I do get an awful lot of cold sales calls here at Breckland Orchard HQ……I try and be my very politest but sometimes even my patient nature is tested. Here’s a couple of memorable ones from the past two days.
 CARD PAYMENTS
Now this really was a random one, because I don’t use any kind of card payments. I told the person at the end of the phone that I didn’t think it would be relevant as I didn’t use cards. She then got a bit haughty and asked me to tell her about my business. ‘Haven’t you looked me up on line before calling?’ I asked her back. ‘No’ was the answer [at least she was honest]. We talked a little and when I told her again I didn’t think it was suitable, she said I needed to stay on the line whilst she directed me to her colleague, who would take me through why I should be using a card payment scheme. I was polite [I always am] and held on the line whilst said colleague came on the line and we went through the whole rigmarole again. Eventually he said he would ‘close down my enquiry’ [I’d never enquired] and we left it at that. Phew! 7 minutes, 38 seconds of my life dedicated to a company who hadn’t done their leg work in terms of finding out about me, and even then didn’t want to listen. I’ll never get that 7 minutes, 38 seconds back……….
 MULTI MEDIA SCREENS
Now this person was sneaky, and had at least done their leg-work because they demanded to be speak to me saying ‘I’ve specifically been asked to call her back’ [errrrr…no, we’ve never spoken before]. That wasn’t a great way to start the call, as it didn’t exactly establish trust. Did I want to advertise on 16ft interactive screens in London? No I replied. And then it was a couple of minutes of broken record because they really did want to tell me how revolutionary the technology was, and how amazing the screens would be. But still not of interest, no matter how amazing the technology.
 EXHIBITION DISPLAYS
I get lots of exhibition display companies phoning me up – it comes as par for the course with exhibiting at Trade Shows….companies trawl the exhibitor listings seeing if you want new displays. Someone called me up this morning who was just gloriously happy, was a great ambassador for her company and seemed to both listen and be interested. All that in a 90 second call was a pretty amazing feat. I don’t need any exhibition equipment but I’ll keep their details on file.
 TECHNICAL BAMBOOZLE
I think I may need to buy something……but I’m getting bamboozled with technical jargon. I’m an average Joe, with no knowledge of this particular industry, and I think the person on the other end of the phone may have forgotten that. I’m trying to buy [really I am] but I’m finding it hard……
So what has all this led me to learn?
- Do some research on who you’re calling, and their company
- Have some short questions to establish if there is a need
- Listen to the answers you get back
- Be polite
- Explain things as easy as you can…..take out all the technical jargon that customers just won’t understand.