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The Cold Call

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It can be frustrating knowing that your future is in another’s hands. This is precisely what happens during the cold call. You pick up the phone, dial the number and hope that it is answered. You have two scenarios swimming through your head. Scenario #1: voice mail. Scenario #2: the “live” pitch.

In Scenario #1, you are relieved that you might have a life expectancy of more than 10 seconds with this account, but it means leaving an enticing enough message to get the buyer to call you back, or staging a repeat performance that entices the buyer to pick up your call the second or third time around.

But the real kicker comes during Scenario #2 when you have the full attention of the buyer (okay, let’s not kid ourselves here — we all know that when we’re on the phone we all multi-task with email and other outside interferences) and you must deliver a convincing, yet eloquent argument as to why your product is a Must Have for this certain retailer.

Delivering this important pitch is much like writing an essay or even a term paper. In this 10-second timeframe you will be introducing the product, giving arguments as to why it is the next best thing since sliced bread and effectively concluding with the hope of landing an appointment or even just a sample/pricing exercise.

When I sat on the other side of the desk, I never thought that I had the power to make or break this person’s dreams when I was listening to cold call after cold call. Now, I run through Scenario #1 and Scenario #2 long before I pick up the phone to try to land the full attention of the elusive buyer.

Sometimes it pays to be prepared, and sometimes it doesn’t. But one thing I know is that I’m at my best when I’m trying to grab the buyer’s attention — and to ultimately make them the retail heroes.

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