Monday, September 24, 2012

Getting Past The Gatekeeper

Getting Past The Gatekeeper

If you have ever sold to businesses then you know exactly what this means. For those of you that have no idea what i'm talking about, a gatekeeper is someone that screens calls for the decision maker you are trying reach.  So what are the best methods for getting past the gatekeeper?  

1. Be friendly:  It's very simple.  Nothing will put a stop to your access to a business owner like being rude to the person that answers the phone.  They are just doing their job.  Be friendly and cordial at all times.  If they like you, they'll pass your message to right person.

2. Do your research before you call:  Nothing says "sales call" like you saying, "can I speak to the owner or decision maker?"  Know who your target is before you pick up the phone.  I always visit the website of the business to gather as much info as I can. Usually the owner's name will be in the "about us" tab or "contact us" tab.  When you ask for them by name, you're more likely to get transferred.

3. Don't leave a message:  Chances are it's not going to get passed on anyway and you are wasting your time.  If they do take it down, it's mixed in with other "sales messages" and it's probably not getting called back.  The best thing to do is to email the business owner through the website or find their email address under the "contact us" tab on their website.

Business to business sales are tough, but if you get past the gatekeeper and get to talk to the decision maker, it's much easier