1. Call and ask for the Sales Department.
Talking with salespeople can be an excellent approach. It’s amazing how one salesperson will be willing to help out another salesperson.
When asking for assistance, be sure to offer to help them in finding potential leads and contacts.
2. Rather than asking the gatekeeper for the person you want to speak to, begin the call by asking them the same questions you would ask your prospect.
Many times the gatekeeper will realize they can’t answer the questions and wind up connecting with the person and/or department who can.
3. Call back before 8 AM or after 5 PM.
Most gatekeepers work traditional hours, so calling either before 8 or after 5 may allow somebody else to answer the phone, “How can help you?”
I’m always surprised at how people behave differently knowing there’s a holiday coming. Calling during a holiday week may very well result in speaking with the gatekeeper when they are in a completely different mood.
5. Call one or two digits off from the phone number you’ve been calling.
When the person answers, be upfront and say who you’re looking to speak to.
6. Call and ask for Accounts Receivables.
Every company is eager to collect all of the money they can, and by asking for that department, you’ll get connected. When you do get connected, be upfront and state who you’re looking to speak to.
7. Call at different times of the day or over lunch.
Everyone takes breaks, and many times the person who relieves the gatekeeper for lunch and/or breaks does not take the same approach as they gatekeeper would. That person filling in may very well put you through.
8. Let your personality come through and allow the gatekeeper to see you as a normal person who is merely doing their job, just like them.
9. Call a different division or location, if the company has one.
Use the other location as a way to learn who you should speak to when you do call the location you’re trying to reach.
10. Don’t allow one rejection by a gatekeeper to stop you from calling again.
Persistence can and will payoff.
Bonus: Don’t take it personally.
If you allow a rejection by a gatekeeper to negatively impact you, there is little chance you will ever be successful.
The beautiful thing about be being blocked by a gatekeeper is the same thing is most likely happening to your competitor. Big difference is your competitor is probably blowing off the opportunity, leaving the door wide open for you once you get past the gatekeeper.
I’ve seen many situations where huge sales have been made after getting past the gatekeeper.
Copyright 2015, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Selling: Win the Sale Without Compromising on Price.
I like 70% of what your post has to offer but numbers 1, 5, and 6 strike me as slightly unethical. I find that most decision makers want to find out how you got to their desk. While they are viable options to get a conversation they are also options to get you black listed. It would be good to get your success rates with the all the above strategies.