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Need bookings - Need encouragement to get on the phone

Bren706

Senior Member
Gold Member
Mar 21, 2007
2,395
27
Okay, I went inactive in April (submitted the 1 April show in May) after having a record February and a pretty good March. I have a show next week, but still do not have the guest list. I have a booth at month end. I have been making customer care calls, and got an order for a few margarita mixes, call later in the summer, and an adjustment and other similar responses, but no solid bookings yet. I have to admit, I should me making many more calls than I have been. The booking leads I have had are either call me later in the summer, or ones I have left voicemail after voicemail.

I know I need to continue on with those customer care calls, and even just pick up the phone and call every contact from A to Z, but that darn phone fear is nagging at me. I remember a thread a few years ago that Koolotus (Cheryl Batcher) posted that she did that (started at the letter A contacts and went right down the line), and I tried to find that post for encouragement but have had no luck.

So now I am reaching out to you for words of encouragement (Ok, I know, JUST DO IT!, LOL!). come on, give me a kick! I have been in the business for 5 years. The first 3, I was in NC, and then I moved back home to MA, so some of the older contacts would be calls for possible sales or catalog shows.
 

byrd1956

Senior Member
Gold Member
Sep 5, 2007
2,266
77
I know exactly what you mean. Last Fri. I spent all day calling and updating info. I did talk to a few future hosts and left lots of messages. My goal for tomorrow is to finish my short list. I have a show this weekend and several catalog show that should be closing soon, but at least 2 of those have been changing from month to month because I think they think I am suppose to be getting the orders for them, although they will not share any contact info. (I told them I would be glad to call or e-mail their friends and family about their catalog show or Relay for Life fundraiser. So, all I can really say to you is pick up the phone. Make 3 calls until you talk to 3 people. Then, make 3 calls..... It will be my mantra tomorrow....
 

pchockeymom

Veteran Member
Jan 1, 2011
1,522
27
I find when I get in these ruts, I need a "reason" to call. I like your idea of calling a-z. You could tell everyone you're making sure you have updated info, especially email, because we are changing to a new system and you want to be sure they are still receiving your newsletter. Then ask if they've seen our new grilling products, tell them how fabulous they are, and how fun grilling shows are-they're all the rave. Ask, "what would you think about getting together with your friends for a grillin' and chillin' party? We could make our incredible bbq chicken pizza on the grill and some margaritas?" Go from there.
 

Ginger428

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Mar 6, 2006
4,470
5
If you don't get bookings, you won't be able to come to Leadership & hang out with Yvonne & the girls in Sept. I'll look for the thread you want, but I won't give it to you till you get 2 bookings.... ;)
 
Nov 9, 2011
6
0
Brenda, I was feeling really frustrated early in the month. I had a great vendor show with 6 possible show leads and had all kinds of motivation. I came home and got vm for ever single one of them. I called 3 times without messages and then left 3 vm messages! I couldn't reach anyone if I was standing right next to them! It's deflating! I let it go for a couple of weeks and started going through them again and guess what... I got 2 shows booked from them!! The moral of my story is keep your chin up. You'll have one of those days when everything falls into place. making cold calls is the worst! I agree with the person who said call with a purpose, it makes it a lot easier.
 

Bren706

Senior Member
Gold Member
Mar 21, 2007
2,395
27
Thanks Ginger :). Unfortunately, it just isn't in the budget for me to go to Leadership. We are broker than broke, all the more reason for me to get my hiney in gear and start having record breaking sales each month :).
 
Mar 28, 2012
19
1
Brenda,
I am no expert at this by far, but I have a couple ideas that may help.
I started in August and business was great until Dec. and then I had a hard time getting more than two booking each for Jan and Feb., so I decided to try something new.
At every show I do a drawing for a FREE show. They get very excited and several people want to win the FREE show. I do two drawing with your drawing slips one for a FREE cookbook and one for the FREE show. I tell them if they do not want to be in the drawing for the Free show to put an X on the back. So now you have one booking you can count on and you know who else may book. Then I ask everyone at check out even if they have an X on the back. You would be surprised how many with the X on the back say yes and still book.
At the end of the month I go through my drawing slips and I pick out 3 slips that did not have the X on the back and I call them and tell them that they won my end of month drawings and I give away 3 more FREE shows.
When you do the FREE shows you control the recipe. I pick out one recipe that I am offering for the month for FREE shows. It usually cost me about $15. Then keep your receipts a and use it as a tax write off.
Next thing I started doing is if you know anyone having a garage sale ask them if you can set up a booth. I never thought this would work but I get tons of bookings from garage sales.
I hope this helps. I have a couple other ideas also if you need more ideas just let me know. Most important, never give up you can do this.

Pam
 

Bren706

Senior Member
Gold Member
Mar 21, 2007
2,395
27
Here is a thread I actually posted a few years ago and found last night. Some great advice :).

http://www.chefsuccess.com/f2/phone-phobia-bookings-great-info-42628/

I think my phone phobia issue is actually knowing what to say (how to open the conversation). I have actually called some customers recently from 3-4 years ago, and they were quite happy to hear from me. They won't turn into cooking show bookings because they are out of state now, (I moved) but it could result in sales or catty show bookings.

I need to work on those past due customer care calls from the last year and a half too :) (those will be local).
 
Last edited:
May 23, 2011
14
0
Hi Brenda,

Thanks for your post. You aren't the only one who doesn't have anything scheduled, needs to make the calls, but is having difficulty finding the motivation to pick up that thousand pound phone.

Like you, I had several excellent months in a row with top sales on our team and #5 in our area organization, but now I'm in a black hole. (It does give encouragement that I'm not the only one...)

I'm also LOVING the suggestions and will have to get my rear in gear and use them.

Thanks for the encouragement!
Cheryl
 

Ginger428

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Mar 6, 2006
4,470
5
Thanks Ginger :). Unfortunately, it just isn't in the budget for me to go to Leadership. We are broker than broke, all the more reason for me to get my hiney in gear and start having record breaking sales each month :).

Awwwww sorry to hear that, will I get to see you at Fall Launch?
 

Bren706

Senior Member
Gold Member
Mar 21, 2007
2,395
27
Yup! Wouldn't miss that! And it's even closer to me than Hartford :).
 
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