Six Tips to Make Your Collection Calls More Succesful
Here are six tips to make your in-house collection calls more successful:
- Use a calm, firm voice. This will avoid making the customer feel threatened, and will make it much easier to negotiate payment.
- Be courteous. Right now, that customer may owe your company money. However, your company might want to have it back as a good customer someday. Therefore, collect in a businesslike manner. Remember, you may be sitting next to the debtor at the next ball game!
- Be direct. Don't beat around the bush. Be factual and to the point when discussing the amount owed and terms of payment. If you waver, the customer may not take you seriously. Surprisingly, most people will not object to unemotional statements of fact.
- Solve product complaints. If the customer complains that the product did not perform as expected or it was defective in some way, get that situation resolved immediately. If you don't, you will never collect the money.
- Ask the customer to help you. Offer to discount the invoice if the customer can pay you today. Use terminology such as, "We need to improve our cash flow. Could you help us?" Now the customer is no longer the villian, but the hero. It can help you with your business by paying its past-due account today.
- Secure payment quickly. If the amount warrants it, offer to send a courier to pick up the check.
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