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Follow the sun: The New Zealand Contact Centre Story

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Turning night into day

Outsourcing centres in New Zealand are seeing that they are able to offer inbound sprocess services to the UK. Culturally aligned and being 11 or 12 hours ahead of UK time, means that when its night in the UK, it’s just a normal work day in New Zealand. Regions like the Manawatu are perfectly positioned to offer outsourcing services at lower costs and with good retention to the UK market.

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Business to Consumer Telemarketing

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We talked last week about B2B Lead Generation. This week, I wanted to talk about business to consumer campaigns.

In the B2C field, making phone calls to a targeted segment of individuals can both create demand and educate the public about your business. This is an effective way to not only connect with individual buyers, but also build brand awareness in a specialised way, the ‘noise’ of advertisement sorely misses.

When using correct segmentation and only approach a relevant group, most likely to buy, telemarketing works brilliantly and consistently. Furthermore, when you craft offers and scripts that are of particular interest to your targeted individuals. The key is cleverly crafting campaigns to specific people and their unique, individual needs. Similar to advertising, where people only get annoyed when it’s not relevant to them.

There are no limits to the creativity and strategic elements of a B2C campaign can have.  One of my favourite examples was when a popular bacon company had gone through a dramatic packaging update and they wanted to ensure their loyal customers and other new customers ‘knew’ where they were. We completed a simple, non-promotional survey about bacon in general. People were also alerted to the changes in the packaging and where to buy the product. Who doesn’t like talking about bacon anyway?  Sales increased and nobody missed out on their favourite bacon.

Equally – if you are going to go to the effort of reaching out to large numbers of people, then you better have a good reason. Your offer needs to be of genuine value. Promises of exclusivity, scarcity or a time limit have to be sincere and easy to use. It may pay to test your offer on the first 100 people and review the response before you proceed.  Certainly something we recommend.

How Does Demand Generation Work for B2B Companies?

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It’s very important to understand the differences in sales and marketing strategies for different types of businesses. More specifically, this means looking at business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing. Different strategies apply to both and understanding how to use telemarketing for both types of businesses is the aim of my post today, to walk you through the business to business telemarketing approach.

Business to Business Telemarketing

If you sell a product or service to other companies, such a specific industry or job function you are in the B2B field. For these clients, telemarketing is the most efficient way to fill in their sales pipeline, which tends to be longer sales cycle with much more consultation in the process.

Though advertising can work, it is merely a scattergun approach and may never reach the intended audience. Using IT software as an example. This may serve as a particular function. For example – helps the finance team manage accounts. You could spend big bucks advertising to anyone that is in businesses – from anyone from the customer service team to the operation staff. Advertisers know how to over exaggerate their performance.  And you will pay for every single view or subscriber. Magazines exaggerate readership, by automatically assuming a subscriber will pass on a print magazine up to four different people. Website advertisers count every single page view as a hit – even when its just one person, looking at a few pages.

In effect, you waste tens of thousands of dollars delivering your message to people or businesses who couldn’t care less, which is why specifically targeting your tactics to the types of businesses who utilise your services or product works far better.

Making cold calls can be quite traumatic for some and takes valuable time away from sales staff that should be nurturing more developed (warm) leads. Having a team on your side to seek out and pre-qualifying potential business opportunities will save you time and frustration.

Every single  B2B lead generation campaign is unique. It may be our customer service representatives call your targeted businesses to ask a series of qualifying questions or book an appointment with the key decision maker.  For some campaigns, we are directly asking for orders and reporting back to your clients for follow up.  Others, it is following up on subscriptions renewals.  But in all circumstances, it ensuring that vital contact or follow up with your current or potential targets is happening.

The One4All Difference: Learn About a Day in Our Centre

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Let’s be honest for a moment; we all know what ‘stereotypes’ exist when people hear the term ‘telemarketing‘. This image is something we’ve spent the past decade trying to recast at One4All. As a New Zealand-based company with a 100+ member staff of bright, young, native-speaking professionals, we are anything but what those stereotypes support.

I want to take you through a day in our Palmerston North Centre.

The One4All Environment

Our café-style offices sit in the heart of Palmerston North, New Zealand which is an active university city featuring a walkable downtown. The offices look right into the city’s centre, making travel to and from work for our staff convenient, particularly since upwards of 33% of the population in Palmerston are between the ages of 15 and 30.

The daily staffs at One4All include full time business professionals as well as full and part time calling professionals, many of whom attend Massey University. This bright, university town vibe, ubiquitous with Palmerston for those who know it, has been critical to One4All’s success. Our staff, many of whom are ‘Generation Y’, come to work each day with animated and vibrant attitudes encouraged by a casual atmosphere geared towards their comfort but yet maintaining professionalism.

