Telemarketing – Could it make or break your business?

constantly learn and adapt via telemarketing 2
Is that introductory telephone call to your business just an annoyance – or could it change your life?  Every day, $Billions exchange hands by telephone deals, yet the image of the “unsolicited” telephone call is still somewhat tarnished.  I will explain why telemarketing is a necessity for business growth for everyone, when performed correctly…

I was working on the database for a “high-ticket-value-sale” for a client this week.  I carefully selected what looked like a short-list of new possible companies – companies for my client to work with that I could call this week.  One of these, a large motorcycle goods retailer looked like a good target.  Yet when I made the first call, an automated message said “blah, blah, blah… We do not take unsolicited telephone calls!”  After a spot of further research, I was bowled-over to read in the press that, “XYZ Co. enters receivership!”  Could there be a connection between blocking anyone from offering services to a company by telephone and the demise of this big company?

Telemarketing – offering new ideas is essential to business survival and growth

Without a shadow of a doubt, if a company ceases to change and adapt – it will die!  Every company must constantly learn and adapt to the changing marketplace.  Yet should a company always rely upon internal directors and managers having the time to research new suppliers?  In these tough economic times, even the best senior personnel are hard pushed to meet current deadlines, let alone spend hours trying to find suppliers that could radically improve business performance.

Telemarketing – improving business performance

I always like to work with clients who have a product or service that could make a big impact on business performance.  Generally speaking, my clients are able to greatly improve sales or significantly produce savings for an organisation.  For me, for my clients and for their customers – it’s all about Return on Investment, Internal Rate of Return and a healthy cash-flow.  Yet do you believe that your average receptionist even understands the meaning of ROI?

Here are my top favourite dumb remarks from staff at organisations that appear to have shrunk, have suffered plummeting market-share or have gone bust:

·         Senior Manager – “No, I’m not interested in making more sales – I’m too busy to talk

·         Receptionist – “That department are too busy, they’ve asked us not to put any calls through to them anymore

·         Assistant – (before even asking what the call was about) “The Director knows about that and he’s not interested, goodbye!

Do I blame the senior manager for ruining their business – absolutely!  Someone at that level should know better and in my opinion they are no better than a saboteur.  Do I blame junior staff – no!  If managers and directors instil a business philosophy of “grand isolation” around their organisation, then they isolate themselves from the world and they pay for the consequences.

When I was a young man, I knew everything about everything – because I had little responsibility and all the time in the world.  At 40 something my days are now filled with responsibilities and tasks and it’s often my young nephew who introduces me to things like new “Apps”.  Likewise in business, most good managers and directors are too busy running their business.  Those who are enlightened are willing to listen to a good pitch for something that could change their business for the better.

Telemarketing – your name’s not on the list, you can’t come in!

I think the difficulty here is the “dumb-down of gatekeeper tactics”.  Gatekeepers of all forms (especially receptionists) are often given very simplistic instructions.  Firstly, they are told (quite rightly) to ask for the name of the person, the company they work for and why they are calling.  That’s fine – but why would you trust someone on a minimum wage who may be a ‘Temp’ to screen and filter your calls any further?

So what sort of questions are Gatekeepers told to ask, that are the wrong questions:

·         What is the nature of the call?”  If the Gatekeeper doesn’t understand how the business runs – how will they evaluate the answer?

·         Have you spoken to that person before?”  This “isolationist” question prevents any new fresh ideas being communicated to the business.

… and what are the worst actions of Gatekeepers:

·         Whatever you say – “He/she prefers an email and they will contact you

·         Whatever you say – “We would prefer it if you put something in writing first

Imagine if Gatekeepers were instructed to use a more intelligent approach:

·         Instead of asking about the nature of the call, what about asking “How will your call benefit our business?“  Answers using phrases like “make more money”, “save money”, etc could be exactly what that company needs.

In every job there are people who are good and bad at what they do.  We all like to feel important.  To be fair, there are far too many telemarketing people who want to feel important.  Likewise their are far too many receptionists who want to play God.  So many of the problems here revolve around “ego”.  Fortunately, I park my ego at the front door before making calls for my clients – which is perhaps why I’ve been told that I am the best telemarketing lead generator full stop.

Every day, I help my clients and their customers by bringing them together.  Each time, this provides my clients and their customers with the opportunity to work together to improve profitability.  The bottom line in business – is all about making money.

If you have a product or service that improves performance – and you need the best telemarketing lead generation – call Stephen Law on 0203 790 9307 or email me – stephen@sl-freelance.co.uk .

Stephen Law is a Business Development expert. Over a 25 year period, Stephen worked has worked from a Foot Canvasser and Telemarketing Junior in the 1980s to an Executive Director and Company Secretary in the 1990s. Stephen's sales and marketing career spanned the IT, Communications and Technology sectors, where he was always top in his field. Stephen has also been head of Manufacturing, HR, and R&D for a number of organisations. In 2005, Stephen decided to form his own company offering Business Development via Consultative Telemarketing. Few people enjoy telemarketing as much as Stephen and fewer still understand how to communicate effectively with senior decision makers. Stephen is an Associate Partner of the No1 UK Business Development Agency and an Honorary Director at the LCDA for Business Development, where he has taught the Art of Selling at London South Bank University.

Posted in Business Development, Lead Generation, Telemarketing
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