Telemarketing Services

Telemarketing has emerged as a popular and effective marketing tool. More and more companies are adopting this method owing to the quicker responses received. Companies often outsource their telemarketing services to third party telemarketing firms. The outsourcing enables the companies to concentrate on their core activities, while the telemarketing firms handle the telemarketing services. One of the advantages of utilizing the services of professional telemarketing firms is their expertise in handling a wide range of customers. Outsourcing telemarketing services generally proves to be a wise business decision.

Telemarketing can be broadly classified into inbound telemarketing and outbound telemarketing. A standard firm offering telemarketing services deals with both these kinds of marketing. Telemarketing firms also offer other services such as business-to-business telemarketing, business-to-consumer telemarketing, and automated telemarketing. Some specialized telemarketing services include voice broadcasting, sales lead generation, answering service, appointment fixing, order processing, and sales report generation. These services are provided at a cost effective and reliable manner. Telemarketing can be outsourced for better results and professional services. The outsourcing of telemarketing services has now emerged as a key component in a company’s sales initiatives.

Third-party telemarketing firms usually have tie-ups with numerous companies for selling their diverse range of products and services. The expertise gained in dealing with a diverse customer base can be utilized effectively for telemarketing at different regions with different ethnic populations. Some customers complain that marketing calls are a pestering problem. They enlist themselves into some state or federal do-not-call lists. It is a serious offence to call these customers for any commercial or marketing purposes. The telemarketing firms therefore maintain do-not-call lists in their databases.

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Inbound Vs Outbound Telemarketing Services

Technology has changed the way companies do business. Companies can now easily reach consumers by launching targeted online pay per click campaigns and market via social media. While this hands off approach has helped business become more efficient, outbound telemarketing continues to be a great way to reach prospects and get them to take action. Business process outsourcing services have been a direct beneficiary of technology. BPO call centers have grown across the globe as a means to provide affordable services to companies in locations where labor is expensive. Savvy business owners can harness this new technology and continue the tried and true practice of generating sales through outbound telemarketing. Call centers around the world now provide companies with a way to implement B2C, B2B telemarketing, and appointment setting services at a low cost. To launch an effective outsourcing campaign, you must first decide your approach. Decide whether you want to utilize inbound telemarketing, outbound telemarketing, or a virtual assistant who can fill multiple roles.

Inbound Telemarketing

Most people think of inbound telemarketing as the same thing as customer support. Inbound telemarketing is slightly different than customer service in that it involves the telemarketer in the sales process. Customer service typically requires a representative to answer questions on behalf of an existing customer. In recent years, lenders have done a particularly good job outsourcing mortgage telemarketing services. Typically, the lender will generate leads online, and the telemarketer will handle inbound inquiries. The telemarketing representative will answer basic mortgage related questions, and set up an appointment with the prospect and the loan officer.

Outbound Telemarketing

Outbound telemarketing involves the telemarketer cold calling prospects who are not expecting a call. The first step to launching an outbound telemarketing campaign is to define your market. Once you have determined exactly who you are trying to reach, put together a telemarketing list for your telemarketer to call. If you don’t have a database of target prospects, you can buy a list from a third party. There are many companies who can provide a list of contacts based upon parameters you define. The next step would be to write a script. Customize a short script that will help your telemarketer effectively promote your products or services to your target market. Determine whether your campaign will be B2B or B2C. Business to business campaigns typically involve the telemarketer getting past a secretary, or gatekeeper. If your project is B2B, your script will have to incorporate a “getting past the gatekeeper” element. Send the script to your telemarketer and have him practice overcoming potential objections. Set up a phone call to role play the script with your telemarketer. This will give you your first idea of how the telemarketer will sound on the phone. If there are any stumbling points, refine your script to make it sound better. Once you have completed the script, have your telemarketer call prospects for a day or two, and see how it goes. Check back in with your telemarketer, and get some feedback. Find out what kind of objections they are hearing and continue to refine the script accordingly.

Telemarketers or Virtual Assistants?

