Reach out to warm leads
What Is Telemarketing?
Telemarketing means directly calling potential or existing customers to promote a product or service. When there’s a separate team for telesales in a business, a telemarketer will only hold this primary responsibility. Otherwise, the telemarketer could also be put in charge of closing sales alongside product promotion. This is the reason why telemarketing and telesales are often used interchangeably, but it could be noted that telemarketing is a blanket term that could cover the telesales function.
Agents for telemarketing are responsible for making potential customers aware of their business’s products or services, generating leads, reconnecting with previous customers, and selling the actual products or services. Its purpose is to nurture leads. It has two categories.
The inbound telemarketing is where agents accommodate incoming calls from previous or recurring customers to answer product inquiries and make recommendations. This is much easier as the customer already expresses interest in the product. Outbound telemarketing requires more skills as it needs to attract and hold the interest of a non-seeking audience. It is the function wherein agents actively look and contact new, potential customers.
The process usually involves an initial phone call to assess potential interest and then a follow-up call for closing in a sale. The agents collect the data to narrow down key demographics, sifting through large pools of names to reach the most highly probable potential customers.
Please note that telemarketers are recruited for voice accounts and are trained for verbally communicating with the customers. Video conferencing calls may also be included in the service, but it does not cover direct mail marketing services.
Telemarketing Best Services
- Automate data entry systems to minimize human error
- Digitize, centralize and integrate customer database systems for telemarketers to refer to.
- Use real-time analytics for proactive solutions
- Have a dedicated telemarketing team equipped with essential tools for customer intelligence needed to satisfy and sell more products strategically.
- Differentiate the direct and inside sales force.
- Train, orient, and develop telemarketers’ sales and people skills needed to connect with the receiver.
- Always use a targeted prospect list. Make use of list brokers or surveys to reach an interested audience. Conduct the necessary research to make sure the customer shows signs of possible interest before making the call.
- Be familiar with the time frames. Timing is everything. Otherwise, make regular calls.
- Utilize a standard sales script.
- Place emphasis in voice training and inflection as well as maintaining an upbeat attitude.
- Ensure agents are thoroughly informed about the products they sell and can answer detailed questions about them.
- Check the legal requirements. Certain countries such as the U.S. and Canada have national “Do Not Call” (DNC) registries managed by the government. However, there are exceptions to the rule, such as charities, surveyors, political campaigns, and for-profit businesses with a consent to call provision due to an existing relationship between the company and the consumer. Other regulations also require specific disclosure of product or service information, prohibits overselling, specifies time curfew, and sets payment restrictions.
The Telemarketing Process
How do telemarketers find potential customers, reach them, and close the sale?
- Lead generation agents survey and collect intelligence about customer profiles and pools
- Outbound telemarketers take these customer prospects and reach out to the new customers through cold calling.
- Appointment setting for follow-up calls.
- Telesales talk promotes the product or services to the prospective buyer.
- Data entry is done when a customer closes a sale and the telemarketers could update the existing customer base.
- Inbound telemarketers maintain the customer relationship and could reach out to existing customers with warm leads.
Benefits of Outsourcing Telemarketing
Telemarketing is the face the business presents to its long-distance customers. For outbound telemarketing or cold calling, this will be the first impression the consumer will have of your company. As such, it contributes to the overall face of the brand to the public. Businesses typically choose to outsource telemarketing for the following reasons:
Reduce overhead costs.
In the case of closing a sale, telemarketing only costs a fifth of the fraction it takes to close a sale in person. Outsourcing this function is much cheaper. The payment package of outsourcing telemarketing already includes the costs of hiring, training, employing, and accommodating a specialized in-house sales team.
Efficiency and transparency.
The telephone is a very cost-efficient, flexible and statistically accountable medium. Powered with computer software, the offshore company could quantitatively monitor and send the telemarketing performance and productivity reports to their clients. When a business outsources a telemarketing team to supplement their telesales team, it adds-on to become the tier 1 of the sales process.
Factor customer insights.
The comparative advantage of telemarketing is that it is the most intimate and personal from all the direct marketing methods. It involves human interaction. Direct communication with customers opens lines for customer feedback and familiarizes with their purchasing cycles. A telemarketing provider’s expertise also enables them to accurately project call volumes and sales per hour.
Create and optimize sales opportunities.
Generate interest. Spread product awareness. Make the sale. Having an expert outbound telemarketing team gives businesses the advantage of having capable agents to cross-selling and up-selling products from cold calls. Outsourcing is a 24/7 operation that enables businesses to have round-the-clock services for accommodating customer product inquiry calls.
Outsourcing a specially trained, ISO-certified team to process sensitive customer data properly and securely will help avoid compliance issues companies face in recent data protection legislation changes. As mentioned above, call receivers who opt in the DNC registry list could file a complaint against the telemarketer which could result in stiff fines or sanctions against the telemarketing firm.
Accommodation and Equipment
The telemarketer’s job can get loud. When a business wants their telemarketing done in-house, it’s best to dedicate a separate soundproof room for the department. Otherwise, it can cause a disruption to the work of other departments. The room aesthetics is instrumental in relaxing the atmosphere of the high-pressure work description of telemarketers. When outsourcing, the infrastructure, equipment, and technology are ready to support a telemarketer’s daily tasks.
Industries That Outsource Telemarketing
When to Outsource Telemarketing
The term telemarketing came in the 1970s when outbound long distance telephone services and inbound toll-free services were made cheaper and available for businesses. All of a sudden, a new way to reach customers and exponentially scale the scope of business marketing efforts was opened. The practice may take place in-house or outsourced from freelancers or call centers. Here are the reasons to outsource telemarketing.
- Escalating field sales costs
- Lack of business visibility
- Customers are from hard-to-reach places
- Interested market is busy/inactive and must be directly contacted to garner interest
- Limited customer base and want of new customer accounts
- No in-house telemarketing experts available
- Preoccupied top management
- Failure to develop necessary marketing program and tests
- Lack of quality control, scripts and call guides
- Overall marketing campaign needs telemarketing support to yield results
- Miscommunication with other direct marketing disciplines
- Legislation changes restricting outbound marketing efforts
- Reprioritizing existing marginal accounts