Enough with the cold calls, already
I’m not sure if it’s the state of the economy, or what’s happening in new media and publishing, but the number of cold calls I have been getting from B2B telesales people is on the rise. There are so many unknown numbers coming up on my caller ID here at work, that I have taken to Googling a number before I pick it up (sorry, Mom, that I missed your call, but you weren’t using your regular phone, so I had no idea it was you.)
Everyone has got a company that I can outsource work to, whether it’s interior design, page layout, printing, indexing or worse, some facet of ebook production. But here’s the thing – if these people took 2 minutes to Google me they’d know I do none of these things. I’m the director of marketing for a technology book publisher. I have in house staff to handle most of the things I need done every day, from marketing and publicity to design and copywriting. If I do need to outsource, odds are I go through our media buyer or publicity team and they handle that. If not, I bet I’m going to do a little research to find someone in the field who has been highly recommended or has a really great web site that lists their accomplishments.
Maybe it’s a trend, but the people who do get through to me are very pushy. They REALLY want to set up meetings with me to discuss their services. They’re going to be in NY anyhow, and would 2pm next Tuesday work? When I say no, and no thank you, it’s a really hassle to try and get them off the phone. At home, the few telemarketers we get are disconnected with a polite “no thanks and please put me on your do not call list.” At work, it’s harder to hang up on them that way, but it’s going to be coming to that soon. I’m no more interested in talking to them than I am to send them to someone in the company who might be better suited to hear the pitch. By that point in the phonecall, I’m so pissed off that it’s just better if we end things there and then. I spent one summer telemarketing, and I know it’s rough work, no question. But when a customer is genuinely not interest in your products because she wouldn’t have a slightest chance of ever using them, back off.
So instead of reaching out to me, do something else to make yourself known to me. Make me come to you. Put up a great web site that shows off your best work. Do some outreach on a social network site like LinkedIn. Set up a Twitter account and learn how to converse with customers. Just stop calling me already, dammit.