In this candid interview, Jeffrey Seders, an insurance broker based in California, relates why he has partnered with Professional Prospecting Systems for 6 years to help grow his insurance business!
Q: How long have you been working with Professional Prospecting Systems?
More and more B2B companies are outsourcing the job of setting appointments. Instead of having their sales reps make cold calls and fill their own schedule, they outsource to a B2B Appointment Setting specialist firm.
You may have heard the axiom that “content is king.” If you have, you most likely heard it in the context of building an audience for a web site or to get attendees for an event. Most business people would not think about the importance of content in the context of getting on the phone to generate appointments and sales leads.
Content is important for outbound marketing activities and if you plan to invest in outbound marketing, you better have some good content.
I wrote a blog post a couple of months ago about Face to Face Appointments vs. Phone Appointments and made the case that you are better off going for a Phone Appointment first.
We knew this from the experience of doing over 1,500 projects in the past 13 years. Recently I came across some third party validation so you do not have to take our word for it.
Winning at the top of the sales funnel means coordinating people, systems and content to get your story into the minds of your prospect audience so they are persuaded to have a conversation with you (an appointment.)
In the majority of cases, about 90% of the time, when a b2b company hires Professional Prospecting Systems, they are looking for more b2b appointments or qualified leads.
Over the past 14 years we have developed a systematic approach to setting up and running a b2b appointment setting and lead generation program that incorporates 3 Elements :
If you are not familiar with “Lead Nurturing” it is the business process of setting up a system to maintain contact with potential customers with information offers to educate prospects about your product or service. This is a very basic definition.
In a sense, Lead Nurturing is not new. If you were a sales rep in decades past, you may have had a sales manager that insisted that you setup a “tickler file” and stay in contact with your sales prospects over time.
I get hundreds of calls every year from salespeople trying to book an appointment with me. You have probably been one of them.
It may surprise you to learn this, but some salespeople do actually succeed in booking an appointment with me.
Here is the picture that comes into my head when I receive a call from a salesperson trying to book an appointment with me. I see myself sitting at my desk going through the obligatory ‘rapport building. Then I see myself suffering through a sales pitch that goes on a lot longer than it is supposed to. Then I know I will have to fend off The Close and pry the sales rep out of the chair and push them out the door.
Previously I told you that if you want to get an appointment with me you have to tell me what you are going to do for me without telling me how you are going to do it. And then you tell me you only need 5 minutes of my time for the appointment so I feel the process is going to be relatively painless.
Failing to Consistently Communicate With Your Prospects is The Most Costly Marketing Mistake
Most traditional marketing methods are not very effective. Let’s take traditional telemarketing as an example. You call your prospect list. You are lucky if you reach even 15% of the decision makers and you book an appointment with a small percentage of that group. And there you are on one side of that gaping marketing chasm with your little group of prospects. On the other side of the chasm are the majority of your prospects that you have not even started to communicate with. If you don’t communicate with them, they are going to remain on the other side of that chasm forever and you will never do any business with them.
Are you Giving Up On Your Prospects Too Soon?
One of the biggest mistakes we make in our marketing, in fact probably The biggest mistake, is to abandon our prospects too early in the marketing process. We get frustrated and give up on them. Then we move on to another group of prospects until we get frustrated with them. Meanwhile the group of prospects we abandoned is left hanging just when we were getting them warmed up to us.
Continue To Reach Out to Your Prospects on A Consistent Basis and They Will Cross Over the Bridge
E-Telemarketing is a dramatically different approach to marketing because it combines lead nurturing emails with telemarketing to build on successive contacts with your prospects. It is not a one call and out strategy which just does not work any more.
You communicate your message to your prospects consistently by email and then when you have identified which prospects have warmed up to you based on the number of times they have opened your emails, you call them. It stands to reason that you will have a lot more success calling prospects who have put up their hand and indicated their interest.
1. It is not so much what you say, but how you say it.
2. The shorter the script, the more likely it is to result in an appointment.
In testing on some of our major campaigns over the years, the results clearly show that less is more. The script, particularly the opening statement, must be very short and get right to the point in order for a script to work successfully. Trying to convey too much detail in a script is a sure fire way to kill an appointment setting campaign. The tendency is to think that the more information we throw at the prospect, the more likely they are to find something that interests them enough to want an appointment. In fact, it works exactly the opposite—the more details you give the prospect, the less need they have for the appointment to get the details.
3. Sell the sizzle.
This point relates directly to the previous one. Make sure your script sells the benefits and the end result of using your product or service. Leave the details of how you do it for the appointment. If they ask how or why, tell them you will show them in your demonstration or meeting.