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Getting Past Gatekeepers – 6 Quick Strategies

If you’ve been involved in sales for any period you will have encountered gatekeepers. You clearly want to increase your sales success if you are reading this. Detailed here you will find practical strategies for dealing with gatekeepers to access decision makers (DM).

The sole focus of gatekeepers is to screen calls that don’t qualify for the DM’s time. Your sole focus then is to show that your call is critical and must be answered by the DM.
  • Turn Gatekeepers into Allies: treat them with respect, humor and compassion.

Understand their process, you are either relevant or not. You may need a few calls to understand their process to understand what relevant looks like.
Take the time to establish rapport with each person you come in contact with. Whether or not they’re the actual person you were wishing to speak to, they are actual people – deserving of your courtesy, respect and attention.
  • Realize Your Value to the Gatekeeper – You can make them look good for passing a useful call through.

What would happen if the gate keeper didn’t put through a useful call to the DM? Speak in terms of the problems you can solve for the DM without pitching to the gatekeeper. What you’re doing is making it worth their while to pass you through. Create a list of benefits they will miss if you don’t speak to them now.
  • Calling before and after gatekeeper’s shift will get you through directly.

DM’s often work long hours and feel less pressured outside of office hours. Believe it or not the gatekeeper has to take a break at some point.
  • Use each call to gather information

Each call can be useful if you know what your outcome is. By asking focused questions you can gather accurate information on the DM’s schedule and current events at the company. You’re also interested in insights into the personality profile (e.g. introvert or extrovert). For instance, the best and worst time to call. How do you pronounce and spell your DM’s name?
  • Use more than one method to make contact.

Calls alone may or may not result in success. Consider using emails, social media or even a business networking to make initial contact. Ask decision makers and their gatekeepers the most convenient way to communicate. Some managers prefer e-mail, others formal letters or calls after work. Once you have this information, play by their rules.
  • Indicating you are “Returning the DM’s call”

This automatically elevates your call’s importance in gatekeeper’s eyes and will get your call put through more quickly.
Use the above strategies get through to the decision makers you need to get through to create more business opportunities and thus close more sales.

Remember the relevant you are the greater your chances of access – Be Relevant and have fun. 

You might actually make a new life-long friend!


 

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