The best tips for succeeding at telemarketing: practical tips for improving your performance

Telemarketing has evolved greatly these past few years, especially with the rise of the internet and new technologies. Often considered intrusive, with unsolicited calls and aggressive sales techniques, it can have a negative impact on brand image and a company’s customer service. This is why companies are rethinking their approach by implementing more proactive strategies based on the quality of customer service, by using more subtle and personalized telemarketing techniques.

Telemarketing has also evolved in its choice of communication channels, giving rise to inbound telemarketing. The goal is therefore to bring the customer to contact the company and not the inverse. As customers take a while to make decisions—according to Outbound Engine, the majority of prospects need five to eight conversations before deciding to purchase—letting prospects make contact when they wish can be more profitable in the long run.

Telemarketing still has many challenges to overcome. Nonetheless, it remains a key aspect of sales and customer service for many companies. It allows companies to reach a large audience and obtain direct feedback on products and services offered. It is therefore important to implement efficient and adapted strategies to reach sales goals while satisfying customer expectations.

If you wish to improve your performance in telemarketing, you are in the right place. In this article, we offer you the best practical tips to help you succeed in your outbound campaigns.

Prepare well to succeed in telemarketing

To succeed in telemarketing, preparing well is essential. Working ahead of a campaign with your purchasers and/or agents can make the difference.

Define telemarketing campaign goals

Setting the goals of your telemarketing and telesales campaign is the cornerstone of your project. Knowing the goal allows your teams to be better guided and therefore better able to advise or sell during calls. The success of your campaign is found in the development of these goals. Determining sales goals that are feasible and measurable help agents remain focused and motivated throughout the day.

  • What are the goals of your purchaser?
  • What is your budget ?
  • What is your conversion rate?
  • What pickup rate are your aiming for?
  • What are your sales goals?

To set these goals, certain components are vital to take into account:

Know your target audience and your product

As a telesales representative, you typically speak with two kinds of people:

Current customers who want or need your offers;

Prospects who do not yet know that they want or need your offers

To sell well, it is important to know what you are selling. Make sure that your agents know the service or products well and that they are able to respond to all kinds of questions that customers may have.

But who are you selling to? It is also essential to identify your target audience. You must know whom you are addressing but also what their interests are, what tone to use when speaking with them, at what times to contact them…

Prepare a clear sales script

Supporting and training your teams will help you better succeed at your telemarketing campaigns. Having a sales script guides the conversation, allows agents to have a uniform brand and sales discussion, and helps agents in case of difficulty. This is why the guide must generally include information about your product or service, responses to common objections, questions to ask customers, and a convincing sales offer.

Create a positive work environment

Make sure that the work environment is favorable to selling well—calm and equipped with the right materials to avoid all distraction or interruption. A desirable workplace also means not being overwhelmed, without daily stress, and therefore more than just a place for meeting campaign goals. This is why scaling your teams is important. The number of agents must be chosen for each campaign, by timeslot and according to the duration of these timeslots. Do you wish to carry out a flash campaign? Do you wish to have a long-term campaign? How many agents will you need? According to your answers, the post-campaign analyses will be different.

Mistakes to avoid

Certain mistakes are more fatal than others.

All telemarketing companies that wish to get ahead of the competition must give their agents essential information to know. To do this, it is important to do fruitful research before each campaign and to share this knowledge with everyone.

The lack of segmentation is a very common error. However, the interest in investing in telemarketing services is in connecting with customers who correspond perfectly to your target audience. Otherwise, you will be contacting customers who are not very likely to spend, and it’s a great waste of time, effort, and money. Segmenting your customers means greater predictability and therefore greater advantages. For example, 60% of all people targeted by telemarketing agents are 50 years old and up. Rethink your strategies according to who you call, not just to what you sell. Beyond the lack of segmentation, it’s sometimes just a poor definition of the target audience or the absence of one, that hinders the success of your telemarketing campaign. Indeed, a large part of the overall success of your telemarketing campaign relies on when and whom you call. This is why it is important to call your target audience at the right time, when they are available. It’s not about the number of calls you place but the manner in which these calls are made. The mistake to avoid is to call just before dinner or when customers are leaving for work. To avoid this, it is worthwhile to rely on a solution, such as the solution of our partner OptimalQ. The Vocalcom phoning software defines the best call and callback strategy to increase the reachability of customers and reduce agent wait time, according to the type of phone number, answering machine detection, the number of callbacks, the timeslots, or agent availability. Connected to the Vocalcom dialer, OptimalQ defines in the call base a ranking system that allows the company to prioritize the order of outbound calls. In this manner, you can avoid calling customers too often and maximize the chance of pickup at the first call.

