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How to set up A B2B Telemarketing Campaign

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Simple ten point guide to setting up and managing a B2B telemarketing campaign to deliver maximum ROI, brand awareness and market insight.

Simple ten point guide to setting up and managing a B2B telemarketing campaign to deliver maximum ROI, brand awareness and market insight.

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  • 1. Quick Guide to Setting up a Telemarketing Campaign
  • 2. Introduction
    Why should you use telemarketing as part of your marketing mix?
    You almost certainly already use the phone to create business leads and close deals – which is, in essence, “telemarketing”.
    However most of the time calling is carried out on an ad-hoc basis by non-specialist staff with other responsibilities, whose efforts are rarely managed or measured. As a result this kind of telemarketing is often highly inefficient.
    When carried out properly telemarketing can be one of the most cost effective marketing channels available.
    It’s direct, measurable, “two way”, flexible and offers great ROI.
    As well as gaining leads and sales telemarketing can also help raise brand awareness and provide great market insight.
    It’s more than likely that your main competitors already use telemarketing to create new leads and sales….
  • 3. Avoid the most common mistakes…
    At The Telemarketing Company we have over 20 years’ experience of picking up the pieces from badly managed B2B outbound campaigns.
    Whether conducted in house or by a specialist agency there a number of pre-requisites that need to be taken into consideration before you embark on a new campaign.
    This presentation isn’t intended to be an extensive guide for setting up a campaign - instead we are going to illustrate the main areas and potential pitfalls you need to consider at before you instigate a telemarketing campaign.
  • 4. Identify your prospects..
    Having a proper understanding of the types of organisations and the individuals within those organisations that will be responsible for making decisions related to your offer is crucial. If you don’t understand this then telemarketing will probably just be an expensive way of confirming your lack of knowledge.
    Bear in mind that in most organisations the buying process for new products and services is complex and often involves a large number of decision makers, influencers and budget holders.
    A common mistake is to contact the person who understands your offer best, or will be involved in implementation, but isn’t actually going to directly benefit from it. For example if you are selling finance software, contacting the Finance Director will be more useful than speaking to the IT department, just because the IT department understands software.
  • 5. Get the best data
    Data is the foundation of all telemarketing campaigns.
    The mathematics of telemarketing are simple: it’s high cost but high value so you need to make it as effective as possible by using the best data.
    Usually data accounts for only 5% of the total cost of the campaign.
    If you use inaccurate data the first few weeks of your campaign will see staff spending the majority of their time amending records and not making sales.
    It’s not worth cutting costs when buying data as in the long run it will escalate other spending dramatically.
    All data needs to screened against the CTPS and any other relevant suppressions, like your current customers.
  • 6. The approach
    Don’t use a script for B2B telemarketing!
    There are sales and marketing professionals who believe that using a script will ensure that each call is carried out in the best possible manner and will be well structured and consistent – 99% of the time this isn’t the case.
    There needs to be structure and consistency to each call but this will not come from using a script.
    Quality sales come from constructive and fluid conversations – these can not be achieved using a script.
    Using a script can often damage a brand rather than promote it. Most professional business people are short of time; they do not want to hear someone read out a list of marketing messages. They will be even less impressed if the sales person continues to doggedly stick to the script when the conversation needs to take an unanticipated turn.
    If you are using a sales team that require a script then you are using the wrong team!
  • 7. Open questions
    A key part of the call should be about asking questions. Asking intelligent and open questions will benefit you in two ways:
    Firstly it will let you engage with the decision maker and establish yourself as an intelligent and informed individual who is worth talking to.
    Secondly, and more importantly, it should uncover business pain points, leading your prospects to start thinking about how your offer could help them and enabling you to discuss appropriate benefits.
    Asking closed questions like ‘would you like to save 10% on your gas bill’ to try to generate interest (as opposed to qualifying the lead) can be very damaging.
    These kind of “Barnum statements” alienate the prospect. They will feel that you are insulting their intelligence because there is really only one answer to the question.
    It also offers the person at the other end of the line an easy point at which to say ‘no’, which is a very good way of ending the phone call and destroying your lead.
