Getting Your Telemarketing Campaign Started

ARTICLE #4 IN A 6 ARTICLE SERIES

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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.

The Truth About Our Appointment Setting Program for Business Bankers

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Dunlap Marketing has been setting appointments for business banks for almost 20 years. The truth is, the work that we do is quite simple when you break it down, but what makes us successful is the very thing that sets us apart – time. We take the time to make the cold calls that business bankers either don’t have time for, or don’t prefer doing. Let us do the appointment setting for your bankers.

We are founded on a few basic fundamentals:

  1. Prospect records – The prospect records that are called into can make or break the success rate of a calling campaign. We are very skilled at building databases that contain the types of companies our business bank clients are looking for.
  2. Script – Messaging is an important component of teleprospecting. How do you get past a gatekeeper? How do you prioritize what you need to say in a limited about of time to the decision maker? We are experts at doing both.
  3. Tactful persistence – Calling a prospect once or twice usually is not enough, often it takes time and persistence. Our call strategy and technology work together to maximize appointment setting opportunities for your bankers.
  4. Open communication – Our work is useless if we don’t pass it along to you! We deliver daily reports with time and date appointments that are set for your bankers. Also, if you keep us in the loop with what’s working well for you, it allows us to be even more valuable with future calls.

We have many years of experience successfully executing our process with business banks. In a recent discussion with a current bank client who has brought in $3MM in new deposits since partnering with Dunlap Marketing 4 months ago, he summed up the work we do for banks as:

“Your company opens the door, the bank has to push thru and follow up with service and products. I am very pleased with the appointments. I would recommend your service to other banks.”

If you feel your bank can benefit from more appointments, please feel free to contact us. A 15-minute conversation should be sufficient in determining if Dunlap Marketing is a good fit for you.

Mike Dunlap                                                 Kaitlin Dunlap

281.496.9870 ext. 140                                 281.496.9870 ext. 180

miked@dunlapmarketing.com                     kaitlind@dunlapmarketing.com

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)