Use efficient communication techniques

In telemarketing, communication is an essential element for succeeding at meeting set goals. It must be professional, courteous, concise, dynamic, and adapted to the needs of the prospect or the customer.

Key communication aspects

The agent must use an appropriate tone and language. The voice must be clear, warm, and dynamic. It is important to adjust this according to the message being conveyed. The tone must be respectful.

The choice of words is crucial. Customers have little time and limited attention, so be clear and concise in your speech. Avoid technical terms and complicated phrases, and get to the point. Everyone should be able to understand you.

Attitude can be felt, even over the phone. A telemarketing agent must adopt a positive and professional attitude that can be felt in his voice during his sales pitch. Using voice analysis technologies, such as speech analytics, allows you to unveil important specifications about the customer and his intentions.

The agent must listen closely. Active and reactive listening that is also empathetic allows the agent to create trust with the prospect. This is an important bond for the success of telemarketing and debt collection campaigns. Listening closely allows agents to understand the needs and expectations of the prospect or customer and respond to him in a proper manner.

Techniques for good discussion and persuasion

Telemarketing is a domain which requires persuasion skills to convince prospects to buy the products or services offered. Make your argument and persuade by using techniques such as storytelling, listing clear advantages, and responding to objections.

Use storytelling

Storytelling is a sales pitch technique that consists of telling a story to illustrate the advantages of the product or service being offered. This technique is very efficient because it allows the agent to create an emotional connection with the prospect and pique his interest in the product. According to a OneSpot study, stories have a 22 times higher engagement rate than simple facts.

Use social proof

According to BrightLocal, 88% of customers trust customer reviews as much as personal recommendations. Using social proof allows you to prove that other people have purchased the product or service and are satisfied. It can take the form of customer reviews, testimonials, sales statistics, etc.

Showcase unique advantages

To persuade prospects, it is important to showcase the unique advantages of the product or service offered. It might be an innovative feature, a competitive price, a warranty, etc. As Nielsen reports, 60% of customers are ready to pay more for products or services that offer unique advantages.

Respond to objections

In telemarketing, responding to objections is a crucial aspect for closing a sale. On average, salespeople who respond efficiently to objections have a 20% higher sales success rate than those who don’t. But how can you do it?

First of all, be proactive: Adapt your speech according to the prospect’s answers. It is important to understand the main reasons for which the potential customers are hesitant to buy. Hubspot states that the main prospect objections are the following: price, competition, a lack of time, relevance, and concerns linked to product and service quality.

To overcome these objections, you therefore must succeed in being persuasive and making pitches that are solid and constructive. Accepting the validity of the objection and explaining how the product or the service addresses it allows your customer to gain trust, and he will be more likely to listen to you.

Nonetheless, it is important to always remain positive, even when prospects can be critical or difficult. Be courteous and likeable, even if the customer is not.

Mistakes to avoid during a discussion

Making an argument in telemarketing is inevitable. Nonetheless, you must make sure not to put pressure on your customers. Remind your agents that they are the first contact point with your brand; therefore, if the customer does not wish to continue the conversation, let him interrupt. Also give him time to make a decision. High-pressure sales pitches with offers that are «only valid for the next two hours” mostly turn off rather than win prospects. Use efficient follow-up to call back prospects in due time. 

Finally, avoid outrageous recommendations. Keep your call scripts honest. Do not lie, and do not generalize. Do not say, for example, that your product was approved by a society or an authority.


Implement follow-up techniques

Implementing follow-up techniques in telemarketing is essential for the success of your campaign. Indeed, follow-up allows you to maintain contact with prospects and customers after the first call, which allows you to maintain interest and improve conversion chances.

It also helps you establish a trusting relationship with potential customers by showing them that you are concerned about their satisfaction and that you care about their problems. In addition, follow-up can also help identify potential problems or conversion obstacles, allowing you to solve problems quickly.

Reaching out to prospects again

Contact prospects again—yes, but at the right time and in the right way.

Reaching out to prospects again is an essential step in telemarketing for converting them into customers. It allows your company to maintain a bond with prospects, respond to eventual questions or objections, and incite them to make a buying decision. This can take time, since customers may need to think or may be occupied with other priorities.

This is why timing is crucial. Too soon, and the prospect may feel harassed. Too late, and he may have lost all interest. The “Best Time to Call” feature allows you to stand out by advising you on who to call and when. The solution is capable of prioritizing calls by calling the right person at the right time.

Use the right tools

The performance of your outbound campaigns also relies on the tools and features your agents use.

