Software telemarketing and follow-ups go hand in hand. There is never a guarantee that you can score a lead (let alone a sale) during the first call. In fact, the rise of criticism against cold calling might as well have killed what little guarantee there was left in the first place. Furthermore, as a CRM software vendor, you might occasionally have your image as a tech company work against you if you resort to telemarketing. Wrong or right, it is a popular opinion that the landline phone is going the complete opposite direction of advanced.
It’s hard to deny that when it comes to B2B lead generation for EMR, you might find yourself navigating a phone network that sharply differs from your usual business establishment: a hospital. Unlike your typical office filled with workers carrying paper work, accountants at keyboards, and CEOs in suits going here and there for a meeting, hospitals are filled with nurses with prescriptions, doctors rushing towards emergencies, and patients being transported on wheelchairs or in worse cases, stretchers.
Still, that’s all the more reason for you to communicate with the ones in charge of these places and tell them about your EMR system. You should know well enough yourself to not underestimate the importance of a medical record in a hospital setting. Laboratory results, history of illnesses, and printed prescriptions are all key to streamlining the flow of data. The faster and more efficient this data is transmitted, the same will go for any emergency situation or even just a faster diagnosis for a quicker cure.
However, as stated above, navigating the phone network of a hospital can be far different from navigating the phone network of any other business enterprise. Now while you can draw some similarities between setting up business appointments in the medical field and the rest of the business world, this is one of those moments where it’s best to keep the differences in mind this time.
On the subject of similarities though, leads for EMR have a good deal in common with leads for other B2B software. One way is actually telemarketing. Unlike the telemarketers of the B2C sector, B2B telemarketers are in fact a lot more careful when it comes to contacting the target decision makers who stand for the companies they are calling.
Hospitals have numbers for various reasons. One that’s common is of course the emergency numbers. Still, you’re a business. The only emergency you’re likely to have in this situation is a lack of leads to make sales. With that in mind, you need to pay careful attention to the contact information representing your medical leads. If you end up dialing a number in a hospital dedicated towards emergencies, you’re going to end up in a lot of trouble. (If not not you, then at least whoever gave you such poor unqualified information.)
Then again, such poor information and cold calling could simply be the result of inexperience. It’s actually quite understandable. Your area of expertise is providing software for medical institutions and that may not necessarily make you an expert in generating leads.
In that case, simply use outsourced telemarketing. Do take note though that you shouldn’t just go looking for any software telemarketer. Be critical and seek out only those with a good deal of years deposited in their experience. Such a lengthy amount of time mastering the art of telemarketing for leads can indicate that they’ve learned enough about targeting medical institutions to determine if they are calling the proper number. On the other hand, the important role of your EMR should still give you enough reason to not dilly-dally. Start looking for a medical software telemarketer today and save yourself the hassle of navigating the tense network of the hospital setting.
ERP software companies should know all about the importance of client feedback. The information obtained from what your clients have to say can play a significant role in many areas (from product development to more lead generation). Since you’re a B2B-oriented market, the feedback you’ll be getting is most likely from the executives and decision makers who you hoped to benefit with your software. Observations, surveys,and even complaints can all tell you important things about how your product is doing. In terms of development, it obviously tells you what you need to fix, improve, and add. The innovations you have created from applying the feedback can then be used to spark the interest of previous clients and turn them into new leads. If that’s not the case, then you at least have an idea of what you can make to generate the interest of entirely new prospects.
Still, what’s the best way of getting and analyzing this feed back? Since your firm is likely to be computer savvy, a dependence on the internet is expected. You leave virtual forms to be filled on your company’s website or give them an email address to send their concerns.
Unfortunately, a reliance on only this single method can have some inconvenient drawbacks. Spam filters might make a mistake of blocking out the messages because they’re lost in the streams of junk mail that you might also receive. You’d also have to worry about getting them in larger bulks and sifting through each individual letter or form. Some forms and emails can be too short and simple, others too long and convoluted. You’ve got hackers to worry about too.
There are even people who become immediately cynical at the sight of an internet form. The reasons cited above make it hard for them to believe that you take their input seriously. You have to admit, it can be too automated and dull.
