The 4 major telemarketing advantages for B2B companies in the UK
Business to business (B2B) telemarketing is the direct sales practice of contacting businesses by the telephone and using that initial contact to build up relationships with contacts. There are many advantages to telemarketing and it offers more opportunities to business than making appointments for sales reps to visit potential customers.
The four main areas in which telemarketing can deliver a competitive advantage to businesses are:
lead generation - identifying new leads to pass them onto your sales team
customer retention - keeping customers and clients loyal by regular contact to ensure that they continue supporting the company
market research - gathering information and intelligence over time to better understand the needs of your existing customers and learning what will bring potential customers over from your competitors
data cleansing - the act of nurturing clients and maintaining information kept on them
Unlike B2C telemarketing, which is commonly seen as cold calling or a scam, B2B telemarketing is often wanted by a business. Imagine having a personal concierge handling every agitation you experience throughout your work - this outsourcing of problems is the exact principal B2B telemarketing works on.
B2B telemarketing has uses in both inbound or outbound marketing. Inbound marketing draws customers in through providing unique experiences directly to them. Some businesses focus on content marketing and social media to provide personal connection, but telemarketers can provide a direct one on one point of contact with a customer.
Outbound marketing starts with the company initiating the conversation. Most traditional marketing falls under this term, including advertising. For a telemarketer, outbound marketing is focused on managing leads, researching markets, and keeping customers.
In this article, we will discuss the 4 areas mentioned before, and the impacts B2B telemarketing has on each area.
Lead generation helps your company find new leads and convert them into customers. The strength of the lead improves the chance your company will produce a new sale. This is why many businesses still employ telemarketers, as the entire lead generation process can be managed with only one person.
Why is B2B telemarketing wanted?
The attitude towards telemarketers is reminiscent of the business world before the internet; local companies talking together to manage each other's needs. If there is too much choice in the market you're targeting, your customer is going to want someone to personally guide them through their problems.
With B2C telemarketing, people usually don't want to be contacted. Usually, their phone number has been gathered using unsavoury means and is interruptive to their day. Meanwhile, B2B leads are publishing their contact information deliberately to be contacted by companies that want to work with them.
This receptiveness makes it likely for companies to accept an appointment to discuss how your products or services will improve their own efforts to drive revenues. This takes telemarketing away from being a cold call and instead allows companies to warm to the insight your company can provide.
Proactivity in Lead Generation
There is nothing wrong with other methods of lead generation. These include:
Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)
Search Engine Optimisation
Each area is a welcome opportunity to generate leads. However, each strategy relies on your potential customer finding it organically. In fact, PPC advertising can be made impossible with a simple browser add-on that blocks ads.
The difference between telemarketing and these other opportunities is that the company is deliberately reaching out to customers that may have never found out about the brand otherwise.
With other lead generation methods, sales have to take place through the call any sales would usually result in contact via a call to the company regardless to finalise. This direct lead generation puts customers on the phone from the very start of the relationship, making it easier to push sales moving forward.
The personal relationship that telemarketing develops is the main reason why it is so valuable as a customer retention tool.
The direct access to the decision makers of a business allows for the complete integration of your products or services into a company. If they have a problem or suggestion, they have a dedicated phone number they can call to pass it forward.
This can allow you to build the services you offer towards the exact needs of a client, making your solution a continuously more viable. Over time, you can become the only solution to the services they need, keeping a loyal business relationship.
Telemarketers can also contact customers which have left the business over time. This is an area that very few companies look at, especially if they don't have an on-site telemarketing team. This is because the cost of bringing back customers which have chosen to leave the company can seem unviable for driving sales.
Telemarketing provides you with a cost-efficient strategy that can quickly reach out to lapsed customers from both the short and long-term sales of the company. This is done through customer care calls to learn how they found your products or services, and find out why they haven’t worked with you again.
Sometimes bringing back a customer is as simple as reminding them that you exist. The direct reach out is a sign of appreciation for their patronage, and pushing that forward is ideal for bringing back old customers and making them loyal.
It also brings in the opportunity to learn about why they left the company in the first place. If it is reasons such as lack of funds, this offers your company the opportunity to give custom discounts or offers to bring them back to your services.
Even if bringing a customer isn't an option, the final reach out gives you an insight into customer behaviour that can be used to identify problems in your service or product. This can be used to inform on new customers- market research.
Market research is the most important benefit that telemarketing provides. Although quantitative data is available through analytics services and spreadsheets the company has built in-house, qualitative information can only be gathered by directly talking to the people who use what you provide.
Talking to customers directly has always been necessary in business. The difficulty now is that companies are relying on digital services for these communications. For many industries, especially niche B2B service providers, the impersonal methods of market research do not work.
With most companies, they are more than happy to give you their time to talk about your product but only if you are contacting them directly. Emails are easily ignorable, as are messages on social media. Some customers may choose to have no digital preference at all.
Telemarketing makes it clear that someone has deliberately taken time to contact them, which puts the customer in a position to also spend time on the conversation. This ultra-personal market research provides honest answers that can be inefficient to gather through other methods.
A good telemarketer will monitor customer calls whilst talking to them to find out about the agitations they share. This can be used across your business, including in areas of product development, to deliver exactly what your customers need.
Knowing the way your customer feels in the moment is unique to telemarketing. A telemarketer has an intuitive sense of how to act based on someone's emotions, and finding out what is causing a customer stress allows you to target the product you're selling as the tool to easing that pain.
This two-way system of communications is unique to telemarketing. The data that is gathered builds up a structure of a company and produces a stronger image of who is using your brand. This can help build up buyer profiles, internal databases, or used in conjunction with purchased data.
Data management helps keep your information up to date and making sure further information is connected to the correct client or customer. One method we do this is through data cleansing.
Data cleansing is the manual removal of information about a contact, including removing contacts that are no longer necessary, to keep a mailing list up to date. Removing unnecessary contacts keeps the list data compliant and improves the deliverability of the email campaigns sent to it.
Deliverability defines the factors that affect how likely it is for an email to be delivered to its recipient. Having poor deliverability means that your email campaign will not be delivered to the customers who you are trying to send your email to.
Compliancy refers to how to compliant the list is to GDPR regulations, which ensures that personal data isn't kept without the consent of the person who owns the data. In a B2B sense, any corporate data is fair to use in telemarketing, but data from sole trader and partnerships is not. It must be consented to by the owner of the data as it counts as personal data.
Keeping a mailing list both deliverable and compliant is a real struggle for many companies, but spending the resources to maintain both allows for highly efficient telemarketing.
Telemarketing cleanses data as part of the practice. Personal information is unlikely to be shared over an email, but through a phone call information about who should be contacted in a company is easy to find out.
According to eConsultancy, 30% of B2B data becomes outdated in a calendar year. Businesses change names, addresses, websites, and employees as part of the process and being on top of those changes for your most important customers allows for the relationship to remain consistent over time.
As telemarketing expands, the benefits reach all the marketing and sales strategies your company employs. Understanding the customer and their data means you can target them better through email and content marketing, as well as produce advertisements in outbound contexts.
Are you interested in telemarketing for your business?
The core takeaway is that you must put your customer first, either through telemarketing or by using your own strategies to understand what they need. If you don't put the customer first, all your marketing and sales efforts will come off as if they were just made to make money.
With the extensive benefits of telemarketing and what it can provide across the sales and marketing process, we would like the opportunity to talk about telemarketing with you directly. Get in touch with our telemarketing team by calling us on 0330 010 8300 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.