Boutique Telemarketing Firm vs Call Center – Which is Right for You?
Boutique Telemarketing Firm or Call Center – Which is Right for You? Right or wrong, call centers have a reputation as a place where thousands of identical calls are made each day and there is little room for personalized customer service.
It’s true that agents at most call centers work from a script that is, for the most part, set in stone. They also speak mainly to lower-level managers who are not usually authorized to make high-level decisions. Most of these managers are interested only in finding the best deal or lowest price.
Thinking a large call center is your only option can be discouraging if you need help with specialized tasks such as:
- Getting past gatekeepers
- Talking directly with decision makers
- Making complicated cold calls to top-level executives
- Setting appointments
- Generating qualified leads
- Nurturing existing leads
Thankfully, there is an option other than a large call center. A boutique telemarketing firm. While large call centers can work well in situations where people simply order products, boutique firms use highly-trained sales professionals that act as an extension of your sales team. But don’t be fooled, despite their high-touch approach, boutiques firms are well able to handle a large numbers of calls.
One of the most important differences between a large call center and a boutique firm is the type of training agents undergo. Since the goals of most call center agents are very specific, and they are discouraged from going “off script,” they need less professional development than their counterparts at a boutique firm.
Agents at boutique firm, on the other hand, are highly-trained professionals who must understand the intricacies of lead generation, lead nurturing, and appointment setting. They also must be able to get past gatekeepers and establish strong relationships with decision makers.
It is important to note that boutique firms and call centers each have a place and one is not better than the other. Instead, which is better depends on your unique needs. In most cases a call center works best when you are selling a pre-existing commodity to mid-level executives or purchasing agents. A boutique firm works best when you have a complex product or service that can be modified for specific customer needs and you need to interact with high-level decision makers or executives.
Can Telemarketing Replace Face-to-Face Interactions?
Many companies have made the decision to use telemarketers to handle small or inactive accounts and prospects. This decision has proved effective and is based on several factors.
Telemarketing can complement salespeople in the field by reaching out to new customers or markets without committing a great deal of time, money, or manpower. Telemarketers can also sell products and services to existing clients in places where there are no salespeople available or when sending a member of the sales team would be cost-prohibitive.
Telemarketing makes good financial sense when it comes to interacting with customers who generate revenue, but not enough revenue to justify traveling long distances to meet with them on a consistent basis. Since these customers can constitute a large part of a company’s business, it is essential that they are well taken care of. However, they still do not generate enough sales to pull resources away from a company’s top-tier clients.
By hiring a professional telemarketing firm, all customers are nurtured in a way that makes them feel valued. Using telemarketing for a portion of a company’s clients means that there won’t be a strain on the company’s bottom line. What’s best, many of the accounts serviced by telemarketing are so well taken care of they eventually grow into top-tier accounts.
Companies must make the careful distinction between which accounts should be called on in-person, and which should be taken care of via telemarketing. Many business owners may be surprised to find that even some lucrative clients do better with telemarketing. This is especially true when their purchasing cycle is already well-established. Often these customers actually prefer not to take the time for face-to-face interactions. After all, time is money.
Telemarketing also works well for inactive accounts that may or may not become active again. These clients certainly need to be nurtured, but sending salespeople to call on them cannot always be financially justified.
If you have not considered the idea of using telemarketing to support your sales team, you may want to explore that option. Telemarketing is a great way to nurture and connect with potential and existing customers so that they don’t fall through the cracks or put unnecessary strain on your company’s finances.
In Today’s Digital Marketing World, Telemarketing Still Reigns King
In today’s competitive business environment, marketing your product or service takes a multi-channel approach. And while it might seem that in such a highly digitized world, telemarketing wouldn’t be as relevant as it once was but that is not the case.
Although telemarketing has been around since the 1970s, the technology and tools it uses presently are as sophisticated as any currently available. Further, just because there are new marketing tools available, it doesn’t mean that the tried-and-true methods are no longer useful.
Study after study has shown that even with marketing tools like social media, search engine optimization, and interactive websites, it is tough to beat the value of talking to a customer one-on-one. Telemarketing’s highly-personalized conversations are especially effective for lead generation and lead nurturing.
Today’s telemarketers are adept at using new technology to make what they do more effective. For example, armed with big data, telemarketers can pinpoint who to talk to, when to talk to them, and what to say.
Experts anticipate a rise in more personalized marketing techniques in the coming months. And talking one-on-one with potential customers is as about as personal as it gets. Telemarketing is expected to continue to grow in popularity because savvy marketers know to put their money in methods that have the best return on investment. Telemarketing is one such investment.
While technology is helping to make sure that telemarketing remains on the cutting edge of marketing, the human element is what makes it so successful. This is one reason why you should strongly consider outsourcing your telemarketing campaign. Professional telemarketing companies have a firm grasp on how to harness information and use it to achieve the desired results. They also have a team of professionals who are experienced in connecting with decision makers over the phone.
It is important to remember that today’s successful telemarketing efforts have carefully formed objectives. These include:
- A marketing plan with accounting and analysis criteria
- Effective scripts, sales outlines, and presentations
- Training and hiring procedures for supervisors and sales personnel
- Analysis and evaluation of all campaigns, marketing personnel, and return on investment
- Established goals
- Emphasis on follow-up
Telemarketing is anything but a thing of the past. Instead, its evolution over the years has made it one of the most effective and affordable marketing techniques available today.