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I recently took my first ever formal training course for sales, the HubSpot Prospecting Bootcamp. Out of the entire 8 week course the biggest takeaway and most impactful piece of information was “the pause, pause, pause”.

One of the biggest issues that people including myself face in sales is making first calls to new or potential clients. Cold calling can prove a difficult method in engaging people in a conversation.

The “pause, pause, pause” method allows a quick way to qualify leads over the phone.

Basically it goes like this, you introduce yourself with a wait time. The key is saying “pause, pause, pause” in your head to allow time to gauge their reaction.

Hi _____, This is Louis with Media Garcia (insert a “pause, pause, pause while listening for the reaction)”

The “pause, pause, pause” method will generally get you two reactions: excited for the connect (“Oh, hey Louis!”) or disinterested in hearing from you (“Who….?”).

The good news is either way you win! Here’s what to do for each reaction.


When you hear in the call recipient's voice they remember you, it gives the go ahead for your planned routine call.

This can also signal you built a quality connect with them if you are following up. Or in the case of a cold call, that they are open to hear what you have to say if you have never spoken before. You don’t have to feel like a junk mail operator over the phone.

If the call recipient seems hesitant to your calling them, there are usually two realms. Either way, you can develop a connect on the spot.

1. They sound upset and express disinterest in hearing from you.

In this case I generally will take a quick out and state that I was intending to call about quickly. If they don’t warm up I let them off the hook politely and ask if they would like contact info if they change their mind and want to call back later.

2. They sound open to hearing who you are and maybe what you want.

This is my favorite outcome because it gives me the chance to tell them what I remember or know about them and set the tone for what I want them to remember about me.

Here are some examples of engaging people in a conversation and developing a connect!

  • Well John we met at the breakfast event at the Chamber of Commerce last week, we were talking about why it’s so expensive to add air conditioning to small aircraft”
  • “As it turns out Sara, our mutual friend, Randy, suggested that I call and check in with you this week. He thought we might have something useful for your business”
  • “I attended the international widget consortium last week and you were one of the presenters. I stopped by and thanked you after but there were a lot of people waiting to talk to you so I figured I’d try to call you to get some more info on that rubber duck launcher you were saying such great things about”

No matter the outcome, you can rely on the pause to give you a moment to assess how the call is going right out of the gate, and take a moment to relax and get it right.

Have you use the "pause, pause, pause" before? What tools do you use? 

Louis Garcia
Post by Louis Garcia
June 8, 2017
I am an urban adventurer who loves to discover new places, meet larger than life personalities, and solve complex problems. I founded and started my business, Media Garcia, as a side hustle the early 2010s and it went from a small underdog website development business to a bold and beautiful growth agency. I free time-strapped entrepreneurs by discovering the friction and pain points in their business processes and optimize and automate where needed. Grow better with less effort.