Frequently, the individual enquiring about the services we can offer at The Telemarketing Company (TTMC) is not always the holder of the purse strings. They may be convinced our specialist B2B lead generation or market research will add value, but their next task is to convince the often sceptical boss, who may have no prior experience of using telemarketing as a channel.
Tim Newman, Telemarketing Specialist
To help with these discussions, we’ve put together a Q&A exploring the typical objections raised and how a response might be formulated in each case.
Q: “Can You Guarantee Me Results/ROI”
A: “No one can guarantee results, but TTMC can guarantee (and can prove) quality.”
We would absolutely love to guarantee outcomes to each and every client, but we are not soothsayers or charlatans. Not every campaign can be 100% successful, but what we do know is that when the offering is well presented, the client is fully engaged and we have all the information and support we need, it will, more than likely, be successful.
Because we use a cost per hour rather than a cost per lead model, some financial decision makers may voice their concern. Our standard response goes something like this: it is relatively easy to create leads, the difficulty lies in creating quality leads. If a telemarketing company is paid per lead there is an obvious drive to produce volume. Whereas, we are paid by the hour, so our main drivers are to get quality results, add value and deliver high quality service, in addition to volume lead generation. And, because you can stop the campaign with minimal notice, we need to be able to prove to you just how well it is going on a continual basis.
Above and beyond the metrics, we can also guarantee quality, and we do that through a number of channels:
Firstly, call recordings, we will send over call recordings with every single appointment so that you can gauge the quality of the call, but also the quality of the appointment. We will also send over non-appointment calls for you to evaluate and critique. This way, the process is two-way, transparent and constantly improving.
Secondly, data, we have been round the block more times than we care to mention, so we are well aware of the pitfalls of bad data, and we know how to get the most out of a data set. If you have sourced data for us to use, we can upload it to our bespoke calling platform so that performance is gauged and reported on during the campaign, and calls steered to the pots of data gaining most traction. Alternatively, we can help source good quality data to match your target profile so you have the best starting point for your campaign.
Q: “Why Don’t We Just Do An Email Shot, It’s Cheaper?”
A: “Yes, an email shot would be a lot cheaper, but it will be a lot less effective.”
Email shots are cheap (or free) and that’s why they are so popular and tempting as a marketing device. But, their low cost means that everyone can email their customers, and the public, incredibly regularly.
You only need to look at your own inbox and remember how many you deleted without opening to understand the flaw in email marketing. Of course, it can work, especially if you are contacting existing customers, but the return anyone will get from blind email shots is minimal.
There is also the problem of old email addresses. Unless a database is regularly maintained, the likelihood is that the contact or the email address are no longer current. Or worse, your carefully crafted email joins a slew of other never to be seen messages in the spam folder.
Our telemarketers are trained to collect email addresses every time they get through to a decision maker. Even if the call itself does not lead to a result, you now have an up to date email address for the precise decision maker within that company. So, even an “unsuccessful” call provides some future benefits.
Q: “Won’t It Cost Less To Keep It In House?”
You might have to expand a little on the answer given above, but there are so many hidden costs and issues, it is difficult to summarise them in just one sentence.
Often companies imagine that an in-house telemarketing campaign might be easier / quicker / more cost effective, and on the surface, it is easy to see why. After all, your company knows the products, services and sector better than anyone.
But, there is more to telemarketing than meets the eye. Let’s start take each argument in order:
Size and scale: we are a 200 seat agency with a large resource to draw on. Depending on campaign size we will generally train up three or more callers initially. This means that you can guarantee an uninterrupted campaign with agents calling prospective customers to book appointments for seven hours a day, five days a week.
Knowledge and Training: knowing your product inside and out and knowing how to sell a proposition over the phone are two very different skills. Our staff are trained and coached regularly; this means that they can hit the ground running with any campaign within a few hours of the initial brief. Telemarketing and high quality B2B lead generation is all that they do, so there are no hold ups or hindrances.
Bespoke Technology: thanks to our state of the art telephony system and bespoke calling platform, our telemarketers can make up to 20 calls per hour, every hour, a rate which is nigh on impossible without the appropriate platforms, particularly if your in-house agents are required to perform other tasks other than just calling.
