3 Common Mistakes in B2B Telemarketing
Posted on February 13, 2019 at 3:10 pm
Outsourced inside sales and lead generation are growing increasingly more competitive. With the continued growth of digital marketing efforts combined with access to scores of information at the ready, buyers are more educated and savvy, and less accepting of low-level sales efforts and inexperienced telemarketing calls.
B2B telemarketing callers must be highly skilled and experienced in order to be successful in an increasingly competitive field.
As Principal and Co-Founder of an outsourced B2B lead generation firm, I am aware of the pitfalls of an outsourced telemarketing program.
Below are 3 areas where mistakes are often made in B2B telemarketing and the reasons why experienced callers are the key to avoiding them:
1. Prospect Lists
It is a big mistake to assume the prospect on a call list is the appropriate person within an organization to contact.
B2B sales that are complex in nature require a conversation with a key decision maker who can discuss business solutions and has a level of authority in the decision-making process.
Why experience matters – An experienced caller will research and evaluate the prospect list in order to reach high-level evaluators with whom they can start a conversation, often using referrals to target them.
For complex B2B sales, it is appropriate and necessary to reach the highest level executive in the organization responsible for the business solution being pitched.
Successful callers should not only aim to reach the highest level decision maker possible within an organization but also make multiple calls into several prospective buyers within an organization..
2. Industry Knowledge
Every industry has its own nuance, terms, and challenges. Understanding the industry and knowing the common terms and language and having subject matter expertise within that industry is going to increase your chances of a successful phone outreach.
A prospect will recognize a caller who is knowledgeable and willing to listen to identify common ground for complex business problems.
Conversely, it will be clear if the caller has not taken the time to understand the industry and is more interested in pitching a product or service than having a conversation and uncovering business pains and problems.
Why experience matters – Demonstrating industry knowledge and an understanding of the specific challenges it faces gives a caller a better chance at starting a real conversation that could generate a business opportunity.
An experienced caller will be prepared and familiar with industry terms so that they can be discussed at a business level.
Following through with every prospect is crucial to B2B sales yet is often where sales reps making cold calls fall short.
It takes professional persistence and multiple attempts to reach a prospect and connect with them over the phone; a caller can expect to make eight attempts on average before actually connecting with a buyer.
In my experience, fewer successes and low performance happen when reps trend toward making fewer calls to fewer contacts and spend more time with internal tasks that don’t produce actual results.
In his article “The Rise of the Silent Sales Floor,” Preston Clark, co-founder of Law Insider illustrates this point succinctly, “…when the hum of voices is replaced with the hum of keystrokes, you should be very, very concerned.”
Why experience matters – A caller with experience knows that it takes multiple touches to reach a decision-maker, and it is important to remain committed to pursuing a conversation with each and every organization to determine interest and not give up if the few first attempts fail.
It can be hard to make multiple attempts when there is little to no success at the outset, but a seasoned representative knows that the leads only get qualified when the calls are made.
Experience is also necessary for good judgment, and an experienced rep will know how to evaluate a lead and follow up appropriately to be professionally persistent but not annoying.
Outsourcing As a Solution
It can take a serious and lengthy investment to find, hire, and manage a team of experienced callers who know how to reach decision makers and engage them in meaningful interactions.
In a field that is growing ever more competitive, many companies and organizations do not have the bandwidth or budget to build such a team. That is why many of our clients have relied on outsourcing their B2B cold calling efforts to us.
Outsourcing, in the long run, saves time and money by providing a team of experienced callers who have the core competency and experience to generate positive results, leading to excellent ROI.