuring you are sensitive to the comfort of your prospective client.

So you ask, “How do I find new customers if I can’t cold call?” New clients can be gained through networking, attending charity events, association meetings and trade shows, asking your clients, cross-promoters or peers for leads.

The type of call you want to make is a warm call – a call that is generated from a lead. The greater volume of information you have on a prospective client, the warmer the call will be. Using the name of your referral source also increases the warmth of the call. The purpose of a warm call is to gain permission to send your information. This is a very soft sell approach. Don’t expect or even try to sell your prospect during this first phone call. Remember, building relationships takes time – go slowly and do not be aggressive.

To make your calls go more smoothly:

• Do your homework! Know as much as you can about the company and/or potential customer and their needs & wants. When all else fails, a phone call or visit to the receptionist can point you in the right direction.
• Write down what you are planning to say before you pick up the phone.
• Introduce yourself (first and last name) – tell them how you got their name.
• Be concise and give an outline or reason for your call.
• Ask permission to send a letter with more details.
• Follow through by mailing or faxing your letter the same day.
• To maintain control of the call, avoid leaving messages. If you are having to call numerous times and can’t get a hold of your prospect you may want to block your number on a call display phone by pressing *67. If you feel you must leave a message, you should say, “I’m sorry I missed you. I will try to reach you later today, this week, next week, etc.” Try to do this only once to avoid sounding desperate or annoying.

Using your phone effectively will save you valuable time and increase your productivity!

Lori Colborne, President - LSL Marketing Consultants
Lori Colborne is an international keynote speaker, consultant & author of “Innovative Marketing Made Easy!”
© 2007 Lori Colborne Used with permission

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