Proactive account management: today’s companies often look to maintain as flat a management structure as possible. In a telemarketing company, it’s better and more productive to maintain a clear division of roles and responsibilities. Every campaign benefits from having a senior account manager who remains the client’s single point of contact supported by a number of team leaders. This allows callers to focus exclusively on what they do best. Every campaign benefits from regular reviews with senior management, call recordings, bespoke reporting and expert data management to ensure your campaign benefits from a process of continuous improvement from start to finish, which is difficult to replicate with in-house resources. And yet importantly, the cost of campaign management is built into the telemarketing, cost so suddenly the hourly rate becomes a lot less expensive.
Flexibility: perhaps one of the greatest benefits of outsourcing is that we can offer a level of flexibility which is unlikely to be matched internally. If the business needs to test an approach or campaign or ramp a project up, or down, or even completely stop for external reasons, within reason we can oblige.
Q: ‘They Don’t Know Anything About Us / Our Product / The Sector”
A: “They don’t need to” (But they know more than you think)
A lot of what we do simply comes down to experience. We might not know the technical specifications of the product you offer, but, quite frankly, we don’t need to.
Whatever your sector or service, we will, at some point over the last 12 years, have come up against something similar. And, in the rare cases that this isn’t true, we are more than capable of picking up as much as we need.
When I say “as much as we need”, I mean, we don’t need to know every detail; we need to know what the product does and how it will benefit the customer. If we know only this, we can make a successful call.
If we are on a call and the decision maker says “tell me more about the manifold rotary girder measurements” we don’t panic and rifle through the brochure, we know what that means. If someone is asking questions, it means they probably have an interest, so we might say something along the lines of “I don’t have all of the technical specifications here, I am in the marketing department, I would be happy to set up an appointment / get someone to call you with the details…”
Knowledge is important, but when you’re telemarketing, it is telemarketing experience that is of the utmost importance.
Q: “But what about our brand and values?”
A: “No problem.”
Every company, including our own, is concerned about how they are represented. We know how vital it is to reflect the values and character of the companies we are working for in a favourable and consistent way. Once again, call recordings are vital in this regard. If we send calls back to you, you can hear how we are doing and email any tweaks to the account manager who’s running your campaign. The account manager will immediately feed this back to the team and, within minutes, the change has been implemented.
We work with some of the world’s leading organisations – they trust us with their most important asset, their brand and we can say with confidence, that trust has never been misplaced and which is why 87% of our revenue comes from repeat business.
As you can well imagine we cannot work in a vacuum and our understanding of your company, brand, product and values comes from a well delivered brief. The briefing and training session always conducted at the start of every campaign is the key to a campaign's success. It serves not only as an occasion for us to learn about your products and services but also for us to truly understand the subtle nuances that capture the very essence of the company. With a great briefing session, an easily contactable and available in-house contact, we can provide a seamless experience between first point of contact and the appointments we set.
Q: “Why Would I Take Money From Elsewhere In The Marketing Budget?”
A: “Phone calls have an average conversion rate of 30-50%, compared to only 1-2% for clicks* human contact is key to business growth.”
With the advent of social media, the marketing channels available to use have sky rocketed. But still, the majority of these lack the human touch. Although a large LinkedIn following can really drive customer engagement, it alone will not persuade a customer looking to invest in sizable propositions to pick up the phone to talk to you.
And, a mass message, whether a Tweet, Facebook update or email shot, cannot be tailored to suit an individual prospect’s perspective, concerns or buying cycle.
Telemarketing presents your product or service directly to the person making the decisions in the form of a conversation. There is no substitute. Conversations happen in real time with questions being answered as they occur. Your proposition can be tailored to meet their needs right there and then.
Our telemarketers are trained to fact find and build interest. By the time you meet the prospect you will have listened to the phone call(s) we made, read the lead notes and have a clear understanding of what kinds of detail might pique their interest.
So, if you are convinced of the benefits telemarketing but don’t know how to convince your boss, we hope that this provides a useful guide. And remember, we have an open door policy, let us help you; there is no better way to persuade than to show you how we work. We encourage all of our prospects to come to our offices to meet with the teams you will be working with, to listen to our calls and meet with our management team. As we have said before, you will be looking to entrust in us, your most important asset: your brand; and one of your key functions: high quality lead generation to drive new business.
We want you and your boss to know you have made the right choice. If he/she still needs more convincing, please let us help.
* Invoca - http://blog.invoca.com/20-incredible-stats-marketers-need-to-know-about-phone-calls/