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Selling by Phone

Selling By Phone: How to Reach and Sell Customers in the Nineties
Richardson
1992

This was found in a medium-sized public library in the Detroit area. Its title immediately ages it. Yes, the telephone is still an important tool in business, and some of the techniques outlined here are still useful, but the book as a whole is very dated. If they want to teach people how to be really effective with their phone, they need to talk about productivity apps, conference calls, and texting. This is not your mama’s corded, pulse-dialing phone world of 1992. A better book over all would talk about general communication techniques for selling, including social media, video, chat, email, and product webinars.

I’m never a fan of worksheet-style books for libraries, although this one miraculously made it 22 years without being written in. The worksheets included below are ok for thinking about how to make effective phone calls, but if someone relies on them to the point of writing out a script for every call they’re going to make, I can’t see that they’re saving any time. Just send an email if you’re writing that much!

I *hope* this book advises phone sellers not to EVER ask about the weather. So help me Melville Dewey if another vendor calls my library in Michigan in February from Miami or Phoenix or Los Angeles and says, “How’s the weather up there? Heh heh heh.”

-Holly

More Bad Business:

Not Your Mama’s Business Start Up

How to Work for a Japanese Boss

Bottom-Up Marketing

Mistakes = Success!

8 Responses to Selling by Phone

  • I had a vendor call from Texas and (after asking about the weather, jerk) suggest that he should send some of the Cowboys up here to help shelve books for me. They sometimes forget to bring their shirts, he said.

    I found this really invasive, and thought it brought the conversation WAY further towards “sexual” than I wanted to go with a telemarketer.

    Anyway since then I’ve kind of been mean to vendors. :/

  • I think I’d rather clean a public bathroom than make cold calls (or any calls, for that matter) to try to sell something over the telephone.

  • Wait…I can SELL my customers once they’re done buying stuff? Double profit!

  • What kind of “relationship call” are you making when your conversation goes:

    “How are you doing?”
    “Happy Thanksgiving.”
    “Hello.”

  • This must be the how-to manual that’s responsible for millions of people abandoning their land lines because all they get are telemarketer calls… 🙂

  • How to reach customers in the nineties? Cool, a time-travel book!