Use telemarketing software

To be able to accelerate sales growth, and thus business growth, it is important to equip your company with telemarketing software. It will help you meet your goals, especially by automating your outbound call strategies and properly managing your contact files.

The Vocalcom telemarketing software predicts with precision when customers will be available, allowing agents to regular the rhythm of calls and filter unproductive calls in an optimal manner. You will generate superior quality leads in this manner. Our software eliminates phone numbers that are out of service or unlikely to lead to a sale on the basis of previous call attempts or demographics.

The Vocalcom telemarketing software also has many features which allow for more efficient and proactive management of your campaigns.

  • Creation assistant: Create your campaigns quickly, thanks to our integrated assistant that guides you step by step in an intuitive interface. Load your call files automatically from a CSV file or from your CRM. Your web leads are integrated automatically into your campaigns.
  • Script: Help your agents and new arrivals master your pitches, processes, and objection management. You also have the possibility of enriching your contact files and the information collected during the call. In this manner, at the end of each call, your agents qualify it so that you can follow your campaign results.
  • Call recording : Listen again to your calls for quality monitoring and continued training and coaching so that your agents can gain skills.

Conform with current laws and regulations

Our product conforms with new regulations. You can easily configure your outbound call campaigns so that they respect the law. Since our customers are based in many countries, we have created a complete product that is also flexible and can be configured easily. This is why campaign settings are able to be activated according to targeted countries. The goal is to offer you a universal product that adapts to all laws and is usable by all. We provide all the product documentation and support needed to help our customers.

Define agent dialing mode

Increase your contact rates and reachability by choosing the call strategy that best fits your company and industry.

  • Preview: Presentation of a contact file to the agent so that he can take the time to look at it, prepare his script, and then place the call.
  • Progressive: As soon as an agent is available, the call is placed. Only the calls that are answered are distributed to the agent. The advantage: automated answering machine detection. With a quality contact file, we detect more than 80% of answering machines automatically.
  • Predictive: Maximize your reachability rate thanks to over-dialing. The different settings available allow you to master your dialing and avoid overcalling your contacts. Thanks to the algorithm of its predictive automated system—the most powerful on the market—you can define the best call and callback strategy to increase the reachability of contacts and reduce agent wait times, therefore multiplying your contact rates three times.

Connect your telemarketing to a CRM

Connecting your telemarketing software with your CRM allows you to improve customer service and business efficiency. At the same time, you can centralize and optimize customer and prospect data while offering an overall view of the prospect relationship. According to a Nucleus Research study, companies that have integrated their telemarketing software with their CRM have recorded a conversion rate increase of 42%. In addition, this integration allowed a 15% decrease in average handling time of phone calls.

By connecting your CRM and your telemarketing software, you facilitate the management of customer and prospect data. The information collected during phone calls can be automatically integrated in the CRM. This also helps avoid entry errors and lost time due to manually entering data.

By having an overall view of interactions with the prospect, your agents can adapt their approach according to customer needs and preferences. They can thus propose relevant offers and services during their calls. They can also schedule callbacks and automated follow-ups for contacts who were not converted into customers during the first conversation. Prospects are therefore contacted again during optimal times, without the risk of bothering or forgetting them. 

With Hermes Universal CRM Connector, endow any CRM easily with the best omnichannel features of our telemarketing software and let your CRM oversee your outbound telemarketing strategies.

Would you like to know more?

Contact Vocalcom

Do tests and measure the results

To improve your telemarketing performance, you must measure your results and test different approaches.

Analyze data

Data must be at the heart of your strategies. They are teeming with useful information for your business. Use data from previous campaigns to understand what is working and what is not. Analyze conversion rates, average conversation time, the number of calls necessary to obtain a lead, etc. These numbers will help you optimize your next campaign.

This analysis also allows you to measure your ROI. Evaluate the cost of your telemarketing campaign against your obtained results.

According to the results of your analysis, adapt your approach. If you find that your conversion rate is low, try to change your script or use different sales techniques.

Optimize your results in real time

Overseeing the coverage rates of your prospect and customer files, the results of your campaigns, and the performance of your agents in real time helps you maximize your impact on sales. To achieve this, our supervision tool allows you to follow your activities and performance in real time.

Indeed, for a measurement of efficient results, the telemarketing tool you invest in will make a big difference. The Vocalcom telemarketing software integrates real-time dashboards with more than 300 KPIs that can be personalized as well as detailed reports. Analyze the results of your campaigns and improve the performance of your agents with our native tools for quality control: discreet listening, recording, whispering, chat, satisfaction surveys, etc…

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