Telemarketing: Myths vs Reality

Sometimes, businesses in need of lead generation help shy away from telemarketing because of misconceptions. Ensure you don’t make the same mistake by reading our myth-busting guide to modern B2B telemarketing.

The whole reason Smartlead Marketing exists in the first place is to provide a fresh, sophisticated approach to telemarketing. B2B telemarketing is a whole different animal from crowded call centres full of inexperienced temps. The truth is, if your business wants to enter new markets, build strategic relationships and harness growth opportunities then you can’t afford to ignore telemarketing as an opportunity.

So, with that said, we think it’s time to dispel the top three telemarketing myths for good.

THE MYTH: Telemarketing is a numbers game.

THE REALITY: It’s a research game.

Photo by Dan Dimmock on Unsplash
Photo by Dan Dimmock on Unsplash

Great telemarketing isn’t about indiscriminately hammering out call after call. Nor is it about maximising the volume of leads that are generated. This is because when it comes to converting leads, quantity alone isn’t enough. Quality is the real determining factor when it comes to lead generation success.

Before you pick up the phone with a potential lead, you need your rationale and reasoning as to why they would want to talk to you. And you need to be able to demonstrate this in a way that enables the prospect to see this clearly, too. You want the person at the end of the phone to feel reassured. And that they are speaking with a professional who can help them, not someone who’s trying to hit their target. The only way to achieve this is by knowing who you’re contacting, why, and what their goals and pain points are.

THE MYTH: It’s a salesperson’s job to do cold calling.

THE REALITY: Your salespeople are far better at converting business.

Telemarketers headset

The value of a seasoned salesperson is in building relationships and closing business. To close business, your salespeople need to spend time talking to decision-makers who have a qualified, defined need for your product or service. In short, your salespeople should be there to make the very most out of a viable opportunity.

When your sales team are spending the majority of their time generating prospects, they don’t get to flex their sales skills at all. Because lead generation is NOT about selling. It’s about identifying needs and generating interest and engagement.

THE MYTH: Telemarketers are pushy.

THE REALITY: B2B telemarketing specialists are absolute professionals.

The reasoning behind this myth is that we’ve all experienced a pushy cold caller bothering us when we least expect it. But the difference between a low-skill, high-volume call centre churning out cold calls and a professional B2B telemarketing specialist is like night and day.

B2B telemarketing experts are, for one, contacting relevant contacts about issues that are relevant to their jobs. People at work should expect to have conversations about work. Particularly when the telemarketer is knowledgeable, well-researched and an empathetic listener.

Find out for yourself what to expect from a fresh approach to telemarketing

Happy business owner having a great telemarketing call.
Photo by bruce mars on Unsplash

Whatever your product or service, telesales is merely the beginning of your sales process. The purpose of the telesales function is a fact-finding mission. It’s about speaking to people about their business, their goals, their challenges and what they need to help them achieve them. Then it’s about intelligently aligning your brand with those needs, and setting up the building blocks of the sales process. With a reputable telemarketing firm, there’s no hard sell. Nor is there the risk of reputational damage. Best of all, there’s less frustration for your salespeople – who can take a qualified lead and work their magic with it.

We’d love to help you crush more telemarketing myths by getting you to find out for yourself how we can transform your sales process. Call us to find out more.

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So you’ve got an effective lead generation strategy. And a healthy influx of leads cascading into your sales funnel. Nice work. Now what?

It’s time to nurture those fledgling prospects. Tenderly develop their relationship with your business until the point where they are ready to convert from prospect to client. Gently guide your leads on a journey that keeps them steadily progressing through this sales funnel of yours. 

But how?

What is lead nurturing?

Photo by dlxmedia.hu on Unsplash

In short, it’s relationship-building. Lead nurturing is maturing and fortifying a lead to a sales-ready state, ripe for conversion. MarketingSherpa research shows that 73% of B2B leads are not sales-ready. But sales teams still keep receiving thousands of unqualified leads that they have to try and convert, which can be like trying to push treacle uphill. It’s demoralising trying to engage with unprepared prospects. Especially when the salespeople are equally unprepared, without any real insight or objective reasoning behind trying to talk to the lead, other than trying to flog something.

Why is lead nurturing so important?

Businesses that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost.

Forrester Research

It’s so important because, unlike an actual physical funnel, your metaphorical funnel has to rely on more than gravity drawing its contents through it. With your metaphorical funnel, YOU have to be the force that draws the prospects through. Otherwise, they may simply dematerialise, fall out the non-existent side, or travel upwards and out the top. Whatever. There are no rules of physics that apply in a metaphorical funnel scenario. It’s an imaginary construct.

So how do you nurture leads through this sales funnel, with the best possible chance of them emerging from the bottom as revenue? 

You need a lead nurturing strategy, not just tactics and tricks. Many online guides will tell you it’s all about email. And we aren’t saying it’s not all about email. A drip email marketing campaign, done right, is definitely a lead nurturing strategy you should be using. But a multi-channel, integrated lead nurturing approach is really where it’s at. You need to be everywhere.

Lead nurturing best practice

Taking note of these lead nurturing principles will yield substantial results for your sales pipeline:

Time is of the essence in lead nurturing

Don’t lose out on opportunities because you are too slow to respond to prospects. Reach out within the hour wherever possible. Be hyper-responsive.

Get personal

Gone are the days when stock responses are enough to engage a prospect. As buyers, we all expect and appreciate a personalised experience. And with access to more data and automation than ever, there’s no excuse for not delivering it.

Value comes before the sale

Trust is the most important element of customer relationship management – right from the outset. There’s no better way to build trust, authority and engagement than offering value to your prospects long before they pay you a penny. In this regard, content is king. Relevant, interesting, useful content that helps your prospects soothe their pain points is a critical aspect of lead nurturing. Whether it’s problem-solving solutions in targeted email campaigns, directing prospects to your blog or providing free webinars or white papers – how can you be of use and value to your prospects today? Create opportunities for them to buy into you, which could just lead them to buy from you.

Commit to the long haul

50% of your prospects are ready to buy now. 50% aren’t. Lead nurturing is an ongoing process, and it takes planning, commitment and consistency. Connect with your leads through multiple channels.

Don’t let your hard-won leads go cold. And if you aren’t sure how best to nurture them to maturity, we’d love to help. Read more about our appointment setting service.

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