Telemarketing for UK manufacturers pays dividends
Found this article using Bing on The Manufacturer.com website – a little old but well worth the read
Intelligent sales approach lights up manufacturer’s sales company news from Broadley Speaking
06 October 2009
Without doubt the journey of a product from the factory floor into the hands of a buyer, let alone a consumer, is a long and sometimes perilous tale. UK manufacturers all face their own version of ‘Goliath’ on a daily basis, be it the recession, the competition or sometimes, the customers or lack thereof. If you have ever wished for more customers, or to break into a new market then a new breed of B2B telemarketing may just be the answer you are looking for.
Will it work for me?
For a company like Somar International it was difficult for them to see how unique technical products could be sold over the phone. Somar make and sell the Eluma intelligent lighting system, which can reduce energy costs by up to 80%, which means it pays for itself, within one or two years. They were looking at different approaches that would enable them to increase their share of the UK market.
David Bone, Director of Somar International states “What we realised is that rather than being a purely technical sell, we could concentrate on selling the ongoing cost savings, which is really the true benefit of this product. This meant that we were more willing to look at different ways of reaching out and developing new clients.”
It ain’t what you do it’s the way that you do it!
A lot of current business development advice concentrates on improving communication with your current clients and making sure you are keeping them happy. The practicalities of this, however, can be quite time-consuming and expensive. Do you send them a letter, another piece of direct mail, an email, perhaps invite them to read your blog? What is clear is that even though you hope a client will respond to your marketing activity, they mostly don’t. Short term commission structures can also mean that your sales team doesn’t concentrate on long term business development. Your lead generation activity can be left to what response you get from your mail/email campaigns and a few lucky breaks. Due to the enormity of some investments the manufacturing sales cycle can take months, even years to complete, so how do you start a real dialogue with your clients as soon as possible?
Building a sales pipeline, call by call
Telemarketing has a poor reputation as scripted, low level, verbal ‘direct mail’. Since 1997, Broadley Speaking has pioneered a different breed of telemarketing, designed specifically to sell relatively high value, complex products to senior people; like those in the manufacturing sector.
David Conn, Director of Broadly Speaking said “A lot of our clients literally can’t believe the difference this type of telemarketing can make. You will never build a business relationship with a customer with just an email or a good looking website. At some point you have to talk to them and find out what makes them tick.”
What do your clients really think?
As a support to sales and marketing, unscripted telemarketing builds an immediate relationship between the client and the product, gathering real needs and opinions and qualified knowledge of client budgets or preferred suppliers. Using this information we can quickly create a long term sales pipeline composed of important contacts with real project timelines and budgets, instead of the hand to mouth existence of concentrating on the clients whose purchase is on the immediate horizon. The success rate is, on average, much better than a direct mail campaign and there are no limits to the opportunities you can create and win.
“We were surprised at how effective a telemarketing campaign could be. We now work with Manchester Airport, Sainsbury’s and Go- Ahead Transport Group, all of these relationships were instigated by a telemarketing phone call. We can point to sales measured in millions of pounds, directly attributable to Broadley Speaking’s work.” said Mr Bone.
Mr Conn concludes “Companies seem to have recognised that during the recession they have had to work harder to make sales. Somar have been shrewd enough to invest in their sales pipeline and are reaping the dividends. With some senior economists now pointing to an up turn in fortunes investing in sales at this time can bring significant advantage. We can build programmes for companies of all sizes and help them create business opportunities just like we have for Somar International and their Eluma lighting system.”