Does telephone-call-based appointment setting still work?

This is a question I hear more and more frequently. 

The quick answer? Yes. 

The long answer? Yes, but let’s talk about it. 

First, if you agree that not every business person responds to only one prospecting method, then I suggest effective B2B prospecting includes the use of multiple prospecting methods, such as:

  • Social media (Linked In, Instagram, Facebook, etc.)
  • Traditional advertising (print, radio, TV, etc.)
  • Website – website optimization
  • Paid placement ads
  • Telephone calls
  • Emails

If your style is to focus only on select methods, there is a chance you are missing out on reaching decision makers that do not utilize the methods you choose to use. For example, if your primary approach is to sell business through social media tools, it’s likely that your message will not connect with a decision maker who does not use social media platforms.  

What should be expected is if you use social media, your message will be delivered to people who also use that platform.  On the flip side, it is not reasonable to expect your message to jump across different marketing methods to reach a broader range of decision maker who might not be connected to various marketing methods.

A second point –  I commonly speak with companies who are interested in hiring Dunlap Marketing. It’s also common for our first conversation to start with the representative sharing their opinion that they don’t think telephone based cold calling does not work.  I always find this interesting as they initiated the call to me.

I have learned over the last 28 years of running my company that what they are actually trying to share with me is the fact that they DO NOT LIKE making prospecting phone calls themselves, or they DO NOT TAKE these types of calls when they come to them.  I then respond by asking, “in your opinion, does cold calling not work simply because you do not like making or taking phone calls?”

Telephone call prospecting (telemarketing) works and it is very effective at reaching and talking with prospects, but it does not reach every prospect.  It is a great way, and a unique way to have a two-way conversation with a prospect.  

Ask yourself, how many outbound prospecting methods allow a human-to-human two-way conversation? It is a great way to maximize your investment or efforts when using other marketing methods.  Phone calls allow you to advance your sales process even when you are unable to speak with the right person.  Examples:

  • 1st – you can gather intelligence from influencers or others who are informed of current status
  • 2nd – you can leave a voicemail message which allows you to keep your name front of mind with the right person

Both are positive outcomes.

Keep in mind, phone calls require a degree of tactful persistence and patience.  You have to stay with it if you want results.  In this high-tech world that we live in, evidence shows that targeted teleprospecting generates successful new business transactions.  

For more information, contact Mike Dunlap:


Phone: (281) 496-9870 x140