RoI, RoI – if only I knew my RoI – Apologies to the bard!
Telemarketing is a communication tool. A tool, not THE tool. It is expensive to implement and therefore should really be considered and used as part of a joined-up marketing approach. In this, the final part of our series we look at how good telemarketing is monitored and managed and part of a joined-up plan – yet all too often it isn’t quite like this in practice. Telemarketing is easy to monitor. You are paying a day rate for your telemarketing staff. Telephone costs are consistent (and really quite modest these days) so your return on investment depends entirely on what you get out of this applied effort. No matter what many telemarketers tell you, it really isn’t all about how many calls they make! It isn’t just about working hard, it is about working clever. I have touched on this before but it is important:
- If the telemarketer is looking to make appointments, that’s fine, but get them to qualify the list while they are at it. Someone who is not ready for an appointment today may be a good prospect for the future so check out just how much authority/influence they have and how relevant your product/service is to them. Check their contact details and email address.
- If the telemarketer is checking and updating a database, make sure they are asking ‘qualifying questions’ where possible and if they happen to be talking with a key influencer, ask if they have any current interest – what is there to lose?
In either case, use the information from the calls to build a qualified database of YOUR market. You can then use this database to keep in touch with people by mail, email etc – both much cheaper than more telemarketing and both can be great sources of enquiries. With email you can track who is opening your emails and clicking on links – suggesting possible interest – which could be a great basis for some more, targeted phone calls to generate enquiries and opportunities – like I said, joined-up. In ALL cases don’t forget, one of the first things anyone interested in what you offer will do is visit your website – so make sure it says what you want it to say. Make sure you are proud of it. Your sales team (OK, maybe that is just you!) does the selling. Marketing is about looking for people to sell to; communicating your proposition to your target market and qualifying opportunities. It is a step by step process. Different communications using different media (both online and offline) have different impact and by using them in a joined-up marketing process you will have maximum control and the best opportunity to get most benefit from each step of the way. In practice, I’m not sure that Return on Investment for SME marketing can be reduced to a mathematical formula to measure an individual marketing acivity but the more you consider, understand and monitor the process, the more you can control it as part of the bigger picture.