NOTE: A great first impression is made within the first 10 seconds of meeting somebody!
This rule is just as true on the phone. What you say in the first 10 seconds of speaking to somebody on the phone is when you’ll make your biggest impression with them.
Think about it!
Imagine that you’re a shipping decision maker and your telephone is ringing multiple times per day from freight sales agents attempting to earn your business. Freight Sales Agent 1 begins speaking with a squeaky voice, mumbles his words, and is noticeably nervous. Freight Sales Agent 2 speaks with a clear voice and pronounces his words correctly, which makes your prospect wonder if you two have spoken before.
Which agent makes the better impression? Who would you be more likely to stick around and converse with, and who would you also hang up on?
Exactly! Another important part of making your great first impression with a prospect is WHAT you say.
Question: Should you say
How are you? when your prospect answers the phone?
When your prospect picks up the phone, should you say
How are you? Or, should you say your name and introduce yourself first? Think about how often throughout each day you hear the words
How are you? When you go to the gas station. When you meet someone on the street.
What’s the line you typically hear to start a conversation? It’s usually words along the lines of
How are you today? Some hate it and would never use it. Others swear by it and use it all the time. The question is, should you use it?
Question: What’s Ted’s position on the phrase
How are you?
Here’s my position: If you’re comfortable with it and can pull it off conversationally, then say
How are you? The key here is CONVERSATIONALLY. It means to listen to their answer and reply accordingly. When you ask it with the intention of actually listening what your prospect has to say, then use it.
Remember: What’s the main goal with your calls? It’s to enter into a conversation where your prospect tells you their challenges. If using the phrase
How are you? assists you to do that, then use it. It’s a great way to break the ice. It’s the most common question to get things going. We’re conditioned to reply to this question favorably.
Question: Who shouldn’t use
How Are You?
While many people swear by this phrase, just as many swear against it. If it doesn’t feel normal and natural for you to ask it, then don’t. There’s nothing wrong with beginning a conservation by introducing yourself, if that feels more natural to you. Think about it. It just may be the first time your prospect heard a different introduction that day, and it was from You!