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HOW TO SELL ANYTHING

I Never Know How to Start a Cold Call. Any Advice?

An art consultant shares her strategy for making cold calls.

Patty Glass, the owner of the Art Co., a $600,000 art consultancy in Cincinnati, finds that she gets good results by coming clean right away. Here's one variation of her approach: "Hi, this is Patty Glass with the Art Co., and this is a cold call. I bet you get a million of these. Fasten your seat belt -- here's another one." After a humorous start, Glass makes sure she gets to the point quickly and doesn't waste the prospect's time. She's discovering that her lighthearted approach can work for others, too: She recently shared it with her latest hire. The new salesperson, Glass reports, soon generated $11,800 in sales from about 55 names on a list that the rest of the staff had considered "dead."

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