It’s Okay to Toss the Script

Yesterday I received a call from the New York Blood Center thanking me for my recent platelet donation and welcoming me to the donor family. I have been a regular blood donor for years with the Central New Jersey Blood Center, but recently gave locally in my home community of Marlboro, NJ to help a local youth group. It turned out that this blood drive was run by the New York Blood Center.

I get called all the time to remind me that I’m eligible to donate because my blood type is O-, making me a universal donor.

What struck me yesterday was that the woman on the other end was reading from a script and not listening to my response. I kept telling her that I was a regular donor in New Jersey and she kept reading her script, thanking me for being a donor, telling me my blood type was O- and that they looked forward to having me donate in the future. Whenever, I mentioned my regular donations down in Shrewsbury, she said okay and moved on to the next line of the script. What I was trying to tell her was that I would continue to donate blood and do so at my normal blood center. She was pleasant enough, but it gave me pause to think how many businesses lose customers because the person on the other end gets frustrated with being read to and not listened to.

It is essential for companies, small business owners and individuals alike to realize that the voice on the phone may be the first contact that person has with your brand, company or project. Sure, it’s important from a marketing perspective to get your message across. However, it is also vital that the person delivering the message be attuned to the responses coming from the other end of the phone. By listening closely, that messenger may be able to hit on something that will turn the prospect into a customer, all because they picked up on a certain nuance or desire of that individual because they were listening to their responses. It’s something I try to have everyone at iMedia Public Relations  adhere to when dealing with media, clients and potential partners. You never know what key tidbit you will pick up by listening and not worrying about getting your views across first.

Make sure when delivering a message that you’re listening. And, after reading this, think about donating to the next blood drive in your community. It will be a great “call” on your part.

Tom Cosentino

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