In the past and even to this day, telemarketing has received a lot of bad press and is often disregarded for use in a lot of business’ marketing strategies. Despite what you may believe, when used in a business-to-business environment, telemarketing can be one of the most valuable and effective tools for market penetration and business development as a whole.
In this article, we have explored five common misconceptions about telemarketing and why they are more fiction rather than fact.
#1 - Telemarketing is all about pushing the sale.
One myth that unfortunately, quite a few people believe is that businesses use telemarketing as a means to pressure their customers into making a quick buying decision, even if the customer is not ready to buy.
Telemarketing has and still gets quite a lot of bad press due to the handful of companies that use tactics such as the one stated above. These companies are typically B2C focused, yet most B2B telemarketing companies are often tarred with the same brush. This is one reason that some people are put off by telemarketing and believe that the businesses that use it, employ pushy, intrusive sales tactics.
Despite some of the poorly structured, sales-focused tactics used by some companies, the majority of professional telemarketing companies employ a customer-focused approach to telemarketing.
The telemarketing strategy that we employ at Inspired focuses on building rapport and developing a relationship with our existing clients and our prospects. Almost all sales decisions are emotionally or socially driven, which is why we use guides rather than scripts. Robotic sales scripts often take away all of the emotion from the calls and limit the freedom of the telemarketer.
#2 - Telemarketers Always Read From a Script.
Carrying on from Myth #1, for some, the idea of a telemarketer is a script following robot whose only goal is to close sales. Despite this common stereotype, nowadays professional telemarketing companies rarely use scripts during their telemarketing activities as they restrict the flow of the conversation and can destroy the rapport between the telemarketer and their prospects.
As previously mentioned, rather than using scripts, we utilise campaign guides and plans that allow our telemarketers to acquire and deliver all of the required information, through meaningful interactions that are friendly, professional and unique.
These guides often contain information such as openers and closers, potential objections and the appropriate counterpoints, as well as the key information to deliver and collect from the prospect. Additionally, giving the telemarketers the freedom to alter aspects of their pitch such as the wording of the openers and closers, or the structuring of some questions can drastically improve the flow and performance of the telemarketer.
In short, scripts are a thing of the past. Nowadays, telemarketing companies opt for a less restricting and more personable approach to structuring campaigns rather than using a robotic and emotionless sales script.
#3 - Telemarketing is Obsolete.
Some people believe that telemarketing is now obsolete due to the rise of digital marketing and other advancements in the marketing world. However, in a lot of cases, the old ways are still the best.
Take customer acquisition, for example; attempting to engage with and acquire new customers through digital marketing can often be a long-winded and difficult process. With telemarketing, however, you are able to get in direct contact with your prospects almost instantaneously, skipping the entire process of attracting them to your content and waiting weeks for them to engage with you.
With most digital marketing strategies, companies will post social media updates, blog posts, infographics, video content etc. and wait for their audience to make the next move. This is known as ‘reactive’ marketing.
Telemarketing is more proactive. There’s no waiting around for inbound engagements or responses that may never come, instead, you actively seek out new business opportunities and speed up the customer acquisition process. This is why, even with the rise of digital marketing, 92% of all B2B customer interactions take place over the phone.
Despite the differences between marketing strategies such as telemarketing and digital marketing, they are more effective when integrated with one another. We often integrate our email marketing services with our lead generation and appointment setting activities to support our calls. By sending out emails to prospects before making telephone contact, it helps to ‘warm’ the data and can make the first contact over the phone a lot smoother and simpler.
In a nutshell, telemarketing isn’t going anywhere. Rather than choosing between telemarketing and other strategies such as digital marketing, using them to support one another is a far more effective and sustainable approach to customer acquisition.
#4 - Telemarketing is all About Using Aggressive, Manipulative Tactics.
Although there are some companies that believe a more aggressive ‘hard selling’ strategy is the most effective approach to telemarketing, most reputable companies believe in a more value-focused, customer-oriented strategy.
With telemarketing, success heavily relies on your prospect’s experience with you and the perception of your company. Using aggressive selling tactics and being dishonest or manipulative with your telemarketing is not only going to annoy your prospects and affect your results but can also damage your professional reputation.
The key to creating an effective telemarketing strategy is through positive, valuable interactions with your prospects. This involves using positive language and ensuring that you are actively listening and responding to your prospect’s queries and concerns in a helpful and friendly way.
In the past, ‘hard selling’ was the go-to strategy for telemarketing and telesales, but now it is one of the least welcomed strategies. After all, it’s hard to sell something or set up an appointment with someone you have just irritated or angered.
#5 - Anyone can do Telemarketing.
It’s true, anyone can pick up a phone and contact their prospects. The real question is; will they get the desired results?
Telemarketing is a highly complex strategy and it takes a lot of training and experience to be classed as an ‘expert’. Receiving this training and getting this experience, will take a considerable amount of time and during that time, you will likely have a hard time getting the results that you are hoping for.
Luckily, an option that a lot of businesses choose, is outsourcing. When outsourcing your telemarketing, you no longer have to worry about getting the right training, or gaining the telemarketing experience that you would need to carry out your own campaigns. All you need to do is focus on closing the qualified business opportunities that are generated by your chosen telemarketing experts. Essentially, you receive qualified business opportunities, without having to do all of the legwork.
When deciding on the right telemarketing company to use, remember the saying, “You get what you pay for.”. Going with the cheapest option can often result in disappointing ROI or in some cases the loss of your investment.