“When I am cold calling, what should I leave on a voice mail message to get a call back”? I get this question about once a week and yes; it’s the $100,000 question. First of all there is no miracle answer to this question, even in the best sales training process. If there were, and I could share it, I would be living on the beach in Hawaii drinking pina coladas with my toes in the sand. I will tell you, when cold calling and getting a message machine, I believe, when in doubt, don’t leave one.
Here are some reasons why you shouldn’t leave a voice mail message:
1. The prospect will hear your name and the name of your company, and, not recognizing either, will delete your message without listening to the rest of what you’ve said.
2. The prospect will hear your “pitch” and delete it, because unless he has been thinking about what you have to offer at that particular time, he is too busy to act on it.
3. The prospect will hear your one-way communication and be somewhat frustrated, because there is no opportunity to ask any questions. Then, he will hit “delete,” and click to the next message without thinking about it again.
4. You may say something in your message that you assume is important to the prospect. And we all know what happens when you assume…
5. Most importantly, the more times you leave a message, the more your name and your company’s name is burned into his memory, negatively.
So what is the answer? Find alternative ways to prospect. If you read anything that I publish, you know that networking and building strategic alliances in your community is the best way to go.
When it comes to cold calling I will tell you again there is no perfect answer to the voice message question. But there are a few things that have worked for some.
I truly do believe less is more. The more information you leave, the more opportunity for the prospect to decide that he is not interested in what you have, even if he doesn’t fully understand what that is.
If you are going to call someone, have a legitimate reason for the call. For example, look on their web site to see if there may be a connection to something that you do. Read about them in the paper or on-line and use what you have read to call with some educated reasons to connect and some good, thought out questions to ask them to see if there is a match.
Unfortunately the lost art of cold calling is just that. Sales training doesn’t have miracle answers to this question. You need to be much more creative in reaching prospects and see if they are a fit for you. Don’t forget the statistics, today, with voice mail you make, for every 100 calls you are lucky to actually speak to five people live and that don’t even mean a decision maker. So with all of this non-supporting information on cold calling, what’s your plan B?
Some words Are better Than others innit?