Long Live the New, Evolved, Telemarketing – 8 Tips to Make End-User Telemarketing a Success

For many people, telemarketing conjures up images of dinners interrupted by a ringing phone and an unwanted conversation. But, done right, the new and evolved telemarketing can be an incredibly effective way to unlock new business and new customer relationships – and provide benefits for those on both sides of the call.

If you have any doubts about it then let the facts and statistics speak for themselves. According to industry reports[1] 70 percent of B2B sales are driven by human interaction and 56 percent of them are started through telemarketing. Moreover, about 60 percent of the Fortune 500 companies believe that telemarketing is very effective for generating leads and increasing customer outreach.

Our clients are using telemarketing to drive new sales opportunities, sign up new prospects or introduce them to partner programs, drum up interest for events and create brand awareness. This indicates the fact that telemarketing is here to stay in today’s digital age.

So how can you join them? Here’s my top 8 tips for telemarketing best practice that we have gathered from our most recent campaigns:

1.    Know what result you’re trying to drive

Doing telemarketing with a purpose is critical. Often we find that clients don’t always have a clear idea of what result they’re trying to drive with their campaign and what their call to action and next step is. Is it to have a workshop with the customer? To get them to come to an event? Or even simply to have an introductory coffee with the right contact in a business. Or, on the flip side, are you looking for a BANT (budget, authority, needs and timeline) qualified opportunity?

The result you’re looking for will drive the campaign you roll out. Driving attendance to an event is less costly than getting BANT-qualified leads.

Don’t over invest paying for a campaign you don’t need, or underinvest and fail to achieve the results you need.

2.    Qualify your leads

Here at Hachiko, we work with many IT vendors and their Partners, some of whom provide us with propensity data to work with.

Using a robust process we can qualify credible prospects to speak with, ensuring time isn’t wasted talking to all 500 companies on a list. It not only saves time but, equally importantly, ensures you don’t have disgruntled customers feeling as though they’re just another name in a long list being called – something that can be detrimental to your reputation.

3.    Quality callers mean a quality return on your investment

People still prefer to hear a human voice. This makes them easy to trust the person they are dealing with. It’s important that the person making the call has the right understanding for the call they’re talking about. That doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be highly technical, but it does mean they have to understand fully what they’re talking about, what they’re trying to achieve and be able to engage in a natural discussion. There’s nothing worse than those stilted, ‘read from a script’ calls.

Having a knowledgeable tele-agent speaking with a correctly profiled decision maker can make all the difference when it comes to getting value from your telemarketing investment, we currently see around 10% of our Decision Maker conversations turn into BANT qualified leads.

4.    Know who you’re handing the lead to

Getting a lead is just one part of the equation. Making sure you hand the lead on to the right person is equally critical.

You might think it will automatically be one of the technical pre-sales team, but in fact, it might be that a sales person will be better at hand-holding the opportunity and orchestrating it by bringing the relevant resources in, as required.

Pass a lead on to someone who is not comfortable having a phone or face to face conversation, and would rather hide behind their email, and you could lose an opportunity.

5.    … and make sure the handover is thorough

By interacting with leads directly, you can understand their pain points, challenges and needs. This data can be used to your business advantage as you can provide customised solutions to your customers, thus giving you an edge over your competition and ultimately gaining more customers. When we hand over a lead to a partner or vendor, they get a thorough lead alert, showing company overview including the vertical they work in, how big they are, key contacts and the size of the potential opportunity, – everything the partner or vendor needs to start a conversation. We also outline the next steps to be taken.

And don’t forget, when you’re having these conversations with potential customers, they can often throw up unexpected opportunities. You might be talking to them about a migration to Azure, but instead uncover opportunities around a Microsoft 365 or Office 365 opportunity, a device refresh or professional services.

6.    Track your progress

Once those leads are handed over, don’t forget them. There has to be an element of ownership so check in with whoever is assigned to follow them up promptly before they get cold.

7.    Take a blended approach with air cover around digital marketing

Telemarketing is just one part of the approach we take. You should always consider a blended approach by adding digital experiences to your campaign in an effort to foster long-term loyalty and build better relationships. An example is thought leadership articles to showcase your expertise, or a case study showing that you can – and have – delivered on what you say you can.

After profiling your prospects with telemarketing you are also able to create more personalised connections. So creating personalised content (from email to on-site content) that follows that prospect through their buyers journey is crucial in building retention and brand loyalty.

8.    Share the load (shared cost model)

In some instances, both vendors and partners will contribute to the costs of a campaign. It’s the ideal situation with both parties having skin in the game.

And one final note: Compliance. It’s a biggie in this day and age. With the introduction of GDPR data protection legislation and other similar legislations around the world, it’s important than ever to know the rules and stick to them.

Summary

Hachiko is a loyalty-led marketing agency that delivers deeper engagement, trust and results through creating personalised connections that build brand love and lasting loyalty.

We believe data is the key to brand success and therefore should be considered a strategic asset for any business. By collecting, connecting and acting on it you are able to determine how different customers should be treated based on their individual needs.

Partner with Hachiko as a natural extension of your team to help your business connect directly with your current and future customers.

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