Some entrepreneurs have hired virtual assistants through call centers overseas. This can be advantageous to companies that need a variety of services to performed in addition to telemarketing. Outsourced virtual assistants can handle appointment setting, data entry, inbound telemarketing (customer service), and outbound telemarketing. Determine what role you want your virtual assistant to play for your organization prior to launching your project. Your call center service provider may have different requirements for telemarketer than they do virtual assistants, so it is important to define their role in advance. Typically, a telemarketer will have superb voice skills, but may be lacking in written communication. Tell your service provider if your project will require a lot of data entry and email marketing so they hire the right employee for your company.

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Telemarketing and Your Business

Telemarketing can really boost your profits and increase sales for your business. If you aren’t already utilizing telemarketing within your business then now is the perfect time to look into adding telemarketing into the mix to ensure better results for your business.

Is telemarketing expensive?

Telemarketing can be very expensive, but it depends how you go about it. Conducting in house telemarketing is generally the biggest expense. Set up, hiring of staff and telco all add up quite quickly.

The best bet for those of you looking for a hassle free way to incorporate telemarketing to your business would be to look for telemarketing companies such who are inexpensive, experienced and also offer a replacement policy. They should allow you to pay per hour or per lead whichever would work best for your business model. You do however need to be prepared to pay upfront if you want a high quality job completed. If you’re on a budget work out how much you’re looking to spend per week and then stick to that and grow your telemarketing campaign as your business grows. Most marketing companies will be willing to work with your budget and help you grow since it will also benefit their business.

To give you some idea, some Australian based telemarketing companies charge as little as $25 per hour per agent, from $25 per sales lead or from $33 per appointment. They can offer these affordable rates due to their special telco rates and experienced staff. So ensure you don’t get stuck with high rates, shop around and see if companies can beat other quoted rates!

How will telemarketing increase profits for my business?

As business owners we all know that fresh leads are a vital part of increasing sales and profits for your business. Telemarketing is the perfect way to ensure you have a consistent supply of hot sales leads, appointments etc.

One thing you should realize however is that leads are leads… whether they’re generated online, through word of mouth, via television, radio or telemarketing not every single lead will close, it is simply an opportunity for your business to present it’s products and services to an interested party.

So therefore it is important to ensure that the leads you’re bringing in from telemarketing will be correctly utilized and not expected to turn into instant sales. You must remember that telemarketing is a form of advertising your business rather than direct sales and you need to be patient with the progress of the leads and utilize them properly.

How can I utilize the leads or appointments properly?

Firstly you need a high quality sales team. If you already have one then you need to ensure that they understand exactly what a lead is, its not a closed sale… that is their job as sales people to close the prospect. It is simply a lead of someone who has expressed interest in your products or services.

Pick the correct qualifying questions. Many businesses dont put enough effort into the qualifying questions they select for their product or service. This is the most important task in setting up your telemarketing for your business. In order for it to be successful you need to ensure that the questions meet up with the end result you expect.

A great way for you to ensure you have covered everything you need in your qualifying questions is to run it by your sales team before submitting it to the telemarketing team. Your sales team will be the first to complain about leads so their input here should make for a more productive experience.

You need to ensure that leads or appointments are not being wasted. Sometimes sales people get lazy and they want to simply call a lead or visit an appointment and have them fall into their lap as a sale then and there. But unfortunately not every lead or appointment will be that easy. Sales teams need to be watched carefully by you as to how they’re utilizing the leads and appointments, are they giving follow up calls when the potential customer asks? Are they re-scheduling any appointment which cant be kept? Do they know the status of each lead or appointment they’re working on? These things are all important for the benefit of your business. Too often do I see sales leads being sent back for silly reasons such as “This customer had a family emergency and needs to re-shedule appointment” In this instance the sales person should be embracing this as a future appointment, there is already a sense of rapport being built and some information on the potential customer. This doesn’t mean it is a bad lead, and could in fact prove to be a much easier lead to close in the future than most due to the level of rapport being built.

Bottom line is you need to be tough on your sales team, scrutinize their work and whatever leads you believe weren’t properly qualified to the standard you were promised based on your qualifying questions should be returned and replaced by your selected telemarketing company.

