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Wednesday, 11 September 2013 00:00

What Is B2B Telemarketing? The Answer May Surprise You.

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"What is business-to-business (B2B) telemarketing?" The answer might seem obvious: annoying call center agents randomly calling people with their sales pitches. We've all received those calls where the caller robotically recites a script, hardly breathing so you can't say a word.

But that's not a good way for businesses to gain new customers, let alone build good will in the market.

So, the better question is: What is effective B2B telemarketing?

And how can your business use telemarketing cost-effectively to build your sales and create a loyal customer base? Those are the questions we will be answering in this blog.

We started 3D2B in Italy in 2003, and expanded to our home country, the United States, in 2007. Over time you'll discover that we're passionate about providing value with highly professional telemarketing services. We want to share that passion with you and show you the possibilities telemarketing offers to your business.

To get started I'd like to provide a high-level view of the four essentials for an effective campaign.

1. Get Buy-In for Telemarketing

Too often, telemarketing campaigns don't have buy-in from the whole organization. It's a key reason so many companies try telemarketing and fail. For telemarketing to be successful, it must be well coordinated, supported at the highest levels, and integrated with the organization's strategic plan.

2. Use Telemarketing to Bridge the Gap

Whether the telemarketing call center is internal or outsourced, a campaign can't be conducted in the silo of either the sales or marketing department.

That's because sales people tend to be focused on the short term – sales leads TODAY. Meanwhile, marketing is able to look at the big picture, keeping their eyes on the faraway horizon. By working with both departments, the telemarketing call center can stay on message, and build and nurture leads that are highly qualified by the time they're handed over to sales. This creates teamwork between the departments-- good for business today and in the future.

3. Hire Well and Train Your Telemarketing Agents

Customers don't want to talk to an agent who's not on the same wavelength. Therefore, outsourcing telemarketing to third-world countries is risky because of cultural barriers and communication difficulties.

But language fluency is not the only requirement. Phone representatives must also have an in-depth knowledge of the industry, company, product and service offering. It takes a lot of training for agents to be able to engage with clients, answer questions accurately, and be equipped to follow up.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, they must have the ability to listen, and understand clients' needs so they can solve problems and unearth opportunities.

4. Measure Telemarketing Results

Many companies call a telemarketing campaign "successful" if they generate a pile of leads. But is it?

Any good business decision must be based on return-on-investment (ROI). That means looking at what it cost to generate the leads, the sales that were generated in the short term, and, in some industries, the potential lifetime value of sales from new, long-term customers.

Remember, telemarketing is based on building relationships. Don't expect blowout results in the first weeks.

What's Next?

That's the high-level view, but "the devil is in the details." The team here at 3D2B has many more in-depth ideas to share in future blog posts.

But I'd like to answer your questions first. What would you like to read about? What puzzles you about making telemarketing campaigns effective? Do you know how to capture the synergies of outbound telemarketing techniques and inbound marketing? Let me know what's on your mind.

For more information about 3D2B, visit www.3D2B.com or call +1 718 709 0900 or +39 06 978 446 60 (EMEA).

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