Why not try giving them a number instead? Letting them call your firm personally allows for simpler but also more animated dialogue between you and your client. Of course you might be thinking that the prospect of receiving so many calls, even for a B2B product, can be a little bit overwhelming for one person such as yourself.
Well, who said you have to do this alone? Simply get groups of people to take the calls for you! In case you then might think that you lack resources to hire and train such personnel, then you’re forgetting what outsourcing is for.
Telemarketing services aren’t just focused towards randomly cold calling people on the phone everyday (contrary to some misconceptions some people have). You can have their people take inbound calls too. In fact, some telemarketing blogs actually state that taking inbound calls are relatively easier compared to going outbound. At least in inbound, the client calling has heard of the product and has already shown a mild level of interest. They even come with technology that is specifically geared for helping draw information on client feedback (be it via reports or even recorded phone conversations). Contact a reputable software company today and start getting the feedback you need!
It’s rather painful when one hesitates to use telemarketing for business lead generation all due to the scams of those who have abused and made a bad name for the practice. And this just isn’t painful for those who find that telemarketing is their only other option, it’s also painful for telemarketing agents who are being smeared by those who misuse their methods.
However, do take note that these people hold themselves up to very high (and very costly) standards in order to distinguish themselves from scammers as well as provide you with cost-efficient means to contact your leads. Here are just some of these standards so that you can assure yourself that you’re outsourcing to a legalized, quality service.
First off is technology. Professional call center agents use either headsets or at least the latest phone technology to help them speed through the lists of people or businesses they need to qualify for leads. It also makes it easier for them to take notes and perform smoother multi-tasking. Another trait to keep an eye out for (or in this case, ear) is the sound quality of their technology. If the agent on the other end can be heard clearly and coherently, then it shows that they’ve invested good money in their hardware.
Second would be minimized cold calling. The secret to this is a wide and up-to-date database of business contacts. Make sure that your telemarketer has quality data analysts who are capable of breaking down their information strictly to the specifications of your business. In this manner, the agents can be given an appropriate script and also be equipped with enough knowledge about the contact’s problems. Keep in mind though, this emphasis on information is the reason why telemarketing sees bigger use in the B2B area of the marketplace. While it takes greater work to do research into a company, calling an office telephone isn’t as shady compared to calling private individuals in their homes. The information they gather will also help break down the information to only those most likely to be in need of the client’s products and make their calls less unexpected.
Thirdly, professionalism. The agents of a good firm know how to present themselves properly and go beyond that. Not only are they charged to only speak respectfully, they are also called to minimize background noise and have only great respect for each person they are calling. If a contact says no, they cease. Scammers (or at least bad agents) on the other hand are still deluded in their belief that the pushy sales person attitude still sells. Most professional telemarketing blogs will also tell you that the script is not something to be memorized but taken to heart.
Those are just three of the common qualifications you can use to screen the firms your selecting for outsourced telemarketing. Any company that invests in meeting these standards can hardly do so on the cheap, skimpy budget of criminal schemers. It’s also their way of saving you the trouble of investing in an in-house team too.
Do also take note though that every telemarketer has an industry specialty and you should go for one that matches yours. The specialization affects a lot of the things that make them effective (mainly their database and the experience of their agents). Start your search now with these qualifications so you can rest easy with your outsourcing.
The pushy salesmen attitude is not as admired in the telemarketing industry as some people might think. With all the negative perceptions about the practice, do you really think veterans in the field would persist in such a counterproductive attitude? They’re not stupid you know. How else would they have managed to survive without doing away with what doesn’t work?
Contrary to what the public believes, experienced telemarketing companies do tell their agents to take no for an answer. Now you might think that this is somehow a sacrifice on their part and you could go as far and say that said sacrifice includes their effectiveness.
You might be right but that’s only until you reach that bit on their effectiveness. The truth is they have exploited other factors to keep their services effective and relevant to the current business scene.
Surprisingly, the first factor lies in the difference between B2C and B2B businesses. What most people usually think of when they imagine the annoying and pushy sort of telemarketer is in fact, the B2C variety. And how can it be classified otherwise? Does the average stay-at-home mom look like somebody eagerly awaiting a call from an ERP software firm? Of course not, but on the other hand, if we’re talking about your typical business executive, who usually takes dozens of business-related calls a day, then it easily becomes less unlikely. Thus, you will see why telemarketers are now establishing themselves as a popular means of B2B lead generation.
