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Telemarketing Tips 50 Do’s and 50 Dont’s

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Telemarketing is still an important route to market for many SME’s and even large corporations. It makes sense, therefore, to ensure you follow the best telemarketing tips and advice to make the most out of your calling. Below are our Top 50 Do’s and Don’ts of Successful Telemarketing. Use them to evaluate how you measure up. If you feel that you need some more input, take a look at our Telemarketing Training and check out our series of 10 Telemarketing Tips short 2-minute videos.

Infographic: 50 Telemarketing Behaviours to Power Lead Generation.

50 Telemarketing Do’s

    1. Ask for what you want — an appointment, a demo, a sale – Don’t be shy. It’s the reason you are calling.
    2. Ask great questions — Open ones to encourage the listener to talk and find info. Closed ones to qualify and filter
    3. Be confident – It radiates to your prospects. Expect to succeed and you will
    4. To be honest — it really is the best approach. You WILL get found out if you lie.
    5. Be motivated  —  People buy people. If you’re not positive about what you offer, why should your prospects be interested?
    6. Be patient – Telemarketing can take time and perseverance
    7. Be prepared to make your calls at times to reach your decision-makers e.g.  before 9 am and after 5 pm if necessary
    8. Build rapport  —  Use frames of reference, name drop, mirror their language, and use their name (but not too often)
    9. Call out of normal hours and lunchtime – the gatekeeper won’t be there to protect your Decision Maker
    10. Change your pitch if it isn’t working. Plan a call structure that is like a good story. An attention-grabbing start, a compelling middle, and a great ending!
    11. Secure a good call list. Make sure it is clean before calling. A good list is the best asset to your success
    12. Ensure your phone line is clear – No gremlins in terms of interference
    13. Find a ‘Trojan Horse’ — To get under their radar so that they will engage with you especially if they have already a current supplier of your services
    14. Follow up – Make your follow up calls on time and keep doing so until you know where you stand
    15. Get agreement from your prospect to call them back at a later date. Even if they aren’t interested now, things can change
    16. Have a pen and paper at the ready at all times. Takedown concise and good notes including language, style, and key info
    17. Have your diary open and ready to give available dates
    18. Keep control of calls with the gatekeeper. Sound authoritative and you have a better chance of getting through. Keep what you say short. KISS!
    19. If you feel you must leave voicemail messages, make sure they are enticing and compelling with a good call to action
    20. Listen carefully — You have two ears and one mouth
    21. Sound professional on the phone with a good speaking voice, pace, and tone. Match your prospects if you can
    22. Make sure you are calling for the right decision-maker contact. Ask the question
    23. Make sure you have a relevant email to send should the prospect ask for more information
    24. Make sure your data is as fresh as possible
    25. Make you are able to talk ‘off script’ to really engage the prospect
    26. Make sure you are passionate about your product or service
    27. Make sure you fully brief your agency if you are outsourcing calls
    28. Make the calls — Don’t delay. Just get on the phone. Inertia is your worst enemy
    29. Prepare likely objection handling questions and techniques. You know the objections. Plan for them
    30. Plan your calls — Know your products, market, competitors, pitch, and the issues your company resolves or the opportunities your company creates
    31. Read between the lines of what the prospect says. Clarify if you’re unsure.
    32. Role-play or record your calls to see what could have been done better. Listen back to improve your techniques
    33. Send timely info when requested including appointment confirmations
    34. Set realistic objectives — based on your market, experience, and proposition
    35. Set realistic targets – how many calls per hour?  How many appointments do you want to make? Over what timeframe?
    36. Smile — It transmits to your voice
    37. Sound authoritative. You need to sound at least as important as the person you are speaking to. It’s peer to peer and you won’t get past the gatekeeper if you don’t.
    38. Summarize the conversation with the prospect to ensure that you have listened and understood their ‘pains’ before you go ahead and pitch/recommend your product or service
    39. Take good notes — Include info on verbatim comments, language, tone, pace, and personality
    40. Try to fool an IVR by dialing 0 to get to the switchboard. Or call accounts and try to be put through that way
    41. Use a good CRM system — so you can quickly search and find follow up calls
    42. Assume you are going to get what you want and ask for it with that assumption in mind
    43. Use evocative and compelling words like huge, massive, significant, dramatic, and so on — It adds impact but don’t go wild!
    44. Use the ‘feel, felt, found’ technique to combat objections along with good open questions
    45. Use frames of reference — Past work, client reference points, and industry examples
    46. Treat people how THEY would like to be treated. Consider their motivations and needs and treat them accordingly.
    47. Use natural engaging language — sound natural. Use simple English. It helps rapport
    48. Use technology to speed things up eg click to dial CRM and Skype number recognition enables 1-click dialing
    49. Use telemarketing to follow up other marketing activity eg emails or visitors to your stand
    50. Have a glass of freshwater available for those ‘parched’ moments. Watch out for how caffeine affects you.

