Save money whilst generating warm/hot leads
Here's how (part 2 of 3)
Last month we discussed the importance of understanding your audience. This month we take a closer look at the SIGNIFICANCE of this research and how you optimise your talent pool to get the most out of your lead generation activities.
The significance of research cannot be emphasised enough. It is both about knowing what is interesting for them as well as matching to who you can offer them as a contact within your business. In other words, a true understanding of your prospects will enable you to match the lead gen capabilities with your staffing levels. What internal capabilities and time commitment do individuals within your business have?
All too often managers tend to push the research and telemarketing on to junior salespeople who simply do not understand what is important to prospects, confidence to speak and question prospects, or time to complete these detailed activities. Instead pressure is passed on to achieve short term targets.
All this does is facilitate short cuts to achieve a list of leads, which may or may not actually be useful. Rather, focus should be placed on delivering solid research, confident telemarketing, dedicated follow up – looking at the long term/bigger picture rather than the short-term gains.
What good is a set of leads generated from telemarketing or social media research if they are not actual leads? Believe it or not this is all too common a practice, as teams focus on numbers rather than quailty.
Finding the optimal balance between number generation (for lead gen bonus payments) to warm/hot leads for the sales team can only be effective through team collaboration and communication.
Take a good look at your marketing, lead gen and sales teams: what talent do you need for your lead gen campaign? what in-house talent do you have? what outsourcing could you benefit from? what are the targets in terms of time & ROI level you need to achieve the campaign goal?
Everyone turns to in-house rather than outsourced as telemarketing agencies are perceived to be expensive. Ironically a failed campaign (marketing, telemarketing, sales) employee ‘wasted’ time is more expensive than a short to mid-term outsourced telemarketer hire.
Having said that you need to ensure you engage the right telemarketing agency. Here are a few key points to look out for when doing so:
- Where are they based? Whilst not essential, as anyone can call from anywhere, you should take this into consideration. This will identify any language, cultural, general understanding of the economy and time zone capabilities.
- What is their experience? This is VITAL – you want to engage a person or agency that has worked in either your industry, your business requirement, your business size before – because they will be able to better understand your prospect audience when it comes to research, messaging and comfort in speaking to the right level of lead.
- What are they asking you? This is the way in which you can identify telemarketers to intelligent telemarketers. What do they want to know about your business requirement/industry/size/goals – the more they ask the better they will represent you.
- Ask for a recommendation – not just testimonial or case study but do they actually have a current/previous client you could speak to? Good relationships with clients indicate successful project delivery, something you want right?
Once all resource talent has been agreed it is time to start planning the collaborated efforts. Get everyone in a room / on a call, set clear priorities and regular communication plans, ensuring all involved understand what is required, taking individual ownership of their areas of responsibility.
Remember it is a team effort. Not an internal versus outsourced lead gen delivery challenge.
Next month we will focus on the follow up – all too often this actually loses interest of the generated leads rather than taking the prospect through the journey to becoming a customer. If you cannot wait, call me and we can personalise a campaign for your exact needs.
Having run a successful telemarketing agency for 20+ years there are many other experiences I can happily discuss with you.