Why This Matters: The One4All ‘Core Values’

A key goal for One4All, particularly as it pertains to staff, is creating an environment built on feedback and mutual respect. Our core values—ownership, partnership, integrity—extend to our staffs as well as our clients. Working with young people, we understand the need to nurture them as professionals and individuals. Telemarketing, no matter how you go about doing it, includes a lot of rejection, and we work to help our people understand that the rejection they face is not theirs to own.

Taking this approach has paid dividends. As a company in an admittedly high turnover industry, our attrition rate is low and our employees among the most satisfied in the field. This means that when we implement our process and become an integral component in a business’s marketing plan, we have the confidence and trust to offer the ‘best of the best’ from our own team. Happy staff makes for successful campaigns and everyone wins.

5 Steps to a Successful B2B Lead Generation Campaign

Understanding the basics of lead generation is foundational in proper marketing, however, knowing how to use those lead generation strategies to convert prospects to actual sales is equally important which means running a campaign right from start to finish. As a telemarketer, most view my job as the middle steps of this process, but, in fact, a good telemarketer assists her clients in all steps so that they can take full advantages of their campaign and get the most for their time and money. Here are five steps you need to take in order to run a successful B2B lead generation campaign:

  1. Set the Objective for the Campaign
    There are several ways to use telemarketing, but the most popular are to book attendees for an event or webinar, provide an in person sales consultation, encourage subscription renewal, revisit stale customer database information, or offer a free trial.
  2. Nominate the Target Audience
    This might be your existing database or you may need to look at purchasing a new business list. For example, say you have created a piece of financial software most suitable for a medium to large scale businesses. You need to speak to financial decision makers (e.g. Financial Controller or CFO). The more targeted the campaign, the better the results.
  3. Craft a Compelling Call to Action or Offer
    This can be tied in with your goal. You need to create an event or opportunity that truly speaks to a core problem that the person on the other end of the phone would like to solve in their daily life, otherwise you are wasting their time.
  4. Professional Script
    In telemarketing, you have about 9 seconds to get a prospect’s attention before they hang up the phone or ignore you. Those new to this field often need help in crafting an opening that really works to bash through that wall. This is why working with a company that literally makes 1000s of phone calls a day comes in handy. Professional telemarketers know how an initial impression in terms of both what they say and how they say it.
  5. Thorough Reporting & Quality Checks
    Usually a calling campaign involves a high volume of phone calls. Carefully tracking each conversion and the leads to follow up on is as important as steps 1-4 combined. Otherwise, all the effort you put into the planning is for nothing. Leads need want immediate follow up if they are interested, or else they forget you or chose a competitor who does follow up, so timeliness is crucial too.

Our New Website

Well 2014 is set to be another tremendous year for us at One4All.

Of course we get to do business with the most amazing clients – some of which have been with us for over a decade.

In 2013 we had some very talented people join our board.

And now a brand new website that far better reflects the heart and quality of our business. What I love most about the new website, is all of the wonder pictures.  They were recently taken inside our contact centre in Palmerston North, NZ.  You can see a few of our terrific team!

There’s also a number of powerful telemarketing case studies of just some of the great work they have done.

What do you think?

What is Lead Generation?

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In a broad sense, lead generation includes all the actions your company undertakes to seek out and find potential sales prospects—in our case this takes place via phone. However, many people use this term as jargon to refer to telemarketing in general, which is not only incorrect, but overlooks many of the other important aspects of making sales in your business. In reality, companies engage in lead generation through a number of methods. Some of these actions are carried out through digital marketing, for example online advertising or email marketing. Understanding this subtle distinction allows businesses to not only better perform their sales function, but also properly place and use telemarketing as part of a comprehensive lead generation strategy.

 

Statistically the use of telemarketing for lead generation continues to be an effective method of qualifying sales leads. Think about it: despite the fact that spending big dollars talking to a large audience via advertising means your marketing is seen by a lot of people, the indiscriminate nature of advertising means that many of those people will not find your product or service relevant. What’s more, those who do are likely to quickly forget your brand amidst the constant streaming of advertising ‘noise’ thrown at us daily. On the flip side, telemarketing often generates a larger percentage of truly interested prospects as compared to the other, less personal methods since engaging prospects in a personal conversation about their needs, your products, and how the two intersect is a great way to position your company at the top of their minds.

 

For this reason, telemarketing for lead generation plays an important role in business to business (or B2B) marketing as well. The sales process in B2B is longer and more intricate than for most consumer products or services; choosing the right deodorant verses the right signage company, for example, has much less of an impact on one’s long term success. This longer sales process means that the actions taken by sales and marketing professionals are not so clear-cut—one cannot simply hold a newsletter signup and hope to get a customer. Instead, sales professionals are in dire need of qualified leads who are further down the sales pipeline and B2B telemarketing is a great way to accomplish this.

 

Effective B2B lead generation relies on the judicious use of telemarketing as part of a comprehensive lead generation package. Understanding how all of this fits together is the first step in creating this package for your business.