Identify Yourself!

Nothing raises my blood pressure faster than getting a phone call from someone who launches into their sales pitch without saying who they are and who they represent. I have listened to an entire sales pitch (that they insist isn’t a sales pitch) without knowing their name or the company they work for. Really? Isn’t telephone sales hard enough already without doing something GUARANTEED to alienate me? Who saw the value in devising a technique where you talk as fast as you can before they can hang up? People do business with people they like. And to like them, we have to know them. And it all starts with stating your name, who you represent, and why you are intruding on my time. If you skip that part, you have immediately stepped into the role of the traveling snake oil salesman, or the guy coming to sell me seventy-six trombones for a big parade.

What does this have to do with you? Probably not much, unless you’re a phone salesperson. But there is something small you can take from this to apply to situations where you have to give a speech, write an article, make a pitch, form a team, request money, interview – or ask for anything you want. Begin by stating who you are, who you represent, and your purpose. Be direct. Respect their time. State your intent in the beginning.

Wrong way:   Hey Susie! That is a beautiful top! Where did you get that? I have just got to have one. How’s your son? Has he graduated yet? Oh, you have a daughter. Well, I bet she is just as stunning as you are! Anywho… I’m not sure if you remember me, but I sat beside you last Easter. I remember because I said to myself, “Now THAT is one woman I’d like to get to know.” And now we have our chance! (Excited squeal).  As it turns out, I am in charge of Vacation Bible School this year and I would just love love love it if you would help us out a teensy bit. You would be great at crafts – do you want to take Tuesday or Wednesday?

Right way: Susie, my name is Barb and it’s nice to meet you. I’m in charge of Vacation Bible School over at Loving Arms Church, and am in the process of forming a team for this important project. May I have a moment of your time to discuss whether you would like to be involved?


Just some more advice from your wacky motivational speaker whose name is Kelly Swanson, who represents Swanson Speaks, Inc., and is here to help you stand up and stick out in a crowded market.


Motivational Speaker Kelly Swanson - called one of North Carolina's funniest women by Our State Magazine. Kelly lifts the spirits of audiences from coast-to-coast using humor, storytelling, and lives of the characters from Prides Hollow - Kelly's make believe small town. This unique approach to motivational speaking allows Kelly to break through communications barriers and connect directly to the audience's imagination.
Her powerful stories and wacky wit will make you laugh, remind you that you matter, show you how to see beyond your obstacles, and teach you how to stand up and stick out in a crowded market.
To book motivational speaker Kelly Swanson:
Motivational speaker Kelly Swanson's website

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  1. Ahhhh.  Motivational Speaker Hits Nail on Head.  Can I record this blog and have it be my voicemail message?  Thank you Kelly!!!

  2. Yes, even though I’m on the do-not call list, I sure manage to receive too many calls. My frustration is when they act like they know me….and then call me by the wrong last name!

  3. It’s always a dead give away when the solicitor doesn’t know how to pronounce Yves.  It’s not Eevez, Not eves, not why-vez, it’s Yves with a silent S, but don’t tell the tele-marketers, it’s the quickest way for us to know they don’t know who they are calling!!!

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