How to really aggravate people when cold calling…

According to a recent survey, over two thirds of the population are extremely aggravated by cold callers who start a call with any of the following…

‘Hi’ followed by their first name
Hi is considered totally inappropriate and annoying when receiving a cold call from a stranger as is the use of their first name. The majority of people prefer the term Mr. or Mrs. Sir or Madam was also considered acceptable by many.

I sometimes respond by saying to them –”It is Mr. King to you until I might get to know you better.”

They often hang up

How are you today?
This one really annoys me because it is so blatantly not genuine. The caller has no interest in my health whatsoever and, as far as I am concerned, the only stranger who has the right to ask me that question when I first have a conversation with them would be a medical practitioner.

I often respond with – “my health is none of your business”, or I tell them I have some terrible disease.

On a recent call I responded to that question with – “Actually I am feeling quite dreadful today.”  Their response was – “Excellent! The reason I’m calling you is…”

I hung up

Hi (first name) – this is not a sales call
We both know it is a sales call – so why start with a lie? Which is precisely what I ask them.

They often hang up

I’m calling to speak with the homeowner
My response, even though I do not have a mortgage but want to test their reaction, is sometimes – “That is the Halifax Building Society. Would you like their telephone number?”

They usually hang up.

I’m calling to speak to the business owner?
If they want to speak with the business owner or a director, it is not hard to get that information before making the call. Not asking for a specific person is totally unacceptable and unprofessional in the B2B market.

If I am feeling particularly difficult, I can have a lot of fun with this. For example: “We have 350 shareholders – which one would you like to speak with?”

They almost always hang up.

If you use any of these openers – please stop it!

If there are any other particular cold call openers that really aggravate you, please email me and I will reproduce them in a future newsletter.

Other recent research concludes that in spite of all the most modern strategies for attraction marketing, 85 percent of all new business still starts with a cold call. So if you have to cold call, or know should be cold calling more often and are not 100 percent certain your cold calling techniques are World Class, you can get my eBook titled Cold Calling Made Easy. BUT do not purchase it if you have already read Telephone Sales & Appointment Setting – How To Become World Class. It is the same book and is selling 3 x as many since I changed the title. More on the power of titles, headlines, opening statements etc. in a future newsletter.


Bruce King

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