How long will it take to start seeing profits from telemarketing?

It all depends on the progress of your campaign, sometimes telemarketing is a working progress so you should not expect dramatic results quickly. You need to work hand in hand with the telemarketing company you have selected to ensure the success of your telemarketing campaign and to see positive results. Sometimes you will need to alter qualifying questions in order to get the best results, this can sometimes be a learning process for both parties.

Usually things will run much smoother if you’re dealing with a company who has experience in telemarketing for your industry, product or service. Especially if you yourself are not 100% sure on what qualifying questions will work best.

Telemarketing companies can also provide insight as to what qualifying questions should be included if you give them detailed information on your product or service as well as what results you’re looking for and your sales process.

Generally if you begin your campaign with all the correct qualifying questions then you can easily begin making profits as soon as the leads or appointments are worked on by your sales team. This could be as quick as one week!

Does telemarketing have other benefits besides generating sales leads and appointments for my business?

Of course it does! Any marketing that is actively getting your business name and details out there will certainly have other benefits for your business and it is important to monitor this and to ensure you are getting the best value for your buck when investing in telemarketing services.

Don’t just look at telemarketing as a lead generation service or appointment setting service that will generate you just the leads or appointments you’re paying for. Maximize it!!!! Allow telemarketing agents to give out your website or business details to those who don’t exactly qualify or aren’t available for an appointment right now.

Not only will this increase traffic to your website but it will also provide you with future business and will expose your business to many people every single day! Most telemarketing agents are capable of making upto 400 connected calls daily, so why not share your business with as many of those potential customers as possible. The person they speak to may also know other people who are interested in your products and/or services as well.

Is telemarketing the only marketing I need for my business?

If you’re just starting out then telemarketing is definitely a great place to start, it is fast, effective and will definitely increase profits for your business and allow your business to grow.

But like any marketing technique for your business the more the merrier as long as they work that is. Combining your telemarketing services with things such as an online presence, sms marketing, email marketing, advertising through radio, newspapers or television, billboard advertising, and much more would only bring more exposure and business your way.

Like any marketing strategy you need to see if it will work in with your type of business and how you like things run.

All in all telemarketing will definatley do positive things for your business when i

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Telemarketing – How To Generate Business In Spite of Legislative Hurdles

The telemarketing industry is facing a serious challenge that has gained impetus in the last few years – restrictive legislation. Regulation of telemarketing services has the votes of the general public and is supported by both parties. While this puts some pressure on telemarketing services, it is also an opportunity for quality organizations to prove their worth by adding value to businesses and consumers.

Telemarketing regulations – a mutating challenge

The challenge of conforming to telemarketing regulations is further complicated by the frequent changes made to them. Old laws are revamped and new laws developed that often have overlapping jurisdictions. Telemarketing services have their work cut out in keeping current with the legislative environment.

Some rules that telemarketing companies must comply with to avoid getting penalized are:

Curfews: Telemarketers cannot call consumers at any time of the day. There is a specified time range within which the call should be made.
Do-Not-Call lists: People who have registered on Do-Not-Call lists cannot be called by telemarketers. Telemarketing services are expected to make this check before making a call. They can call the customer under certain exceptions only. Do-Not-Call registries are maintained at national and state levels.
Licensing: Though not applicable in all states, telemarketing companies have to obtain a license to operate. Some states also expect bonding of the company. This creates more paperwork and additional payout of fees for telemarketing services.
Mandating caller ID transmission: Consumers can use call screening to divert calls from call centers or choose not to receive them. This closes the door on telemarketers effectively.
Content restrictions: There are laws that regulate what a telemarketing service can market and even the form of marketing them. This is restrictive and sets more monitoring checks for the company.
Effective telemarketing – merging compliance and sales

In spite of the many restrictions imposed on telemarketing, it can be a part of a business’ marketing mix. Companies maintain their telemarketing efforts by following these strategies:

