When we created the Call 10 Tiger Program for Networkers, Bill Gove and I made a conscious decision not to bury our heads in the sand when it came to dealing with voice mail in cold market prospecting. In fact, the Tigers average 50 percent live contacts and 50 percent voice mail messages during their weekly prospecting calls. More importantly, seven out of ten prospects return the Tigers' calls within 24 hours.

How is this possible in the cold market?

With what we like to call "voice mail magic."

There are two critical elements to developing a voice mail message that prospects can't resist. The first element is the words you use. The worst mistake you can make is to "wing it" when you leave a message for someone in the cold market. Always remember that the cold market doesn't know you, doesn't care about you, and if you don't get their attention in the first ten seconds, it's over. They will erase your message and go on to the next 27 messages they have waiting for them.

Here are the exact words the Tigers use to get a 70 percent call back return:

"Hi, John. This is Ron Thompson calling. I have a business matter I need to discuss with you as soon as possible. You can contact me at 561-733-9078. That's 561-733-9078. I take my return calls between 4-5pm Eastern Time."

Don't waste your time playing with the words. Over 700 Tigers are using this exact script each week with tremendous success. This script is also getting the same results in the U.K., Australia, and Canada. It works because it's clear, concise, powerful, and vague at the same time.

But the words account for only a fraction of the result. The real power is in the delivery. Before you leave the message, create this scenario in your mind: I'm seriously considering suing this person, and I'm going to give him/her one more chance to apologize and make things right.

This scenario puts an edge in your voice that immediately grabs the prospect's attention. The prospect doesn't know exactly what you want but feels compelled to call you back.

At 4:00 in the afternoon, you sit by your phone and prepare for the onslaught of callbacks. Then you simply read the script, you've prepared.

Some people feel we are resorting to gimmicks with this system, so I'd like to close the article by addressing this concern.

Understand that the cold market is wild and untamed. In the Tiger program, we call it "The Jungle." In order to become a Tiger and conquer the cold market, you must understand how the cold prospect thinks. In this case, he or she assumes you are either a telemarketer or a salesperson, and if that is the prospect's final conclusion after listening to your voice mail, you will simply not get the call back. The truth is, you are not a telemarketer nor a salesperson. You are a million-dollar business leader looking for million-dollar partners. I don't care if your last check was two dollars and fifty cents, you should have a million-dollar mentality and look to sponsor others who have this same rare quality. When you leave this message, you must sound like the strong, powerful, successful leader that lives inside of you. If you do, you will get a high percentage of callbacks in the cold market. If you don't, the cold market will hand you your head. It's that simple.

Decide today that you will work smarter and get tougher when it comes to voice mail. Remember: In the jungle, the Tiger starves last.