Telemarketing: An Overview

Despite all the gadgets available to today’s entrepreneur, many retailers still count on telemarketing – the process of selling or promoting a product or service via telephone – as a permanent fixture in their overall strategies.

Besides a strong record against other marketing media, the method's adaptability allows real-time adjustments, which makes last-minute revisions in sales presentations easy to implement. A single phone call can boost revenue simply by changing product offerings or switching target audiences.

Telemarketing also provides:

  • High returns on the marketing-dollar investment
  • Instant customer interaction
  • Opportunity to add new information to customer data bases
  • Opportunity to cross- and up-sell
  • Flexible marketing territory
  • Adjustable calling hours

Outbound telemarketing is an invaluable asset in data collection, as well as appointment setting, lead generation, surveys, market research, list cleaning, database updates, client reactivations and, of course, phone sales.

Inbound telemarketing applications are excellent for order taking, customer service and responses to virtually any form of advertisement.

Once you have a telemarketing operation set up, adapting it to a wide range of functions isn’t a problem. These include:

  • Cold calling
  • Market research
  • New product introduction
  • Product change news
  • Product recall
  • Customer notification of seasonal product changes
  • Special deals and discount offers
  • Sales territory expansion
  • Customer service improvements

Telemarketing services represent a considerable investment in time and money. Before launching a telemarketing campaign from scratch, it's smart to decide whether to set up a call center in-house or to outsource the process to a third party. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and the answer depends on your situation.