  • 8. Benefits vs. features of your offer
    Business decision makers are people, whatever their role; people tend to buy on benefits, not features.
    Too much selling tends to focus on the features of the offer rather than its benefits. Be clear on the difference in your own mind and brief the callers appropriately.
    If you focus on the benefits of your offer you will get the prospects imagination going; helping them to think about how their situation would be improved if they took on your offer.
    Discussing the benefits will also address the pain points that will hopefully have been identified during the questioning.
    If a prospect is determined to find out about the features of your offering, it’s usually a strong buying signal and an opportunity to set a qualified lead or sales appointment.
  • 9. Criteria
    A lot of sales people will tell you that they “only need a foot in the door” to make a sale. This is rarely true and Telemarketing with this kind of appointment as an objective will often fail.
    If no minimum criteria is applied to the results you ask your telemarketing team to set, your sales team will start to complain about the quality of the opportunities very quickly. They will be wasting their time chasing up people who have no real interest in your offer.
    You should always make sure proper and relevant criteria is applied to the people you will be contacting at the start of the campaign, so that you spend your time contacting individuals who may genuinely have an interest in taking up your offer.
    Using a B.A.N.T framework (checking for Budget, Authority, Need and Timescale) is a sensible way to start.
    Once interest has been generated its fairly simple to establish whether your leads have met this criteria by asking simple open and closed questions like; ‘how many servers do you have?’, ‘how often do you upgrade them?’ etc.
  • 10. The callers
    One of the biggest mistakes made by in house teams is to allocate telemarketing duties to staff that have other responsibilities. More often than not staff with other tasks to complete will rapidly find other things (in fact anything…) to do rather than make sales calls.
    Generating results requires both quality conversations and lots of calling – one without the other will not work.
    To be successful telemarketing needs to be carried out by staff who are exclusively dedicated to the role. Roughly speaking your callers should be picking up the phone around 20 times an hour, 7 hours a day, every single day!
    The profile of the callers is very important to. You need callers who are able to effectively get past “gatekeepers” and then hold fluid and detailed conversations with high ranking business professionals.
    A poor telemarketer will yield poor results – worse still they may upset and alienate your precious prospects.
    If you are not comfortable about your team of callers, don’t start the campaign.
  • 11. Recording the calls
    Recording of all the calls made during your campaign will help you improve quality through staff training as well as offering you a complete audit of what was said during the calls.
    There are a number of recording solutions available if you are carrying out the work in house.
    Any specialist agency should be able to offer you this service and provide call recordings for you to review and critique.
    Recording the calls your team make is really important – don’t start your campaign until you have a proper recording solution in place!
  • 12. Collateral
    Just like all methods of direct marketing telemarketing tends to be much more effective if integrated intelligently with other elements of the marketing mix.
    If you don’t have a website, or any electric or hard copy you will find it very difficult to get results with telemarketing.
    Most contacts will need to be spoken to several times before they will commit to a sale or appointment. Having well produced marketing material to send them can help improve this process dramatically.
    Before you start the campaign make sure you have well put together marketing materials to help your telemarketers produce long term results and to build and nurture a pipeline of opportunities.
  • 13. Close the loop
    Before you start your campaign make sure you have all the necessary resources in place to provide clear and structured feedback to your calling team.
    There are plenty of lead tracking and CRM platforms available; these types of systems will allow you to easily monitor the whole process from first call to the close of the sale – informing you of what needs to be improved and where training needs to be implemented.
    If you are trying to book appointments for you sales team as part of your telemarketing campaign we would strongly recommend getting your sales team to score the meetings they attend.
    These ratings can be used to determine what works and what doesn’t; helping your calling team develop their skills.
  • 14. The Telemarketing Company
    Hopefully this short presentation will have inspired you to think a bit more about telemarketing and how it could improve your business. It’s only a basic guide - visit our website or give us a call to learn more about what The Telemarketing Company could do for your organisation.
    www.ttmc.co.uk
    info@ttmc.co.uk
    The Telemarketing Company26-27 Regency SquareBrightonEast Sussex BN1 2FHTel: 01273 765 000Fax: 01273 765 111