By: Courtney Hahn
It is that time of the year again, election season. This year, technology has made it easier to campaign during this pandemic via phone banking and peer-to-peer texting. Despite the challenges this election cycle brings, American Majority Action has already got the ball rolling with phone calls and will transition to door knocking when it is safe to do so.
Phone banking is tough whether you have done it before or whether it is your first time. We want your phone banking experience to be easy and successful. So here are some helpful tips for first time phone callers.
- Smile. It sounds funny to say “smile” when you are on the phone and you cannot be seen, however the person you are talking to can hear your smile. They can hear whether you are smiling or not from the other end of the phone line. Your facial expression changes the way you feel as well as the way you sound. You will sound more enthusiastic on the phone when you smile and will ultimately have a better effect on the conversations you have.
- Let things go. You will be making hundreds of calls in one day. People will hang up on you and be rude to you. Something to help you not get discouraged is to let things go and not to dwell on it, just move onto your next call. Do not take it personally. It is a lot easier for people to be mean over the phone than it is for them to be mean in person at the door. They cannot see your face or who you are so for them it is much easier to be rude. Simply dial the next voter and carry on.
- Remember your script. Especially for first time phone callers, run through what you will be saying before you call the first number. Practice makes perfect. You want to sound confident and not mess up when you are talking to a voter. Practicing first what you will say will also calm your nerves and it will sound more natural over the phone. Try not to go off your script too much because you do not want to lie or mislead someone. Practice the script, stick to it, and you will be fine.
- Set goals for yourself. You will be making as many calls as you can in the few hours each day you set aside for phone banking. It is good to set goals for yourself to keep you motivated and on track. Before starting calls each day, write down your goals for that group of calls. If you reach those goals, reward yourself at the end of the calls. This will keep you honest and stay committed to your goals.
- Stay alert and be ready for anything. You never know what to expect with each call so expect the unexpected. Be ready for people to ask who you are and why you are working for your organization and what your organization does. Write down these things in case you are asked so you do not get caught off guard and stumble on what to say to them. It will not sound professional and you will not be taken seriously. It should be no more than a sentence or two because you do not want to lose their attention. Try to even sell yourself as well so you can really connect to the voter you are talking to and get positive answers to your survey questions. It will go so much smoother if you do this.
With these tips in mind, your first time calling potential voters will go more smoothly.