sales leads are usually the cautious type. They don't want to use overly direct means for fear of being labeled disruptive, intrusive, and just plain pushy. Many inbound marketing advocates feel the same way (which is why they're ready to back up this attitude with very convincing statistics, research, as well as personal experience).
However, it can still logically follow that inbound sales leads still need to be qualified. Attracting them purely through their interactions with your website or even on your social media page will not be good enough reason to appoint them to a sales representative right away. Here are two reasons why:
- People still doubt online information – Not all business owners are quick to believe what's on the internet. In fact, some business owners can be quite critical of what businesses promise online. If they can't find anything else to verify what's being said on your website, then they won't move any further in the sales process.
- Online information from clients can also be unreliable – The information you receive via website contact forms or sent through social media isn't always what it appears. Anybody can write a message on the internet, send it, and claim it so long as they have access to the account. Why do you think many businesses (perhaps even your own) are being extra careful with whom they share online contact information? You might need more than a name, an email address, and a few words expressing interest before you can fully qualify a prospect.
There's a reason why the qualification process is one of the longest phases in lead generation. It's the stage where you engage a prospect even further, identify their needs, as well as verify the shared information for both sides. And despite what critics say, telemarketing is still one of the most commonly used forms of verification. You can replicate a typed message but you can't replicate a live person's voice nor the discussion you can have with that person. Below are just some of the ways that inbound marketing channels can use B2B telemarketing to qualify their sales leads:
- Email – Inbound leads generated via email come from positive responses to a well-aimed email blast. But again, these responses could be made by anyone. Using a phone call to follow-up assures you that you are indeed communicating with the sender.
- Social media – Chatting on social media after an extended period might seem like an alternative to talking over the phone. However, remember that one of the biggest criticisms against social media is that it still allows a considerable level of anonymity. You do not want that anonymity being a cause for doubt among either your salespeople or your prospects. Direct the latter to give your business a call and don't neglect the things being discussed through social media to show that they're still talking to the same company.
- Website – Put a CTA in your website that encourage interested prospects to call. This helps convince your salespeople that the prospects are real and at the same time, lets skeptical prospects know that you're real as well. However, that's just the ideal. There are factors that still leave much room for skilled and honest communication so don't forget those!
Sometimes you'll find that it's not even enough to combine telemarketing with just one of those channels. Multi-channel marketing approaches are seeing increasing favor because more businesses (even small ones) are asking more transparency and information just to be convinced. Qualify your inbound sales leads with telemarketing today!