50 Telemarketing Dont’s

    1. Apologize for calling. You’re not sorry and your prospect knows you aren’t
    2. Be afraid to ask for the sale.
    3. Be afraid to challenge the prospects’ objections through good questions
    4. Be afraid to change your approach and message if it isn’t working
    5. Be rude or dismissive of your prospects replies to your questions
    6. Eat when making calls. Chomping and chewing while calling is bad
    7. Forget to keep it legal. Make sure your screen against the CTPS opt-out register before you dial
    8. Get distracted by ANYTHING else whilst on a call i.e. text messages, emails, colleagues, Facebook! Do however NEVER ignore a fire alarm!
    9. Guess! If you do not know the answer to a question a prospect poses then be honest and promise to find out and call them back.
    10. Have your mobile on when making calls, you will be tempted to look to see who is calling and this will tell the prospect your attention is not 100% on them
    11. Interrupt the prospect when they are talking. It is an indication you are not listening
    12. Keep your telemarketing team in the dark, make sure they are prepared with responses to typical objections and reasons why the prospect should see you NOW
    13. Lie – You will get found out and it damages the credibility of your brand
    14. Forget to ask if the product/service is relevant to any other individuals/departments in the company you are calling.  Even if it’s not of interest to the person you are speaking to, there may be a need elsewhere.
    15. Make assumptions based on what you think you already know.
    16. Make friends with the gatekeeper too early — Their job is to block you. The more info you give, the more they can ask questions
    17. Overcomplicate the calls. Use the KISS technique!
    18. Over script the calls and sound stilted
    19. Overuse the prospect’s name. You DO NOT need to get it into every sentence — it sounds like a hard sell tacky sales call.
    20. Patronize your gatekeeper or prospect.
    21. Pitch something you don’t really understand. — You will get found out
    22. Prejudge any call. You never know what their issues are in the background that may prove an opportunity
    23. Promise anything that you cannot deliver be it about the product or simply timescales for calling someone back.
    24. Rush your call — Slow down and take your time. You will sound more confident
    25. Say ‘How are you today’ — It’s a tell-tale sign of a sales call
    26. Set yourself up to fail. Give yourself realistic targets that you can meet and exceed
    27. Sit back and wait for calls to come to you – be proactive and make the calls. It is a numbers game in many respects.
    28. Slam the phone down — It damages your brand
    29. Smoke! You may think no one can tell but they can. Smokers will know what you are doing and non-smokers will think you are a heavy breather!
    30. Sound bored and uninterested. If you are, your prospect will be
    31. Speak too quickly — You sound less authoritative
    32. Stalk someone you are struggling to get hold of. The gatekeeper will remember and this will gain your company a bad reputation for nuisance calls. You are also more likely to be blocked.
    33. Swear. Profanity will get you on a fast track to a dial tone in your ear
    34. Type while you are listening or talking — They can hear you
    35. Um and er. Know what you are going to say and relax
    36. Use industry jargon or buzz words that you don’t understand. The prospect will assume you are more of an expert than you are and answer you in jargon expecting you to know exactly what they mean.
    37. Use patronizing / slang names:- love, pet, darling, sweetie ………..yuck, yuck, yuck, and not professional.
    38. Use unnecessary humor or jokes – get to the point.
    39. Waffle! Be concise and don’t go on and on
    40. Wait for ages on hold — hang up and try another time. Don’t waste precious calling time
    41. Worry about failure — Before the call, you had no appointment. If they say no, you still don’t have an appointment. Nothing has changed.
    42. Talk over your prospect – it shows you aren’t listening
    43. Spend ages researching a company before calling, if they are not there, it’s a waste of valuable calling time.
    44. Be afraid to go on a course to improve your telephone and marketing skills
    45. Have a lot of background noise when you are calling.  It will sound like you are in a call center which is not always desirable
    46. Argue with your decision-maker if they are not interested.  Keep your integrity high
    47. Underestimate the power of ‘mirroring’ language or using NLP techniques to really build rapport
    48. Call unprepared for objections and how you will handle them
    49. Forget to follow up when you said you would.
    50. Bully your prospect into meeting you

There are lots more telemarketing tips on our Knowledge Bank Page.

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