Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Why Aren't Prospects Returning Your Call?

Waiting for the phone to ring, leave compelling messages
If you want prospects to return your calls give them a compelling reason to do that.

It’s tough reaching business decision makers by phone. You either get screened by the gate keeper or trapped in voice mail. That means that sales and marketers need to be smarter not dumber.

Of course, there is the legion of folks that you can reach on their cell phone, day or night, in the car, restaurant, toilette or grocery store. Those cell phone zombies answer their phone because they can’t make decisions. They just crave the ego stroking of wasting your time on the phone. That’s dumb.

I like reaching voice mail because then I can leave a specific message for my intended recipient. That message will tell them exactly why they should call me. That message qualifies valid leads and disqualifies dead ends. You don’t want everybody returning your calls. They will waste your time. You only want real leads to call you. That’s smart.

How can you do that? Invest your time thinking before you call them. Why would this person call you? What can you say to trigger that interest? What can you say that compels them to call you? They aren’t going to return your call just because you called.

Yet, many callers don’t seem to be able to leave a message to get decision makers to call them back.

Here are two examples of voice messages from Dumb and Dumber.

The names of the individuals and the companies were changed to protect the guilty - this time.

Listen to this message from Dumb.

“Hello George, This is Sue from ABC computer systems. I’d appreciate it if you’d return my call. My number is 555-555-5555.”

Look at that message. Why would you call? Who cares what she appreciates? What pain did she offer to fix? What special offer did she present? Why would you call? Perhaps, if you were bored. The message didn’t qualify return callers. Most of the return calls will be a waste of time. That's dumb.

This company had repaired my computer. I’d received this message previously. One day I was bored and curious, so I called back. Sue told me that she was calling to see if I needed their services. I was annoyed that I wasted my time in returning her call. She could have said that on her message (I told her that) and I would have appreciated her follow-up. Instead I was annoyed by her lack of thought and value for my time.

I’d appreciate if you’d tell me why you are calling and why you want me to call you.

Here’s the voice message from Dumber.

“Ah, Good morning, It’s Roger calling on behalf of Down Stream. If you could please give me a call back, ah, regarding your internet and phone services. It’s 555-555-5555. Again it’s Roger calling on behalf of Down Stream. Thank you”

Roger didn’t say my name. That suggested that he didn’t care about me. If he listened to my answering voice message he would have learned my name.

He didn’t mention a benefit. Why should I call him? He said nothing to compel an interested buyer to call. What pain could he fix?

One more dumb thing. The sentence that starts with “If you could” needs to be balanced with the promise. That sentence should run, “if you do this I will do that”. Instead it was left hanging with nil promise.

Dumb voice message Sue. Dumber voice message Roger.

If you want prospects to call you back, tell them why they should call you. Don’t be dumb. Don’t be dumber. Instead think about the needs and desires of your prospect before you call.

George Torok

Marketing Speaker

Business Speaker


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