In B-to-B marketing, direct phone initiatives possess the potential to
produce greater opportunities than any other marketing activity. Live
conversations create the rare opportunity to personally engage your prospect,
cultivate customer relationships and secure new business opportunities.
Today, B-to-B telemarketing is being embraced for a wide range of sales
and marketing activities: lead generation, prospective lead nurturing, event support, and compiling and cleaning lists and databases.
Regardless of the activity, there is one valuable benefit that
telemarketing always offers: real-time
information. During the call, you can learn firsthand what your customers are experiencing in
the marketplace. This is only possible, though, if your phone team is capable
of customer interaction rather than script recitals, which is one of many
factors that affect the success of a call campaign.
A key decision that
you need to make is whether this will be an internal effort, executed by your
own in-house staff, or if you’ll need to outsource the work to a specialized
An internal team
offers many advantages, such as potentially deeper content knowledge and more
seamless integration into your unique business processes. That approach might
also give you more control of and visibility into the calling effort, as well
as the advantage of working with your own staff.
the other hand, outsourcing allows you to more easily control costs by eliminating
salary and operational expenses. You also typically leverage greater
phone-specific experience and expertise that’s often not available in-house.
If you decide to
outsource your call campaign, here are six questions to ask:
1. What is the staff like? Good teams comprise
professionals from multiple disciplines and tend to work a limited number of
hours per day.
2. What is the call environment
like? Avoid boiler room call centers. Your business deserves to be represented
by people working in a comfortable, professional environment. Don’t be scared
off by teleworker environments.
3. What is the call guide,
brief or script process and format? Training is key. Callers must understand the mission and messaging
so that they can execute the program without a script. Scripts are crutches and
hinder conversation. A good call team uses a call guide and formulates the best
dialogue when they call.
4. How do they set up and initiate a new
project? Successful programs begin
with an infusion of knowledge from both the client sales and marketing teams.
Cookie-cutter approaches rarely capture the intent and nuance that need to be transferred
between organizations to achieve success.
5. Can they integrate with your
CRM/marketing automation system? We live in a real-time
world. Actions need to happen fast and smoothly. Sharing data back and forth is
essential to optimizing opportunities.
6. What level of reporting and analysis can they offer? Raw numbers are good, but what do they mean and what can you do to
make the program work even better? Understand what the vendor brings to the
table in terms of crunching numbers and producing actionable information.
the right telemarketing program can be a valuable asset to your B-to-B business.
Developing that effort, though, requires careful attention and the right
approach, and application of the program requires rigor. When that happens, you
have a powerful revenue booster and brand builder.
This was originally published in the November 2014 issue of the B2B Marketing e-newsletter.