Ask Kathy: The Outbound Calling Woe – “I’m Not Interested”

By Kathy Sisk

When it comes to outbound campaigns, it is not realistic to assume that the prospect is sitting and waiting by his or her phone in anticipation of your call. That never happens. On the contrary, the prospect may have already been inundated with calls similar to yours, in the middle of doing something more important, or simply is not available.

When you are able to reach the prospect, he or she may not have an interest in what you are calling about. If you get any negative response early in your presentation, your method of handling that response is critical at this point. One of the most challenging parts of an outbound telemarketing call is the ability to handle a premature “I’m not interested.”

Your response to this should be the “easy close.” It will guide you through this challenge and allow you to continue with your presentation. At the very least, this will keep the door open for future contact with the prospect. The easy close sounds like this: “I respect that. If I could provide you with information that could save you [money, time, effort] on your _____, are you open to receive more information about this?”

The idea is to get the prospect to say “yes.” Get the prospect to confirm that he or she would be open to more information. This turns a negative reaction into a positive response, and helps you to nudge the process forward. Once your prospect has responded positively to you sending more information, you can move onto the next portion of the easy close: qualifying the prospect’s interest. Ask the reluctant prospect: “To ensure that you can benefit, I need to verify some information if you don’t mind.” This final portion of the easy close gets another positive response that helps you go into the next step of your presentation: probing.

When a campaign is carefully thought out, and when you diligently incorporate your training into your calls, you will gain greater confidence in handling prospects and experience more positive outcomes.

Preparation is a vital key to overcoming obstacles.

Kathy Sisk, founder and president of Kathy Sisk Enterprises Inc., is a trainer and consultant, contributing thirty-five years of expertise to the telemarketing, sales, and customer service industries.

[From Connection Magazine Jul/Aug 2015]