Today they have a whole new set of problems to deal with, problems they have never encountered before. They, and we, are in uncharted waters.
With this in mind, our opening lines should be something like this:
" Hello, I'm ____ with ____. I know we are living through extraordinary times. We are working with businesses in our area to help them to minimize the affects of this pandemic on their businesses. Most of our clients have had to change how they serve their customers, everything from closed dining rooms, social distancing, curbside pickup, delivery, shorter hours. Some of our clients have had to completely close temporarily. How have the government mandates changed your business? (listen to what they say.)
We are never certain that we can be of help to a business until we discuss your needs further. We are being effective in helping other local business people. Might it be of benefit to discuss how we might be able to help you? Could we set a time when I could phone you back?"
"Advertising" may be a bad word right now. "Messages to your customers" is not. Businesses must communicate with their customers. And what they must communicate is changing daily, sometimes hourly. Radio is able to change messaging as often as needed.
For your current clients, try to create new messaging for them before you call. If you have worked with a business for awhile, you probably have a pretty good idea of what they might need to communicate to customers now. Our clients are too busy to think about it. We should do the thinking for them, become their guides. We are the marketing experts.
All surveys are showing that radio listening is up. People may not be commuting to work, but they are listening to the radio. We provide information. We provide entertainment. We provide connection. We provide companionship.
The first step in helping businesses is to get them to talk with us. Use the above as a prototype to craft your own message in your own words. Remember to present what we do from the standpoint of our customers: We help them to solve problems, to deal with this pandemic. Today, they need us more than ever.
This will pass. We will survive.