- Be straightforward. Identify the reason(s) for your call.
- Ask great open-ended questions that encourage dialogue and show that you are sincerely interested and care about that particular person.
- Listen. Your supporters want to be heard. If you do it right, they’ll talk at least twice as much as you. Hopefully more. Tweet this!
- Your mission is worthy, so smile and be confident. It radiates through the phone line. I’m not kidding. People can sense how you feel right through the phone line.
- Be honest always! You WILL get found out if you lie or tell half-truths.
- Test everything. For instance, what opening lines work better than others.
- Keep a pen and paper nearby so you can take notes. You simply won’t remember each call.
- Match your energy level and tone with that of your supporter’s. Be a chameleon.
- If you made any kind of promise during the call, be sure you do what you said you were ‘gonna do.
- Send personalized, relevant, follow-up emails to those who want more information. You can also send appointment confirmations to those who agreed to meet.
- Be loose. Shmooze a bit. You can’t read a script if you really want to engage your supporters. Instead, tell stories. Tweet this!
- Be a team player. Let others in your organization know what you are doing (especially if you are outsourcing the calls to a vendor).
- Treat people how THEY would like to be treated. Especially as you develop your calling strategy.
- Use technology to be more efficient (such as CRM, auto-dialing click widgets, etc).
- Most of all, employ telemarketing as part of an integrated approach that complements other marketing activities— not as a solo, one-shot effort.
My next blog post will include the don’t’s. Or, if you can’t wait, just download this cheat-sheet.
>> 3-to-1 Major Gift Fundraising
>> 5 potentially big problems related to telemarketing for planned gifts
>> How to make the initial engagement with a planned giving prospect