If you’re a small business owner looking for proactive ways to increase your customer base and revenue stream, these tried-and-tested outbound telemarketing tips will help you capture the attention of your clients and make them listen to your entire pitch.
Telemarketing is an effective way of generating customers’ interest in purchasing a product or service. Businesses also use it to promote events, generate leads, collect consumer data, reach out to past clients, and strengthen customer relationships.
Outbound telemarketers use the telephone as the main communication channel. Since it involves direct contact with customers, it can get pretty challenging. But with enough practice, good outbound telemarketing tips, and the right tools, it is possible to get over the obstacles in your telemarketing activities.
Outbound telemarketing is the activity of reaching out to potential customers through unsolicited phone calls. Its primary goal is to raise product awareness among the target consumers and encourage them to make a purchase.
Unlike other marketing strategies, outbound telemarketing is more proactive. When you use this as part of your campaign, you are not only releasing a material that can capture the attention of your audience and waiting for them to notice you. Instead, you need to approach them head-on so you can introduce your product.
Here are some of the outbound telemarketing tips to help you get started:
Prepare a solid plan
For your telemarketing campaign to take off successfully, you need to back it up with a solid plan. Begin with a clear objective in mind. What is the purpose of your telemarketing campaign? Specify if you will use it for lead generation, event promotion, remarketing, or other business activities. Will it be a short-term, long-term, or continuing project?
From there, determine your target demographics — consumers who might be interested in your offer. Based on the size of your target market and the length of the project, decide on the number of telemarketers you would need. If you’re a small business owner with a limited budget, you can begin with a small team and add new members when it becomes bigger.
Play the numbers game
Telemarketing is a numbers game. To win it, you have to get the numbers up. Despite having a quality lead list, your team can experience a lot of blunders during the day. There will be unanswered calls, hang-ups, difficult prospects, and undecided buyers.
Set a target number of calls your team should make in a day. Encourage them to make enough calls to increase your close-to-call ratio.
Set realistic KPIs
Identifying and tracking the right KPI or Key Performance Indicator gives you the ability to measure the success of your outbound telemarketing performance. Select only the essential KPI to avoid wasting time and resources.
Some of the important KPIs for outbound telemarketing include the average handle time, conversion rate, occupancy rate, and first call close.
Prepare quality prospect list
Knowing who your targets are is crucial in telemarketing. Get over the idea that your market is everyone because everyone can use your product or service. No, they’re not. Sorry to burst your bubble but that mindset is a trap bound for failure.
A high-quality prospect list is composed of individuals who fall under your target demographics. They tend to show real interest in your offer because it aligns with their needs or desires. Instead of looking like a pesky salesperson, you can appear like a reliable consultant ready to offer solutions to their predicaments.
Listen to your previous calls
This will allow you to determine the weak spots of your team. Get a sample of successful and unsuccessful calls and analyze the results based on agent performance. Once you find out the common denominator between the two, study how you could implement new strategies into your campaign.
Successful telemarketers know the importance of listening. While telemarketing is often attributed to chatty salespeople, those who succeed in this field have mastered the fine art of listening. Instead of hard-selling the product, knowing your prospects’ opinions right away is more important.
Active listening builds a connection and establishes trust. It enables your team to gather lots of information that they can use in their sales pitch later on.
Refine your script
Prepare a script as a guide for telemarketers in remembering essential information, avoid mistakes, and maintain consistency. But you have to remind them as well not to rely too much on scripts during a call. Your script should not restrict your team, especially when the situation requires flexibility. Train them on how to use scripts to fit their personality and style while highlighting information they cannot modify for accuracy and legal concerns.
Ask the right questions
Asking the right questions at the right time gives you the ability to provide your prospects with valuable solutions to their concerns. This could be about problems, expectations, and preferences. When they answer, validate their opinion even if it differs from you then courteously explain your thoughts.
Questions are tools you can use to arouse and control emotions. It unlocks different information that you can use in positioning them to buy.
Telemarketers, having the characteristics of a salesperson, might get tempted to talk non-stop about a product or service. However, if they do not learn how to turn their prospects into direct participants, they will only drive the prospects away.
Make sure to train and remind your team to treat each prospect as someone with unique needs. Motivate them to remain curious when talking with a customer. This will make the conversation interesting and worthwhile for both parties.
When a customer speaks of a certain problem, you need to compliment or validate the opinion to establish a bond. Even if their opinion differs from what you say, first you need to recognize it before coming up with your explanation. However, make sure not to overuse this strategy, as it may become quite irritating.
Be mindful of your prospects’ time
Right at the beginning, give your prospects an idea of how long the call will last — and stick to it as much as possible. Keep your sales pitch concise and ask only relevant questions. Keep the conversation interesting by omitting fillers like “oh” and “ahh”.
This way, you can save the time of your prospect while giving yourself more time to call the others on the list.
Here’s one thing to keep in mind though: don’t rush. Make sure you explain the benefits of your offer and give your prospect sufficient time to speak.
Watch how you speak
Introduce the product or service with authority. Remaining confident even during a difficult call puts forward the authenticity of the brand. If prospects sense fear or hesitation, it will leave a negative impression not only on the credibility of the agent but also on the brand.
Maintain a natural and friendly tone while explaining the product features. Practice speaking in a comfortable and relaxed manner. This way, the flow of the conversation will become much smoother.
Learn to overcome objections
Objections are inevitable in telemarketing. It’s also a part of human nature to object because of our rationality.
Keep your cool even when prospects counter your pitch. Listen to their objections and try to determine the reason why they are thinking that way. After that, take your time to explain your point without getting agitated. Use your persuasion skills along with other outbound telemarketing techniques to win the prospect’s trust.
Provide regular skill enhancement training
Let your telemarketing team get sufficient training regularly. Ask them where they are having a hard time (handling objections, asking questions, closing, etc.) and coach them on how they could improve in that area.
Provide specific training about your company’s product, sales techniques, communication skills, and other areas. You can also use this opportunity to conduct a mock call to point out the areas of improvement.
Hire the right people
Probably the most important out of all the outbound telemarketing tips here. The success of your telemarketing campaign depends greatly on your telemarketing team because of their direct interaction with your prospects. Look for some who have the attributes of a good salesperson — enthusiastic, confident, competitive, resilient, empathetic, good listener.
You can also look into outsourcing a reliable outbound telemarketing team to save you from additional costs in training, admin, and management.
Incentive programs keep agents motivated despite the challenging nature of their job. It also boosts their morale and promotes teamwork. Incentivizing excellent performance is way better than using fear. It creates a healthier company culture which makes employees satisfied with their jobs.
The happiness of your agents has a direct correlation to their performance as telemarketers. Their mood influences how they communicate with your prospects. So if you want to get good results, take good care of your team.
Outbound telemarketing is a cost-efficient strategy used to promote and sell products and services. It gives immediate access to the feedback of your potential clients, allowing you to create more effective marketing messages.
Its contributions to the success of an organization are not something you should ignore. Done right, it adds value to your brand and even spreads awareness even among people who are not often reached by traditional advertisements.
Outsourcing to a reliable telemarketing company is something you might want to consider. You’ll be free from the admin liabilities such as additional equipment and other admin needs. Most call centers offering this service also provide regular training sessions and quality checks. Just make sure to set clear goals and maintain good communication with your service provider.
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