Essential Guide To Telemarketing Part 3: Selecting the Right Telemarketing Agency for Your Business Needs
While cold calling is one of the most successful and cost effective ways to generate new business leads, for many companies it can also be time consuming and difficult. So it is not surprising that more businesses are choosing to employ the services of a telemarketing company to make calls on their behalf. However, with so many different telemarketing companies out there how do you decide who to use?
There are three main categories of telemarketing company to choose from; large contact centres, smaller specialist agencies, and freelancers.
The most important factor in selecting which of these will be most suitable for you is to identify exactly what you would like to achieve from telemarketing.
1. Contact/Call Centres
Do you have a relatively low value product which you need to sell in large volumes? Or a database with many thousands of records which needs to be cleaned and verified? Perhaps you also need someone to handle a large amount of incoming calls?
Large contact centres operate around a high volume of calls. These generally consist of short, scripted conversations and are most effective when your product or service can be sold (and paid for if necessary) over the phone quickly and without decision makers requiring time or discussion with colleagues before purchasing.
Generally contact centres specialise in Business to Consumer work (calling individuals at home) although they sometimes also provide Business to Business (calling other companies).
Contact Centres are very good at providing a fast turnaround for volume based, low cost products.
2. Specialist Telemarketing Agencies
Are you looking to get in front of the decision maker in your target customer base when they are looking to buy? Do you have a niche offering that may have long lead times? Maybe you would like to build quality business relationships over time and build a steady, consistent sales pipeline?
Smaller telemarketing agencies are able to really ‘get inside’ your business to understand what makes your product or service different and what qualifies as a genuine, useful lead or appointment. As opposed to Contact Centres, you will be able to actually meet the people who will be making calls and representing your company. By being both independently proactive and working closely with you they can become an indispensable cog in your sales and marketing machine.
Perfect for placing a very targeted product or service into a new or existing market, such companies excel in adapting their service quickly and developing future sales opportunities.
Are you looking for telemarketing on an ad-hoc basis with no fixed terms? Do you need someone to come and work alongside you in your business?
Freelancers can offer high flexibility in their service and due to low running costs can offer competitive rates. They can work in your office from your database, providing direct access to the front line of the campaign.
Alternatively, if you have a very small amount of calling to do which may not be financially viable for agencies and contact centres to carry out, a freelancer could be an option.
Once you have answered these questions and decided which type of telemarketing best suits your needs, you then need to ensure that you choose the right company to represent you.
There are a number of things to take into consideration to help you make the right selection. These include:
- Do you like and trust the company? Remember these people are going to represent your business and will be the first point of contact for your potential new customers.
- Are you confident in the people actually making your calls? Success will hinge on your message being conveyed in a clear, concise and intelligent manner.
- Do they have a good track record and are you able to talk with existing clients? It will help put your mind at rest if you can talk with other companies who have used their services and had a good experience.
- Do they fully understand your product or service and the needs of the market you are targeting? Can they challenge your ideas and make intelligent business suggestions during a campaign or will they just tell you what you want to hear?
- Do they have enough flexibility to continually change their approach through the course of a campaign in order to maximise results?
If you are not satisfied with the people you meet, look elsewhere.
There are good Contact Centres, Telemarketing companies and Freelancers out there who will help you grow your business. Ask for recommendations and check client testimonials.