Telemarketing was considered an extremely effective marketing tool for many years, but its popularity has diminished in recent years. This probably began when digital communications exploded into a variety of channels. The misconstrued belief that telemarketing is merely proficient as a cold calling tool has helped to stoke this negative image. Some believe that telemarketing had its heyday and is no longer relevant in today’s marketing climate. When competing with computers, social media, and organic searching, the telephone seems to have been left behind. Right? Wrong.
Erasing the misconception
What does the growth in digital communication channels mean to the marketing world? Put very simply, the blink of an eye is not fast enough, metaphorically speaking, to describe how quickly a lead can be converted into a sale. Omnichannel marketing has made this possible.
Omnichannel marketing focuses on the buyer. If he taps his phone, tablet, or computer, or if he sends an email, he can receive a response in seconds. Responses reflect the visibility of all data about the buyer and his potential purchases that are in the system, regardless of his channel-switching behaviour.And here’s the important point: Any omnichannel marketing plan that does not include a telemarketing channel is going to lose out. This is evident in the B2C marketplace but can be even more relevant to the B2B marketplace.
Why a telemarketing rounds off a competitive marketing plan
The variables that come into play during the course of a purchase are too many to be able to define a step-by-step omnichannel purchasing process. Ultimately, at some point, the buyer or seller will need to make a phone call—or two. There is only so much back and forth that can be conducted between buyer and seller by means of tweets and WhatsApp messages during the purchaser’s fact-finding mission. These channels, together with email, are effective tools while conducting research. However, a Question & Answer call should take place at a certain point. Only a live conversation can facilitate a discussion with satisfactory responses.
Timing is everything
Omnichannel marketing strategies allow sellers to keep an eye on the purchaser’s data and thought processes. The seller can guage exactly when the purchaser reaches a blank wall. An interventive call at this point would be the right time to breach the wall and begin converting the lead. Similarly, the buyer may himself decide to take his process deeper at a certain point, and turn to a friendly voice.
The trust factor
It’s difficult to retain confidence in a business process without the awareness of either a brick and mortar location, or a live person—particularly in the B2B space. However, the behaviours of the B2C sector are starting to replicate this. Although placing your trust in an enterprise may have more to do with proven records than personal relationships, there is no question that speaking to a live person does ease the mind of a purchaser, where no other means of bolstering trust exists.
B2B marketing campaigns are all about fostering relationships. B2C relationships are important as well, but many consumer purchases really are one-time events. Partnering with another business, on the other hand, requires developing and retaining a relationship. Listening and talking.
Call Center technology
Telemarketing today can be made easy and successful with state-of-the-art call center technology. Telephony with built-in CRM software speeds up the B2B marketing process. Predictive technology combined with statistical analyses cuts the labour and time typically invested in a campaign. Call centers start the telemarketing process and keep you connected throughout the omnichannel marketing process.
Single channel sales campaigns are becoming less desirable
Today, omnichannel marketing plans require multiple voices. Parallel channelling geared towards buyer satisfaction within the B2B purchasing process require, and perhaps, demand, the same interactive channels made available to the B2C purchasing process. These include social media, chat rooms, email, organic searching, and one-to-one telephone conversations. The lines between consumer and business sales are beginning to break down, allowing for more global strategising within the digital and human business spaces.