How NOT to solicit business

Having the same home/business number means we get a fair amount of annoying phone calls from random people. I don’t know who trains these people trying to drum up credit card business or something, but they have no idea how to make a sales pitch that you’d actually want to listen to. For one thing, at least rehearse who you’re calling and how you’re going to pronounce their name. That slight pause as they check their computer screen for the next name on the list is a dead giveaway for an upcoming dial tone. This one was pretty typical, although they actually hung up on me for once:

CALLER: Hi, is this the owner?

ME: Who’s calling, please?

CALLER: Oh, this is Brian! Is this the owner?

ME: Of what?

CALLER: Uh…(short pause)…Chert…Hollow Farm? Is this the owner?

ME: Yes.

CALLER: And how may I properly address you, sir?

ME: Well, that depends on whether we have anything to discuss.

CALLER: (hangs up).

Yeah, good job there, Skippy. In four chances, you gave me no indication why you were calling, who you were representing, or why I might be interested in whatever it is you’re offering. FAIL.

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