Getting Your Telemarketing Campaign Started

ARTICLE #4 IN A 6 ARTICLE SERIES

feet running

When you sign up for a marathon, or any athletic event, there is a lot of planning that goes into training and the day of the event. While the planning is necessary and will help your marathon go smoothly, there is one fact: the only way to cross the finish line is by taking one step at a time. When doing appointment setting and lead generation, the same approach holds true.

This “one step at a time” principle can be used in many different aspects of work. Similar to running a marathon, looking at a prospect list that needs to be called can seem like a difficult task to complete. However, if you make one call at a time you will eventually get through your list and cross the finish line!

Making cold calls is not what someone puts first on their “to do” list. Human nature usually drives people to do everything else on their list before making telemarketing calls. Commonly, they hope that time runs out before they have to make the calls. Or, they hope their boss assigns them other work before they have to get on the phone. This type of behavior is exactly why many call projects either never get started or they are started, but are never completed.

When assigned the task of telemarketing, try to designate specific times of day to make these calls. Treat the assignment like it’s an appointment. Everyone is willing to stop what they are doing to honor an appointment. Schedule specific blocks of time in your calendar each day, over an extended period of time. Each block of time should be approximately two hours long. Additionally, set reasonable and measurable expectations, such as:

  • Number of calls made
  • Number of actionable events identified
  • Number of appointments set

Two-hour segments each day is enough to settle into a rhythm, but not so much time that someone gets burned out. Two hours per day over four or five days per week results in 32-40 calling hours per month. This much time will typically yield very positive results and selling opportunities.

Do not let yourself get stuck on trying to make the telemarketing campaign perfect before going live with your calls, as this is rarely possible. If you seek perfection, there is a good chance the calls will never get started. Accept that there might be shortcomings (ie: possible unexpected questions, questions you don’t have answers to, missing contact names). This is okay, but if you have followed steps 1, 2 & 3 there is a good chance you are prepared to start calling. You can refine and optimize as you go. Keep in mind these calls simply get the sales process started; this should be your primary goal. There will be future steps as you advance through the sales process to address questions that you were unable to answer during your first calls.

When someone asks, “how do you run a marathon?” the answer is “one step at a time”. Now it’s time to pick up your phone and get your appointment setting and lead generation campaign started, “one call at a time”!

Stay tuned for our next article discussing follow up best practices.

Thought of the Day – Telemarketing, Appointment Setting and Lead Generation

Is there a best time of day to call a prospect when you are doing your own lead generation or appointment setting?

I have this question asked quite often. In the big picture, there probably is a best time to call a prospect; the problem is we usually don’t know what the best time is for each prospect that needs to be called. Because of this, the worst thing to happen is not to call the prospects at all. Commonly, if you wait for the best time, the time may never come. Or, by putting off making a call until the “best time”, you get distracted by something else and the call never gets made.

Rather than trying to time your calls perfectly, just make them, especially when you are trying to develop a new list of prospects where there is no existing relationship. The game of numbers almost always plays to your advantage if you are making your calls. What is guaranteed is you will never connect with a prospect unless you make a call.

As you develop your list of new prospects, call them, and capturing important information, you also learn what certain people’s behaviors are. As you learn, you might be able to time your future calls better.

In my opinion, it’s acceptable to call at 8:00AM Monday morning, and it’s acceptable to call at 5:00PM on a Friday afternoon. Not everyone starts Monday late or leaves early on Friday afternoons. A great time to catch me is a Friday afternoon, late into the day. I find that our office gets quiet and I become very productive.

Pick up the phone and make the prospecting phone calls that need to be made……….NOW. (comments written by Mike Dunlap, miked@dunlapmarketing.com , 281.496.9870 x140)

Telemarketing Services Bring $1.2M in Quick-Push Sales Effort

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A long-time customer, who has used Dunlap Marketing’s telemarketing and appointment setting services for 9 years, called with a time sensitive project to promote a special 1-day sale. The project had been labeled as “high priority”. In an effort to compliment a direct mail and email push that the customer had already implemented, Dunlap Marketing called over 9,600 prospects inside of a 3-day period. Their job was to call the prospects and gain agreement to attend an upcoming special sales event.

The database represented up to 3-year-old records of individuals who had expressed interest in services, but had not yet purchased. In many instances, active communications did not exist between the client and prospects.

From all the prospects called, the client reported an immediate $1.2 million in new business sales that were signed on the day of the event. During the telemarketing calls, 287 individuals agreed to attend. Of these attending, 62 purchased and took advantage of great pricing. Because of the success of the telemarketing calls, Dunlap Marketing was asked to implement a follow up appointment setting campaign, calling prospects that initially committed but were unable to attend the sales event. Forty-six face-to-face appointments were set and an additional $354,000 in new business resulted from these appointments.

The customer described his experience with Dunlap Marketing as, “Very successful! I am very impressed with how quickly Dunlap Marketing designed a message and launched a call campaign that created outstanding results and revenue. It is amazing at how they responded to such a large prospect list. We will implement this same strategy again next year.”

Can a telemarketing campaign bring your business more than $1 million in immediate sales? Maybe yes or maybe no. However, if done correctly with a targeted call list, Dunlap Marketing can implement a “quick-push” telemarketing and appointment setting campaign similar to this. Organization, experience, efficiency, and well-trained staff members are all key ingredients to success.

Top 8 Things INTERNS Will Tell You About Telemarketing

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Describe your experience this summer with your intern job at Dunlap Marketing.

  1. “I had the chance to gain valuable real-world experience while also developing my leadership skills and understanding how important marketing/sales is to every aspect of business.” – Jessica, University of Texas, Marketing
  1. “During the campaign it is hard work, but at the end of it, there is a sense of satisfaction hearing the final results, and knowing you took part in the early stages of the sales cycle.” – Matt, University of Texas, Accounting

What do you consider the most important thing you learned during your internship?

  1. “How to be fearless in a professional setting. Having made so many telemarketing calls during my time here, I know I can go into the workforce and not be afraid of meeting with people and selling.” – Allen, Texas A&M University, Finance
  1. “You can’t wait for business to come to you, and getting business is not as simple as putting an ad out. Identifying prospects and turning prospects into customers is the only way you will be successful.” – Matt, University of Texas, Accounting

What do you consider the second most important thing you learned?

  1. “Hard work pays off – just because something does not seem to be working in the moment, business is a numbers game. It’s also a game of inches, and every inch you can get goes a long way.” – Matt, University of Texas, Accounting
  1. “The reasoning that goes into the businesses’ strategy. Sitting down with Mr. Dunlap and hearing him talk about why he does things and why he doesn’t will really come in handy in the future.” – Allen, Texas A&M University, Finance

What do you consider the biggest value that a customer receives from Dunlap Marketing services?

  1. “It’s the security of knowing that everyone at Dunlap Marketing who works on their behalf is looking out for their best interest. Customers know they’re getting a high quality service.” – Allen, Texas A&M University, Finance
  1. “The one-on-one interaction with prospects. Talking individually to prospects makes a big difference. With Dunlap Marketing, customers know they are getting friendly voices to adapt to prospect needs and lead them through the first steps of making a sale.” – Jessica, University of Texas, Marketing