Top 10 New Year Successful Telemarketing Methods

It’s the start of a new year! Time to brush off those cobwebs, wave goodbye to old bad habits and make some positive changes! The New Year is also a great time to look at your bad business habits and make resolutions for change.

Many companies run telemarketing campaigns, but how many run successful telemarketing campaigns? Here are our top ten tips to change your campaigns for the better in 2010!

Call 3Image Source – Andre Douque (CC license)

1.Make sure your data is up to date.
Solid, reliable data is the cornerstone of your campaign. If you don’t have up to date details and leads then you will find that your telemarketers spend most of their time ‘cleaning’ your data. This is obviously a huge waste of time – their skills would have much more use talking to potential clients than editing a database!

Data changes frequently so make sure it is up to date before passing it on to your team.

2.Be specific!
Whether you are working from your own lists or obtaining contacts from an external source, be specific about the person you are looking for. Databases these days hold an incredible amount of data. You can segment your calling group to geographic location, age, sex, spending habits, credit status etc. The more you know about your customer, the more specific you can be with your targeting.

3.Set achievable goals.
What is it you are really looking to achieve from your telemarketing campaign? Knowing what you want to get and setting clear targets to be achieved helps to focus your campaign and also gives staff an incentive to work towards. You may want to think about two simple questions: What do you want to learn from the call? And what do you want the customer to do as a result of the call? You may not always gain a customer but you can always learn from them.

Make sure that the campaign is part of a wider marketing strategy and not just a quick fix idea. The more you can maximise on this opportunity the better.

4.Learn from each call.
Your telemarketers should have the freedom to use their initiative and help you gather extra information and detail about potential clients to improve the success of future marketing campaigns. You can gather information on competitors, purchasing habits and the reach of your company through some very simple questions and comments. These can give you the edge in segmenting your customer base further for more precisely targeted marketing and sales campaigns.

5.Practice. Practice. Practice.
Many people will scoff at this idea but once under pressure even the best telemarketer can make mistakes. Once your team is ready, encourage them (or lead them through) plenty of practice runs before letting them loose on the public. Make sure they know every detail of the product or service inside out and that they are prepared for the unexpected. This is also a great opportunity to help them notice what great pieces of information can be given voluntarily by the customer, which you might later find valuable, and should be noted down and used in the future.

6.Be personable.
Many people are put off by callers who are either too friendly (it can actually make them hesitant and skeptical) or too aggressive (for obvious reasons). Your team of telemarketers need to listen to the tone of the person on the other end and try to use ‘tactics’ to help them change their mood or reaction to one that is positive and easy to work with. For example:

Your staff:
(warmly greet)”Good afternoon X.”
(invite) “Do you have a minute for me to ask you about Y?”

(dismiss) “Actually it isn’t convenient”

Your staff:
(genuinely appease) “Oh I’m sorry.”
(softly prod) “Would there be a time that’s more convenient?”

By giving a genuine reaction the customer will feel like they are being treated as an individual and not just a name on a list.

7.Use the best staff possible – and train them well.
This is not an easy job. It does require skill, tact, strong listening and communication skills. The longer your staff have been with you, the better they will know your products or services, and the better they will become at knowing your customer and how to speak with them.

We’ve already mentioned how important it is that they gather information for you and that they know how to be personable. You also have to make sure that they get adequate time to prepare and ask you questions about their targets and the products/services being marketed.

Remember that these people are on the front line and you should value and consider any suggestions that they make.

8.Monitor and evaluate regularly
Don’t just wait until the end of your campaign to do an evaluation. A weekly evaluation or progress meeting is a great idea. It gives you an opportunity to speak with staff, check on targets and identify where there may be a need for change. Doing this regularly will ensure that you keep on track and raise motivation within the team.

9.Don’t be afraid to make changes.
If you find that certain elements of your campaign are not working, change them! It would be mad to continue on with a campaign that is under-performing, but many people assume it will ‘get better’. Make sure that you are evaluating the campaign regularly and that the management team who are overseeing it remain reactionary. Remember, you are learning all the time, so you should never have to make guesses.

10.Get someone to do it for you!
Why not engage a company to manage your campaign for you. Our team of talented telemarketers, who specialise in IT, are fully trained to make the best out of every call. Briefed on exactly what you are looking for, you can be safe in the knowledge they are doing the best job possible…and without any nasty bad habits! Need to boost your sales? Let Virtual Sales Ltd help you get off to a flying start, contact us today for further details today.

Andy Dickens

Andy Dickens is a veteran of IT Sales, used to leading by example. He is the CEO of Virtual Sales Limited (VSL) who offer telesales, telemarketing, lead generation and appointment setting services to B2b businesses. He previously was Sales Director EMEA for Red Hat and before that ran sales at Visio before it was acquired by Microsoft.