by Andrew Mault – Country Manager and Director, hammerjack
Originally published on LinkedIn
An expert at outsourced telemarketing shares their tips
1. Know your customer
You’d be surprised how many telemarketers or small business owners pitch their products and services the same way, time after time, regardless of who they are talking to. When you are calling someone out of the blue to introduce your brand, products and/or services, you have a very small window in which to connect. If you can demonstrate your knowledge of their industry and how your products and/or services work specifically in their space, you’ll stand a far better chance of keeping them on the phone and converting to the next stage.
2. Practice makes perfect
Following on from point one, target your direct marketing activities at one industry vertical at a time. By practicing your pitch to the same type of customer repeatedly, your conversation will become more fluid, you’ll connect faster and you’ll learn what triggers that customer to buy your products and services. Before you start making calls, take the time to do your research. Understand how their industry works, use industry terms and talk about the specific problems you can solve for them. Discuss systems, vendors or other products they use. Reference other customers in their industry that have purchased your products or services. Know their busy times and make sure you don’t call at that time. Don’t call a hairdresser on a Friday or Saturday; don’t call a restaurant owner at lunchtime. You get the gist. This approach will lead to longer conversations and more conversions.
3. Soften the blow
No matter how great your product or service is, if you are cold calling potential customers then expect a cold response. That’s ok, it comes with the territory and the more prepared you are, the better your calls will be received. One great way to soften your calls is to run an electronic direct mail (EDM) or direct mail (post) campaign ahead of your calls. That way you can reference the email that you sent or brochure in the mail that they would have received. Other methods that you can use are via LinkedIn or Facebook marketing.
Be aware that there are laws that govern EDMs, so be sure to check this out before you go blasting thousands of prospects. Essentially, you must have a previous relationship with your prospect or have gained the prospects email address through them opting in to allowing marketing activities.
4. Don’t miss an opportunity to connect and sell
Outbound selling is only half the job. When you get off the phone there is a good chance that your contact or prospect will go online to check out your business website. Adding live chat is a great way to connect and build a relationships with potential customers. Consumers and business owners are busy, they can’t always take your call. Having Live Chat means that you can engage your potential customers at a time that suits them. Many consumers do their research after 5pm when most SMBs have closed their doors and turned off their main phone line. That’s why having Live Chat on your website is a game changer for your business. Its also one of the most cost-effective ways to generate new leads.
5. Strike while the iron is hot
Depending on your strategy and the scale of your direct marketing campaign, you should consider how your direct sales team will handle a customer that is ready to buy. They may come across the perfect customer who has been thinking about yours or a similar product and they have the time to talk. Not a problem if it’s you single handedly making all the calls, but if you have a team making calls on your behalf, you won’t want to miss this opportunity. You can address this by implementing a warm transfer process. If you don’t have an effective system in place it’s very easy for the hot lead to give you the cold shoulder further down the track. Effective training is essential to ensure your people know what to do in these scenarios so you can strike while the iron is hot.
I’m Andrew Mault, Director and Country Manager at hammerjack. I have 20 years operational management experience, 13 years in outsourcing, and have spent the last 6 years in the Philippines. I’ve built telemarketing teams for Westpac, American Express, GE Money and Telstra to name a few.