Why the telephone is your best friend

“The telephone is your best friend! Don’t be scared of the phone”!!!
I really wish I could shout this constantly from the rooftops to every business owner in this country. The amount of people who are petrified of calling their overdue customer is crazy. Just yesterday I received an email from someone owed $210 admitting they “were too chicken to call so I just email”. This really does break my heart and I shudder to think of the hundreds of millions and millions of dollars that go begging every day just because people are scared to call and ask for it. But I get it, I really do. Calling is scary. What if they get offended? What if I sound too pushy? What if they never want to do business with me again. The fear is real. But I am here to tell you that it’s all in your head. You literally have nothing to worry about. I have never, ever met anyone who has terminated the services of a supplier just because they wanted to be paid. Now I know that’s easy for a debt collector to say given this is what we do for a living. But if you ever wanted to know how effective it is, here’s a story- a business friend of mine signed up for a small accounting package. The cost was $240 per month. The company said they would invoice him, no problems. July rolls around, no invoice. August rolls around, no invoice. By the beginning of September my mate is wondering what the hell is wrong with these people, don’t they want their money? Late last week apparently they finally called and my mate paid them the $720 arrears then and there. Apparently they had an old email address which is why he wasn’t getting their invoices. When he asked why did it take so long for them to call him they said they only do as a last resort. A last resort??? Their phone call which took all of 38 seconds got them $720. $68 thousand dollars an hour. But that’s not the worst of it- because of their slackness he is now questioning whether he wants to stay with them.
I really hope this insight helps. Aim to start calling your overdue customer as soon as your invoice hits 7 days past due. But don’t be pushy- simply state it is a “Courtesy reminder” and ask if they can please make the payment today. In a very friendly tone of voice. You don’t actually need a spiel either- simply identifying yourself will often lead to them responding with “oh yes I know I haven’t paid, I am very sorry, let me do it now for you”. They will know immediately why you’re ringing. Calling shows diligence and vigilance and professionalism. Not calling shows a casualness, a disregard and blaseness that has the potential to reflect very poorly on your business. And what’s the worst thing that could happen? You will get your money!
Cheers guys
Why the telephone is your best friend

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