Four Simple Tips for Selling Products by Phone

I’ve been housebound for about 3 weeks, suffering from Gastro, Severe Vertigo, and Tinnitus.

Consequently, I have had to deal with the 3 or 4 telephone calls each day that, according to the person ringing, are not selling anything. Yet, ultimately, they are.

What has rattled me today is not that they call me – but they fail to sell themselves properly, if at all.

If the people employed are done so for the communication skills, then someone is failing to realise that communication is not just about speaking, it is about listening.

After the last phone call, I was so angry with the caller that I wrote these 4 important points in less than 5 minutes. I can only hope that someone out there who runs a call-centre reads and installs these ideas into the telephonists:

Dear perpetrator of the telephone centres that call households oh-s0-many times each day, here are few tips that MAY keep the house-bound on the line.

#40 On the Dog and Bone 1. Ask questions, don’t assume.
Rather than jumping straight into your spiel, ask if the home-bound is actually applicable to receive your product. This will save both of us a lot of time.

2. Explain yourself.
Whilst you might think your standard regimented spiel is perfectly written, I will ask questions of you. Particularly who you are, who you represent, why you are calling me, and how the frak you got my number. If you cannot explain these few facts, you have failed representing the business you are trying to sell.

3. Have alternative spiels.
How I hate your spiels, your pre-written script, your incredibly non-descrip description of your product. When I interrupt (and, oh, I will!), have an answer – don’t keep repeating yourself. If you cannot talk, I won’t bother.

4. Listen!
When I have a question, listen to my question. Don’t repeat yourself. Don’t repeat yourself. Don’t repeat yourself. Stop, Breathe, Listen. Listening to voice mannerisms, for huffing in exasperation, for nothing (because I will be silent while you rant through your spiel), and for dial-tone. If you don’t listen, neither do I.

The next time one of you call me, I trust you are listening.

Oh, You know what I really should do? Once they state who they are (which they amazingly rarely do!), stop and say…

Gotham Wallpaper

Before you go any further, I should let you know that I am recording this call so I may go through it again later.
I am doing this because as a human I cannot retain that much information all at once.

Even if I am not recording it, it would be interesting to see how they respond, if at all. I’d hope I’d hear more dial-tone than spiel.

That’s it. For now. I may add to this list. Particularly if I am stuck at home much longer. Looking forward to going back to work!


Yes, I’m Finally on Twitter

Although I have been hovering on the edge of finally accepting twitter as an acceptable tool for quite some time now, Neil Creek has finally pushed me into that chasm of finality:

I finally have twitter.

Scary but true, I’ve moved over to the dark-side.

But I feel I should explain my reasoning. After all, I did make it very clear that I disliked twitter, very much so … therefore this is a most profound turn-around for me.

I tend to write a lot of little statements to myself with the idea that I could expand on them at a later time. This is my current process for informing the universe of my thoughts…

  1. When I watch the evening news or read about the atrocities around the world through my many RSS feeds I often proclaim my thoughts on these subjects.
  2. I rush for pen and paper to write these amazing ideas down. Which end up as scrawls as I recall the exact words. Which then get transcribed to the computer.
  3. Yes, the details change a little at that stage, and the original thought process is twisted into something new. Well, that’s that, and that moment disappears into the archives of my computer.

So now I have hundreds of  un-expanded potential posts on a variety of subjects!

So my twitter is filling with my  jottings, moments, proclamations – and promotions of my photography and tshirts!

You can respond to my reasoning, disagree with my declarations, or agree with my annoying absenteeism. (The latter because I probably won’t respond to your opinion too soon. I like to dwell… but that I’m sure you realise already!)

Magpie in Hand

So let’s get started.

If you have a Twitter account, or if you’d like to sign up and find out what saying that doesn’t warrant any more than 140 characters, add “eztephen” to your contact list!

Wait, what? You’ve been hiding under a rock for a few years and have not heard of ‘Twitter‘? According to the peeps that run the show, here’s their description of the online tool:

“It’s a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing? Bloggers can use it as a mini-blogging tool. Developers can use the API to make Twitter tools of their own. Possibilities are endless!

And if you believe all of that, you’ve got rocks in your head. Let’s just say it’s a simple way to get your word out into the public domain without too many words. Everyone got their tin-foil hats on? This next bit might be fun…

PS. Soon to be available as a mini-blog to read on my website.