By Ian Carr.
Two of the biggest challenges faced by B2B companies today include: identifying new opportunities and secondly getting in front of senior decision makers and influencers.
There is no silver bullet to addressing this problem apart from deploying an effective closed-loop process that blends the effective use of market segmentation, targeting, positioning, messaging, communication, engagement and follow-up mechanisms.
One of the tactics often adopted by many service providers has been to procure services from telemarketing agencies which in general has resulted in mixed levels of success.
Our experience shows that to be successful and maximise your ROI, providers need to adopt a strategic and holistic approach to opportunity identification and senior executive engagement. Part of this approach includes deploying the right individual(s) to make direct appointments. This can be highly effective, however many organisations have been burnt by implementing ill-thought-through tactical, telemarketing engagements which when implemented incorrectly have proved to be costly, ineffective and damaging to brand reputation.
The following hints and tips are designed to help you optimise your engagement strategy. They are based on our 25 years of experience communicating high value solutions and securing senior executive appointments for outsourcing providers:
10 Steps to Success
- Set clear objectives.
- Identify your target audience.
- Articulate your value proposition and outline why you are unique from others.
- Develop an integrated campaign using multiple communication vehicles where possible.
- Select an experienced person to do direct sales/appointment calls. This person should have a demonstrable track record in securing senior executive appointments (remember they are an extension of your brand).
- Ensure the campaign is integrated between sales, marketing and delivery.
- Implement appropriate tracking and reporting mechanisms so you can demonstrate ROI.
- Ensure leads handed over to sales people get followed up and nurtured.
- Don’t let sales guys drop a warm relationship just because there is no immediate piece of business. If that sales person has no time, hand over the relationship nurturing to another person if needed in order to maximise your return on engagement.
- Communicate your successes to senior management.
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