Why I Don't Answer the Telephone
I've been tracking my calls for the last three years through our provider, RingCentral, and I'm sorry to say that many of the unscheduled phone calls that I'm receiving come as totally cold leads from people I'm not likely to know. My scheduled phone calls are with customers, and those are terrific. But if you call me with a non-specific sales introduction or pitch or speech that I didn't request, I'll have to politely decline in 30 seconds or less.
I think that cold-calling is not going to work, moving forward, for my business, or for any business.
National Do Not Call Registry: https://www.donotcall.gov/
According to the phone log, my last 40-50 unsolicited sales calls lead to nothing productive, for the caller or for me.
It breaks someone's concentration when you call them, and some people (like me) really need to concentrate for my job as a web developer. It also harrasses people, and it causes discomfort when it is a conversation between two strangers. An unwanted phone call trying to sell something is not as good a use of time as targeted research and relationship building.
Believe me, all of us in business are interested in referrals, relationships, reputation, lead generation and developing a customer base, but I fully believe that in today's age of connectivity, it is unacceptable to call someone that you don't know and try to develop a relationship off your 30-second introduction speech.
Alternate routes to generate business:
- Ask your current customers how you can help them
- Ask for referrals from existing customers
- Start up your website and create an e-newsletter list so people choose to be connected to you
- Create a Facebook Fans page and share your deals and specials there
- Reach out over the e-mail and develop a relationship with bloggers in your field - share articles that fit their target readers and your desired market
- Go to a Meetup, BNI meeting, or chamber event - network with people in your city
- Participate in conferences - teach a seminar - share your knowledge on a panel
- Put your white paper (that's relevant to your clients) onto SlideShare
- Develop and sustain your Twitter outreach strategy
- Connect with similar, like-minded professionals in your focus area
- Create a volunteer or charity project - partner with a local non-profit - get involved with a board
- Start a blog in your space - be unique and niche - offer valuable information
Please folks, it's 2011 and your success rate through cold-calling will not be as effective as your success when you consider a strategy for helping your community, working with others, and finding valuable, targeted ways to help your customers.