While many of us may identify with this word as a means to making an
honest living, others, however, associate this word with negative meanings such
as “It’s just another person trying to sell something” or “Here’s another
person wasting my time!” Why are these
receptionists thinking like this and what can we do about it? Would you like to hear the good or bad news
The bad news is the following: “As
long as you are making cold calls and driving in new business you will always
hear the receptionist ask you: “What Is
This Call Regarding?” What is the good
news? The good news is once you have
accepted the fact that all receptionists use this most famous question when
speaking with “people like us” then we can transfer our focus now to more creative
and innovative ways to manage and even bypass these associations that are being
made each and everyday.
We could just cut to the chase and list these creative and innovative
ways to effectively manage and bypass these associations, but let’s briefly
analyze why these associations are being made in the first place, ok?
Here are three possible reasons why receptionists are making these
In a perfect world, one would think that all receptionists do is field
calls from salespeople. Unfortunately,
we do not live in a perfect world and the truth is that there are dozens of
other tasks that are assigned to receptionists.
Our cold calls impede on their time and they see us as a distraction
rather than a benefit to them.
Boring Sales Calls
Where’s the excitement about your product and/or service? Are you bringing your personality to your
sales call? Are youing from a read
script? Do you have any idea how many sales
calls these receptionists receive each day?
Not only do they have to field calls for their company and/or boss, but
they have to field calls from boring sales reps with absolutely no personality. So if you are boring, lack personality and
reading directly from a sales script, now you can understand a few more reasons
why your call might be associated with “Here’s another person wasting my
Attention all fans of Sigmund Freud, Ivan Pavlov, Carl Jung and all fans
of prominent psychologists during the twentieth century, can you say
conditioning process? How about the theory
that people connect ideas, feelings, experiences and information by way of associations? What
I mean here, is simple, the reason why these receptionists are making these
associations in the first place is largely due to the conditioning
process. They have learned through their
array of experiences (For example, media, friends and past experiences.) to think
and respond in such a way.
So now let’s move to the juicy part, How do you manage and bypass this
most famous question: “What Is This Call
Regarding?” The receptionist is asking
you this question because they do not know who you are and they are protecting
not only their boss’s time, but their time as well. Based on this, you can imagine the degree of
resistance that you will encounter; some of the most obvious ways to reduce
resistance includes a few of the following:
Knowing or having some sort of relationship with your sales
prospect. Either you currently do
business with them, have done with them at some point in the past, you were
referred to them or even have left a number of voicemails and messages f or
If you have to ask the receptionist who is in charge of marketing (Or any
title that you are targeting.) then you have set yourself up for a lot of
resistance. Make sure that you know the
name of your prospect prior to your telephone call. If you do not have the name of your prospect
at hand then check out the company’s website for starters. This idea may seem quite obvious, but many
salespeople do not do the proper research prior to making a cold call.
How do you handle the receptionist’s most famous question if you have had
no prior contact with them or the prospect at all?Humor is the key to reducing resistance and
inspiring curiosity.In order to really
pull this off, you need two more successful personality traits, what are
they? One is confidence and the other is
a positive attitude and when these three traits are collectively combined you now
have increased your odds of getting past the receptionist and speaking with
your sales prospect.
Below are a few creative and innovative lines that you could use when the
receptionist asks, “What Is This Call Regarding?”Once you have used one of these lines to warm
up your sales call then you can state the exact reason for your call and offer
a benefit as to why your call should be transferred. Remember after each of these responses it’s
also important that you smile on the telephone as you are saying them and then
pause appropriately to hear how they respond.
“Let me ask you a
question, how would you like a raise?”
(The receptionist will respond:
“What you mean?” You reply that
you have a brilliant idea that will save their boss a lot of money. You then
explain to the receptionist that if they transfer your call to their boss and
if the results of the conversation are overwhelming positive then who do you
think they will thank? You!!! So why not transfer me, right?")
I’ve been trying to
reach (First name of prospect) for about one year now (Or list another time
frame here.), talk about persistence!
If you have responded to
their famous question with no luck then you could try this last ditch response,
“(First name of receptionist), if you were me, what would you do now?”
"Would you like my
Social Security Number before you transfer me?"
"Look, I'm making a
cold call and I've been trying to reach (First name of prospect) for (List time
frame here), do I at least get an ‘A’ for persistence?"
“This will be the most
important call that you will take today!”
"I saw (First name
of prospect) in the local paper (List the exact paper) the other day, is the
movie star out signing autographs?"
(Use this response only if you see your prospect quoted or pictured in
an online or offline medium. You can
even offer to send the receptionist a copy of the article.)
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Behind The Scenes With Mr. Cold Call™
Mr. Cold Call™ is a worldwide sensation and
claims to have made over 80,000 cold calls to date. He has been quoted
by numerous national publications such as Selling Power Magazine,
Investor's Business Daily, Successful Fund Raising and Advantage
Magazine. He has written over 65 articles on cold calling, developed a sales ratio calculator that automatically calculates your daily, weekly, monthly and yearly sales ratios, offers a custom sales script service called "The Script Responder" and finally, is the author of four best-selling ebooks with FREE email support and these titles include: