Throughout the past few weeks, I have had the opportunity to contact RTA’s partners about donating event giveaways for the 40+ events RTA is hosting this summer. Most of my communication with these partners has been over the phone, which has been much harder than I originally expected. However, the process has gone smoother as I have gained more experience in how to make these calls personal and beneficial to them.

Below are a few pointers that I have learned along the way (with pet memes inspired by the adorable kittens that visited Brokaw today courtesy of the Cleveland APL):

  1. Write a brief script
    • Have a good idea of why you are calling and what you plan to say. Awkward silence is the WORST over the phone, especially if you have not previously met the person you are calling. Writing a script will make you confident on hitting key points in the conversation. However, do not read directly off your script like a robot. Instead, make your conversation personal just by briefly discussing your notes.

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  1. Call at the right time
    • Avoid calling on a Monday when people are slammed with work or a Friday when they are wrapping up their week. The best time to call is Tuesday through Thursday either early morning or late afternoon.

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  1. Be Confident
    • Attitude is everything when it comes to going out of your comfort zone to call someone that you’ve never met. Your positive (or negative) attitude is easily displayed in your voice and sets the tone for the conversation. Go into each call with a positive mindset by thinking “I can do this!”

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  1. Introduce yourself/explain why calling
    • You’ve got about 10 seconds to prove that you are worth talking to so be quick to introduce yourself and explain why you are calling. Prove to the person on the line that they could benefit from the conversation.

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  1. Always follow up
    • Leave the call on good terms and immediately follow up through email. After calling RTA’s partners about the summer events, I send them specific details about the dates and times so they can discuss the opportunity with their marketing team. This also keeps me fresh in their mind in a written documentation of what we discussed on the call.

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  1. But don’t abuse the relationship
    • Be patient and give each partner time to think over what you talked about on the phone. It may take many attempts for them to make a solid decision or even answer the phone at all. Do not bombard them with emails, phone calls and voicemails. Instead, give them time to consider their options with their team by spacing out your calls
  2. Keep track of your latest activities
    •  Avoid making the mistake of awkwardly calling a partner when you just talked an hour before. Keep track of the latest status of your call with each partner to stay organized on the latest updates.

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Slowly but surely, I have experienced success in not only reaching clients, but also receiving event donations for the RTA. I am no longer intimidated by calling someone I don’t know and asking for their help. I’ve definitely made the right calls by following my helpful tips.

 

 

 

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