What really is the difference between B2B Cold Calling and Traditional Telemarketing, anyway? In truth, the basic fundamentals are identical. But, there are certainly differences.
Clients who hire VSA or create their own internal VSA-kind B2B cold calling teams want a prospecting arm – a group who finds possible gems in a pile of names and gives these possible gems to someone who will close the sale. Typically, clients who hire a traditional telemarketing firm are looking for a sales arm – a group who finds new clients and sells them directly over the phone, eliminating the additional step of using a sales person.
There is a need for both kinds of calling, but the two categories do not have identical skills, processes or technology. I am intent on defining the difference between the two categories because l want to help our readers find the calling team that best fits their companies’ needs.
Similarities: There are tremendous similarities between VSA-kind Cold Calling programs and the kind of telemarketing calls you receive at work (from a long distance company) or at dinner (from your local newspaper). Ability to get on the phone with complete strangers and talk! Hours and hours of telephone calls to find individuals who are interested in your product or service.
Belief that your product or service can truly help your prospect. Thick skin and ability to take rejection. Telephone sales skills to keep someone on the phone long enough.
Ability to conquer specific objections. Endurance, knowing when someone is interested and moving them into the next phase of the sales course of action Tracking results of each call. Make modifications during the program, as needed to ensure success.
Differences: The differences are subtle, but they are basic. Many firms who perform traditional telemarketing work also perform VSA-kind B2B Cold Calling programs.
Represent complicate products or sets, which require sophistication to explain quickly over the phone, and a sales person to truly close the sale. Typically call for high-margin or repeat-buy products or sets. Never read from a script, already when answering objections.
Ask open ended questions. Become knowledgeable about the product or service to answer simple questions and sound as though you’re sitting right in your client’s office. “Navigate” a prospective company’s calling system to find the right decision maker – typically this method not using an automatic dialer because callers might make 3 dials for every record to find your decision maker.
Update your record with the correct decision maker. Excellent notes so the next time you (or a colleague) call(s) the company you can reference past conversations. rule an interested prospect to a sales appointment – at some future date – and keep the sales momentum! Get off the phone as soon as you sense there is no need or no interest. This might be after one objection. Do not call a prospect again (by you or a colleague) – EVER – if he or she asks to be removed from future calls.
Never threaten your client’s reputation by being perceived as a pest. Don’t sell over the phone, only clarify possible sales/leads. Your job is to know enough not to be dangerous, since products or sets are typically quite complicate and require a sales person to close the sale. The program’s overall success depends delivering qualified leads AND on the sales person’s ability to close your appointments. Making a lot of appointments is NOT ENOUGH!!
This list can help any company clarify the technical capabilities, caller-skills, and course of action requirements to make a phone campaign successful. VSA is happy to answer questions, in spite of of whether you make calls in-house, are looking for traditional telemarketing, or want to outsource a B2B cold calling campaign.