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Old February 8, 2002, 09:21 PM
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Default Don't read this if you are easily offended


In a word, your phone script sucks. I don't want to anger or hurt you, as I can see that you put a lot of time and effort into it, but I can clearly tell that you are new to this.

I am a former telemarketing warrior who has made over 100,000 phone calls. I have worked at several of the 'boiler-room' joints and have also done a ton of cold-calling in real estate. Your script is similar to those annoying phone calls you receive when you are busy stuffing your face with your dinner. I guarantee that you will not get past the first paragraph with 95% of your phone calls.

The trick to cold-calling is to not talk AT the person, but WITH them. Your script is a good example of what I call 'verbally-puking', which most of those dinner-time calls are. (Also, realize that most of those so-called telemarketers have been at their job less than 2 months... most quit within 8 weeks.)

Instead, ask open-ended questions. Always remember that the person who asks the question is the person who is in charge of the conversation. Your list of questions should naturally flow from one point to the next and lead to a close.

For example, here is my script when I was cold-calling in real estate:

Hello Mr. Jones, this is Stan with Re/Max.

When do you folks plan on moving?
How long have you lived at this address?
Where did you folks move from?
How did you happen to pick this area?
If you WERE to move, where would you go next?
When would that be?
You do realize that it could take 6-9 months to get a home sold in this market sometimes, so my next question to you is, do you want to be gone in 6 months, or just getting started?
How about I come by and take a look at your property. Would Thursday at 7 work, or would Friday at 8 be better for you?

You'll notice that all questions are open-ended... they can't say 'no'. It leads them to talk about their situation and creates an opening for you to plug your product or service. Also, realize that they are doing the majority of the talking, and they will like you MORE because they were able to talk about themselves and their situation (it's an ego thing... everyone loves to talk about themselves).

I realize that cold-calling can be a daunting task. I always found that making the first call of the day was always the hardest one to make, but once I started, I could get on a roll.

I am getting rather lengthy here, but I have a few additional pieces of advice:
1. Just because the person on the other end of the phone can't see you doesn't mean that they can't hear you frown. Make sure to smile... it can be heard.
2. Try making calls standing up. After all, if you are making a presentation in the boardroom, you'd be standing.
3. This one is related to #2... get a headset so that you can use your hands to talk. Your body language controls your tonality.
4. Know your script inside and out, backwards and forwards. If you are trying to remember what to say, you cannot concentrate on your tonality. Even worse, if you are reading your script, the person on the other end can hear it... they'll think that you don't know what you are talking about. A good way to memorize is what I call the 'Jack Nicholson' method. Jack makes over 20 mil a movie, so I think we can learn something from him. When Jack gets a script, he reads it out loud as fast as he can 10 times in a row. Try it, it works.

Sorry for the long post, but I have studied the art of cold-calling, and I want to see you succeed.

Best of luck,

Local Emarketing

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