If you have clout, use it!

Last week I made a couple phone calls to Gail’s Harley-Davidson. Both times a receptionist answered and immediately said, “Can you hold?” As a knee-jerk reaction, I said “Sure.” Next I heard Gail’s voice doing a very well constructed recommendation for a third-party company. The first time I heard it, I didn’t focus on what she was doing. But, hearing the pitch a second time made me really appreciate what a smart business woman she is!

Her motorcycle dealership is a very busy place during the riding season. She employs scores of people and her business gets hundreds, if not more than a thousand calls every day. Due to the volume, nearly everyone gets put on hold.

Gail has a great reputation in this town. If she says another business is one that you can trust to deliver a good value, well you can bet that they are trustworthy!

Gail has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more than a million in advertising and marketing to sell motorcycles. Meanwhile, her own personality is very well integrated with the local biker scene and the growing market for Harley-Davidson motorcycles.

Gail, I’m almost certain, is selling her on-hold messaging! Or, maybe it is part of trade agreement with the vendor she is recommending. Either way, I’m impressed that Gail saw this easy-t0-overlook opportunity to leverage the audience she has worked so hard to create.

What about you? Do you have an audience of people that you can influence? Do you have on-hold messaging, events, or advertising where you can share some of the limelight? What about email, your website, or your Facebook page? How can you monetize the audience that you have created?

What I like about Gail’s deal is that the on-hold messaging doesn’t really interrupt the flow of business. I am used to being put on hold. I will wait it out to get to the person I need to reach. Not every communication platform you use will work as well as her on-hold messaging.