We’ve talked before about why telemarketing sucks (and why it actually doesn’t), but can cold outreach, cold calls, and telemarketing ever actually be good?

Spoiler alert: the answer is yes, if you do it well and do it right.

If you’ve experienced crappy cold calls, it’s not surprising you might be a little sceptical at this point. After all, we’ve all got annoyed with spam calls trying to sell us something. But let’s take a step back – it’s not the channel itself that’s the issue. It’s the way it’s used.

If you’re using telemarketing the right way, it absolutely can be good – not just for you, but also for the people receiving the calls. Don’t believe us? Read on and we’ll try to change your mind…

It has to be relevant

A scattergun approach is one of the reasons telemarketing gets a bad reputation. Calling hundreds of people to pitch your product or service, without do any research or preparation, is just going to lead to a lot of frustration – on the part of the callers and the people being called.

You need to know that what you’re offering is relevant to the people you’re talking to, so that you can actually share something of use to them. So, start with the research and find out who you should be speaking to – who has a genuine need for what you do. And think about what matters to them, so that you can be completely relevant on your calls.

It has to be compliant

GDPR is a legal requirement, so if you want your outreach to fall into the “good” category, then you’re going to need to abide by those regulations. And not ‘sort of’ or ‘by the letter but not the spirit’.

Under the regulations, you can make outreach calls on the basis of “legitimate interest” but you still have to protect the rights of the individual you’re contacting and cause no distress to them. Therefore, in order to be able to genuinely rely on legitimate interest, you have to do that research we were just talking about. A business that doesn’t have an office will not have a legitimate interest for a service that reduces office utility bills, for example. Know your audience.

It has to have the right data

Ok, so we’ve mentioned this a couple of times already, but data is the big one – it’s why our K8 service focuses on making sure you have a compliant and robust database of people to contact.

If you want to get good calls, that leave you with a qualified lead and your contacts to feel like you’re offering them a good experience, you need that data to be up to date, focused on the right people, and compliant.

It has to have the right message

Messaging is a fundamental part of creating a good cold call. If your script is all about you, what you do, what you want, and how you’d like to move forward, sorry but you’re in the bad place.

For a call to be good, it needs to be all about the person you’re calling. What are their issues? What do they need? What would make their life or business better? When you talk to them about them, you gather useful data, but you also give them a better experience. Think about how you can help them, not what you want out of the interaction. Sure, you want something – you wouldn’t be doing this if you didn’t – but a good call is about them.

Ask them questions, get to know their needs, be able to share how you can help them without making it all about you. A two-way conversation is always better than a pitch.

It has to be honest

Everyone prefers honesty over a pitch, or a shady tactic. And if you want to be on the good side of cold calling, honesty is a must. Don’t start a call with overly friendly banter or cheesy ice breakers. Authenticity is the best way to go. You should have done your research and got some great messaging for your introduction, so go with that and be yourself.

It should go without saying that you can’t lie to people to get them to engage with you – but unfortunately many people have ignored this. So, let’s be clear – you can’t lie to people. If you want to do telemarketing honestly, with integrity, and without burning a lot of bridges, honesty is the only way.

It has to be respectful

There’s no point following the above guidelines if you’re going to pressure the people you’re speaking to, or if you’re not willing to take no for an answer. The whole point is to add value, and if the person on the other end of the line either doesn’t or can’t see the value, then accept the no and move on.

Don’t try to persuade them that they’re wrong, don’t try to add in some less-than-savoury tactics to get the yes. Leave them with a good impression of your business – as people who’re trying to help.

If someone asks to be removed from your database, respect that (you have to, legally, but do so with grace). If they say they’re not interested right now, ask when would be a good time to reach back out – and if they say in 6 months, use your CRM to schedule that and don’t try bugging them in a few weeks.

Want to always make sure your cold calling is on the side of good? Give us a whistle.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.