November 27, 2009, Newsletter Issue #75: Using the phone to contact new customers

Tip of the Week

It never hurts to pick up the phone and set up appointments to show your service offerings. Too many home-based workers are afraid of marketing, and this is the biggest hurdle you´ll need to cross to make it as a telecommuter. Use your local phone book and look for customers that fit with the service you provide. When you do any kind of "cold calling", create a spreadsheet and enter each contact you are going to call that day. Organize it so that you can keep track of all your calls, what happened during the call, and whether or not you need to follow up with a letter or have made an appointment.

Choose your target market carefully, and simply look in your local Yellow Pages for every company that is in that target market. Call each of them, one by one, and make notes on each call as you go.

Normally, you shouldn´t have to make very many calls before you are able to set an appointment, if you have done your research first and are calling the right person.

The main thing to remember is that you are offering a service, but more importantly, you are introducing yourself to fellow businesspeople. You don´t have to sell anything on your first call. Your goal is not to sell your services today. Your goal should be to introduce yourself, set an appointment, or get permission to send them your materials. This does not have to be a hard sell technique.

There is nothing to be afraid of when picking up the phone! It is perfectly natural to be nervous, but don´t let your nervousness prevent you from making that essential contact. Even those that say "No thanks" are one step closer to the one who would say "Yes, I´d like an appointment with you next week".

Here´s an idea. Call your prospects and set up appointments for a free consultation. Free consultations have worked well for many businesses, for eons, so why not give it a try for yours?

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