We've been sharing some tips with online sales magazine, Sales Initiative, on the most successful approaches to lead generation in a B2B environment.
Have a good reason to get in touch
Senior decision makers who hold budgets are bombarded with sales calls and - not surprisingly – they will very quickly decide whether the call is relevant to them when they pick up the phone. In all likelihood, they have a long to do list for the day and your call might well be the third or fourth of the day – so you have to earn their attention. In the first ten to fifteen seconds, you should be answering the “What’s in it for me?” question, giving them a clear, succinct reason why this call is different to the others they have received.
Remember your objective
It is important to remember that you are not selling your product or service during an initial lead generation call. The objective of the call is to get them to buy in to the idea of giving you more of their time. The call should therefore focus on how you can help them – at this stage the main thing they want to know from you is that you are worth listening to.
When deciding who to target, less is more. Casting the net too wide will dilute the effectiveness of the calling and distract efforts away from the strongest targets. Particularly when purchasing from a data house – who have a vested interested in selling reams of data – it is important to be ruthless. Make an honest assessment of those who are most likely to respond to your product or service and limit the data to that.
Don’t treat telemarketing in isolation
Telemarketing should never be a standalone activity; it is one marketing channel among many. Have marketing materials to support your activity – whitepapers, product sheets and case studies should all be available for prospects at different points in the buying process. It should seamlessly link up with other channels – such as email marketing, social media outreach and events. You can start to sketch the outlines of a basic lead nurturing programme to guide prospects through the buying journey – telemarketing will be an important part of this, but it shouldn’t be the only part.
Set realistic goals
All too often, we see internal telemarketing operations fail – not because of any inherent weakness – but because of a lack of understanding of what the goals should be, and therefore how to measure performance. If you don’t have a clear idea of what the metrics should be for your target market – number of calls, number of decision maker conversations, number of leads, conversion rates – it will be hard to gauge which parts of the process are working and which aren’t. Explore what KPIs other people are working to – if necessary, try contacting lead generation companies to get quotes as this should give you a feel for what they work to.
See the article on the Sales Initiative website by clicking here.