Does Telemarketing Still Work?
Beyond that, the whole concept of "permission marketing" will begin to permeate the entire telemarketing channel, as more companies discover it as a way toward greater profitability.
IDM: Does more emphasis need to be placed on the hiring and training of call center representatives?
Hamilton: That has been the case for the last 10 or more years. Poor telephone sales representative quality and training, combined with a dependence on verbatim scripts, has been one of the primary drivers of consumers' negativity toward telemarketing. The other driver, of course, is sheer volume.
IDM: What changes in the hiring of telephone sales representatives need to take place?
Hamilton: In years past, companies used to test to find the best person for the job, but some of that has
disappeared in the need to fill 100 chairs by next week. Some large telemarketing companies do four hours of testing before they even put candidates in training classand these companies have been the most successful in telemarketing.
IDM: What role will training play in permission telemarketing?
Hamilton: Companies that want to succeed have to get away from the idea that they can call everyone in the U.S., read a script and get a percentage to [make a purchase]. Instead, you have to decide who is right for this offer, what's the right price, the right message and then target to that audience. Look at the people who have bought the product, and compare them to your listsbasic direct marketing. Had we been doing this all along, we might not be in this situation.
We got away from targeting because what used to be a marketing process became a commodity; the price of a call dropped, and telemarketing suddenly became a volume business. As soon as you say you'll call [the names in your database] as many times as you please, you cross the line of abusing your customer base. You have to try