The second factor is the minimization of cold-calling. Again, one of the things that brought about the negative perceptions on telemarketing is the unexpected nature of telemarketing calls. Good telemarketing firms know how risky it is to engage in that kind of random calling so they do all they can to gather information beforehand to strictly limit the businesses they are pursuing. From working closely together with their client company to compiling a large and wide-covering business database, information has become the latest thing they’ve come to rely on in addition to classical qualities such as communication skills and the best equipment.
Speaking of which, the third factor is the business database itself. These companies try to do everything to get the best out of their long years in the business. Their databases are filled with contacts both old and new. The follow-up techniques they exercise ensure that it remains large and also up-to-date. In addition to that, they have expert data analysts who can help break down that vast information and present only the most qualified leads to their clients.
This makes accepting a rejection a lot less of a loss for the agents. Because this usually results in them having to pursue a long list of businesses to qualify, they don’t have to worry too much about one person saying no. And with the accuracy of their data, the end result would still most likely have a majority of the list becoming qualified leads. Again, this makes an easier job out of taking no for an answer.
So the next time you feel hesitant towards outsourced telemarketing, why not contact a telemarketer yourself? You’ll find that the pushy salesmen aren’t there anymore.
If you’re trying to use telemarketing for your lead generation campaign, you’ll immediately find yourself beset with discouragement, complaints, and even threats. Then again, who can blame such opposition? Nobody likes to pick up a ringing telephone only to hear a total stranger on the other end, trying to make a fast buck out of them.
However, please note that for the more experienced and veteran telemarketers, such a method is hardly the whole package of what they do. In fact, this particular method even has its own name to distinguish it from the rest of the telemarketing process: cold calling.
The ‘cold’ part is in reference to the receiver not expecting the call. In other words, it’s the element of randomness that has sparked all the hatred towards telemarketing in the first place.
It is for this reason that lead generation companies who use telemarketing are always doing what they can to minimize this tactic. You can also consider this as their form of first advice to young companies who are just about to take their first shot at telemarketing themselves. Such companies would do well to gravely heed this counsel. It’s a bit of an unavoidable reality that those starting out will have no choice but call unsuspecting people. How it’s unavoidable will be explained later.
Now as stated before, the random aspect of it is what sparks the ire of telemarketing opponents. Therefore, they explore the factors which help minimize this randomness mainly: information, script, and timing.
Information is the critical first step in knowing who to call and how to answer any negative or even just suspicious responses. Veteran telemarketing firms always boast a large database that they constantly update. This just not only ensures the ease of follow-up calls and freshness of qualified leads. It also helps them determine the most likely businesses to target for their client. In addition to that, information covers more than just knowledge of who to call. It also includes the knowledge they have in a particular industry (both in terms of who they’re representing and who they’re trying to sell to). This would explain why telemarketing is mostly used in getting B2B leads as business executives are stricter yet also more open to do big business than average consumers (provided that the telemarketer is aware of certain sales problems the executive’s company needs help with). Another thing to keep in mind is the industry expertise can help you determine the right firm if you ever decide to outsource to more experienced telemarketers.
Script hardly refers to the set of words rehearsed and mindlessly memorized by telephone salespeople. In fact, that is actually discouraged, heavily even, by those who have long been in the business. A good script is something that is less to be memorized and more to be internalized. It comprises of the right questions to ask and the right answers to give so that the receiver won’t be surprised too long. A good sign of an effective script is that it makes a client aware that the call was drawn by observed problems from their side. Again, the information from before plays a key role.
Lastly, knowing when to call a prospect helps put both the script and the information to good use. It would be an insult to the development of both if your telemarketer doesn’t use them to determine the right time to call.
Those are the main factors which help professionals diminish the hated randomness of their calls should they ever find themselves in need of starting a lead list. If you don’t feel confident that your own in-house team has their resources, perhaps it’s best to outsource to them and see for yourself how these factors are put to the best use.