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Which Marketing Channels – Telemarketing

Should telemarketing be part of your business marketing strategy?
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Should telemarketing be part of your business marketing strategy?
Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications by Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications
Owner/Director - Sharp Minds Communications Ltd

Telemarketing can be a powerful element within a marketing strategy.  Direct and targeted, you can enter into immediate dialogue with potential customers – but not all of them may welcome such a bold approach.  Our marketing expert, Siobhan Stirling of Sharp Minds Communications, has pulled together a guide on how to implement this controversial marketing activity effectively to help grow your business.

Unfortunately, numerous scams over recent years have been committed under the banner of telemarketing; this has led to lots of bad press towards the practice and has caused a stigma against it. However, there are two sides to the coin. Many businesses rely on telemarketing to generate sales and gain new customers, because it is an excellent tool when used correctly and ethically and can allow your business to make more and better sales.

The Benefits

Telemarketing can be a great method to boost sales. Directly contacting prospects can help to build rapport quickly and establish a relationship with potential customers. This can help you grow your client base in your existing territory or enable your business to expand into new areas.

Cost efficient

Telemarketing can be cost-effective; there are no design or print costs to factor in, but you will need to budget for staff (or agency) time to make the calls and research costs to identify your prospects’ contact details.  The more targeted your list of prospects, the higher your conversion rates are likely to be, so it’s worthwhile investing in the research to make sure the people you are calling are in the market for your goods or services; spamming people who have no interest in what you have to offer could damage your brand reputation.

A positive image and a good first impression is important

Telemarketing can really help to boost sales if you are professional and respectful when contacting prospective customers. The first few seconds of a call are incredibly important because it sets the tone for the rest of the conversation; introduce yourself and allow the recipient to respond, look to build rapport quickly and work around a script. A script will allow you to formulate accurate responses quickly to questions and ensure the information you provide is consistent between prospective customers.

Not just about sales

Telemarketing isn’t always about directly making sales; it can be used as a means of gatheringinformation on existing customers. This can be extremely valuable to your business development because it allows you to discover which demographic is most likely to buy your product or service, which in turn allows you to create more focused marketing campaigns in the future.

Legal considerations

All telemarketing activities are legally governed by the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR), which dovetail into the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) that came into effect earlier this year.  This requires that you get the consent from anybody you intend to contact through direct communications, including over the telephone.  It is therefore vital that you make sure any consents you obtain are specific, accurate and up to date, and that if you buy contact data from a third party, that they have secured adequate consents.  Consents you obtain yourself are normally deemed to be valid for a year, but consents from a third party are only deemed to be given for six months.  Your can read more about  how to make your direct marketing comply to current legal requirements here.

The criteria needed for a succesful telemarketing campaign

  • Develop a full marketing plan
  • Set achievable daily goals
  • Have a well written, flexible script
  • Provide suitable training for telemarketing staff
  • Ensure there is support and commitment from management
  • Make sure you have adequate consents and all your activities conform to legal requirements

Telemarketing can help you to establish relationships quickly with new potential customers.  But you need to make sure you act legally and you avoid spamming people; you want everyone you talk to to take away a positive impression of your company, otherwise you could do more harm than good.

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