Bloggers are the intrepid adventurers and pioneers of our shifting and changing social media landscape. We’re not afraid to learn new things, try new platforms, debate new ideas. We’re super connected and followed by thousands as we brazenly hit ‘friend’, ‘connect’, ‘follow’ building our networks and reach.
All done on our phones no less, because we’re so up with the latest technology, oh so smart.
But there’s one thing most of us are afraid to do. It’s not even a new thing. In fact, when observing the dextrous texters of generation now, it seems it’s fast becoming a lost art. In our mobile, flexible, working online lifestyles we’re happy to do anything on our phones BUT the one thing it was originally designed to do – call someone. And no, your Mum or your BFF don’t count. We’re talking about something that can help advance your cause as a blogger, a brand, a business.
The one action that will set you apart from the 99 other bloggers when it comes to opportunities is picking up the phone and making a call.
Not another email landing in an inbox of thousands. Not another bland media kit that positions you as another ‘insert niche here’ blogger that charges $x for a sponsored post. A phone call – the one action that can connect you with another human being who will take notice. It’s an opportunity to be heard and not misread. It’s the chance to ask questions and learn how you can help them. It’s a shot to plant a seed of an idea that you can follow up with a proposal.
5 tips for a successful phone call with an agency or brand
Know who you’re calling. Maybe you received a press release or pitch – call them back. Use LinkedIn to search the company and find the appropriate contact, or ask your fellow bloggers if they have a contact.
2 Know your goal
Have a specific goal – even if it is as simple as getting up the nerve to introduce yourself and your blog – a great start.
3 Write a script
You don’t need to read it like a robot, but when you’re nervous it can help to have the words there if you need them.
4 Take a deep breath, they’re not the enemy
Most people want to help you, or help you find the person that can. There’s no need to be nervous, especially if you’ve got 1-3 under control.
5 When to leave a voicemail message
So you make the call and get voicemail. Do you leave a message? If it’s your first attempt then sometimes it’s better to call back and try and get them in person. If it’s your 4th attempt, then leave a short courteous message, stating your name clearly and repeat your phone number twice to make it easier for them to get it down without having to listen again.
So there it is. We’re great at online conversations, but sometimes you just need to keep it simple and low tech. Make a personal connection offline, start a relationship and explore the opportunities.
Kyrstie @ A Fresh Legacy says
This is a great post Laney. I recently had this same conversation with a few bloggers at a conference I attended. Most of them never use the phone to connect with brands or PR. They were horrified that I have my phone number on my business card. I like to use the phone, it is efficient and although it can be nerve wracking, generally the outcomes, or understanding is immediate. If I have more than a couple of questions to ask of a brand or PR I generally make a phone call. One phone call is all it takes to create a connection, have a 5 minute discussion with an outcome or clear understanding and then move forward without a chain of frustrating emails to work through. I can say with confidence that this is not just a roadblock for bloggers. I found the same thing in corporate life, people prefer to email their responses/questions.
Laney Galligan says
You’re absolutely right Kyrstie – one phone call can save a bunch of emails (and we all needs more of those, right? Ha ha!). It also speeds the process up massively. Also, having your phone number available also makes you that much more accessible then the blogger who doesn’t. You can always follow up with an email to clarify what you discussed, for those who like a ‘paper’ trail!
CE Papas: the merrymaker sisters says
Hi Laney! This was an AWESOME post! Great reminders. We often find ourselves sticking to online conversations so we’ll take the leap and make some calls! Yay! e + c
Laney Galligan says
Excellent! I look forward to hearing about your experiences making calls. Let me know how you go!
Amy McEntee says
Retro communication – love it. Great advice, and a sure way to stand out in the crowded world-wide-web.