Optimizing on existing customer relationships: Telemarketing laws allow calling a customer who already has a business relationship with the company, even if she is registered in the Do-Not-Call list. By cross-selling to these customers, the business keeps the doors open for future sales. Selling low-cost products or loss leaders is an opportunity to expand the client base and increase the chances of making more profitable sales in the future.
Supporting telemarketing with other marketing strategies: Businesses typically use more than one marketing strategy to promote products and offers. For telemarketing, marketing materials such as direct mails, emails, and newsletters also work to introduce customers to call center numbers and obtain their consent for calls.
Getting permission to call: Telemarketing rules also exempt cases where customers on Do-Not-Call lists agree to receive calls from some company. Businesses can get customer’s consent through affinity programs, contests or special offers.
Being professional: The reason why telemarketing is regulated so strictly today is because of the indiscriminate cold calling practiced by unprofessional call centers in the past. The calls came close to customer badgering and telemarketing faced a lot of flak for it. Quality telemarketing services maintain high standards by respecting customer’s time and willingness to entertain a call.
Telemarketing regulations, though restrictive, have raised the bar for telemarketing services. With the weeding out of unethical companies, quality telemarketing companies can distinguish themselves with their services and strategies to obtain customer buy-in.

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Should You Employ In House Telemarketers or Use an Outbound Telemarketing Agency?

Even for larger companies with dedicated sales teams this is a valid question: should you use your own telemarketers or turn to a specialist outbound telemarketing agency?

For many companies, there are three compelling reasons to outsource your telemarketing:

1) Focus

2) Capabilities

3) Cost

This article examines these three reasons and suggests why, in many cases, it makes more sense to use the services of an external telemarketing agency for business-to-business telemarketing campaigns.

1) Focus

Firstly, a strong reason for using an external telemarketing company is that they will focus on the task of generating leads for your business. Many companies, when using an internal resource, will hand this over to either an admin person or expect telemarketing to be done as an extension of their role.

But, let’s be honest about what really happens in most businesses: they find something else to do.

Unlike an external company, which employs people to make outbound telemarketing calls day-in, day-out, your employees have other duties to perform. And, believe me, they will find anything else to do rather than telemarketing. The same goes for if you choose to hire your own people “just to cold call”. After a few months, I guarantee, they will be doing something (anything) else rather than telemarketing.

Using a telemarketing agency means that you have a resource focused on telemarketing for your business and you ensure a continual effort to generate leads, not the reluctant, ad-hoc approach you will get form your own people.

2) Capabilities

Hand-in-hand with the issue of focus is that of capabilities. By outsourcing telemarketing you will access people who are far better at telemarketing that your own people. Even if you have dedicated sales people they often won’t match a seasoned telemarketer when it comes to making outbound calls.

External telemarketing agencies also bring capabilities around data acquisition, segmentation, key message and “pitch” development which your own people will lack.

Think about it; a good telemarketer will pitch around 100 prospects in a week. Given that the best telemarketers have been in the game for at least 10 years, that’s over 50,000 pitches. That’s a level of telemarketing experience you will never get it from an in-house employee.

3) Cost

Finally, another reason for many companies to consider using a telemarketing agency is cost.

When comparing using your people, or even yourself as the owner of a small business, against the cost of a telemarketing company, the costs are pretty compelling.

Telemarketing agencies charge, on average around £250 per day for a telemarketer. That’s attractive even when you compare it against the cost of your sales people. But when you consider the cost of them not being in front of prospects and actually closing, the cost justification stacks up in favour of outsourcing.

When comparing an external telemarketing company against an admin person making “a few cold calls” the costs need a little more study but they still make sense. Usually, the best approach is to consider two factors: a) the cost per lead and b) the opportunity cost.

When looking at the former, external telemarketing agencies, which are always more efficient, typically wins. In addition, when you think about the opportunity cost of not getting new leads into your pipeline and the resulting lost new business growth, it’s usually obvious that using a telemarketing company is the best investment.

So, in summary, when thinking about whether to use your own people or external telemarketers, consider the total picture of how much focused your own people will be, how good they will be, and what is the real return on their costs.

We believe that, taking all these elements into account, an outbound telemarketing agency

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