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Cold Calling Nightmare Comes True

Posted by Ilise Benun on

It's Cold Calling Day. Ugh. I schedule this task about a week after I send out hard-copy materials to people I haven't met but may use my services. Cold Calling Day is never on a Monday and never on a Friday and always between the decent hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. I open up my marketing outreach list and then I open lots of marketing articles and blogs to read between calls and keep my energy up.

Today was supposed to be a good Cold Calling Day because my prospects weren’t really cold. A client who no longer needs my services but thinks I do a great job gave me twenty referrals. Why wouldn't his contacts want my help?

It started out smoothly. I left seven left messages and got one request for materials by email. I thought I'd get another easy one out of the way by calling a gentlemen who might even remember me – I planned his retirement party at the Guggenheim back when I was in-house at his law firm. 

I picked up the phone with enthusiasm, dialed and was confronted with the first wave…the assistant. After I had thoroughly convinced her I was not some loony tune but a viable human being worthy of speaking to her boss, I heard him…"hello?"

I took a breath and was about to speak my first words to him when, it turned out, it was not my turn to speak! "Who are you? I don't know you!" came from the earpiece.

"Oh, Mr. Snappish*, I'm Ginger Donnan, an event planner. I used to work at your law firm and I planned your retirement party, the managing partner's retirement party just last year and we have another mutual acquaintance at the Generous* Foundation. I sent you some materials last week and I was calling to make sure that you received them."

At this point, I figured Mr. Snappish would turn into Mr. Semi-Niceish, but no. 

"I did not receive your package because it was probably intercepted by the people who stop unsolicitated materials at the door. We don't use event planners and we don't need your help. Goodbye."

Shaking, I hung up the phone, highlighted the rest of the contacts that still need to be called and closed the spreadsheet. That would be it for the day. 

I then picked the phone back up and used it to call my dear friend Deidre ( for some marketing therapy. She suggested the MarketingMix community may have some insight and encouragement to share. 

Has anyone else had their worst nightmare come true? If so, what did you do?

*Names have been changed to protect the mean and the innocent (in that order).

Thanks to Ginger Donnan of New Jersey-based, Ginger Donnan Events (

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