The importance of follow-up calls in B2B direct marketing

Did you read the last 2 blog articleds on direct marketing written by Nathalie Pilon, our Vice-President of Strategy? “Does direct marketing still work in 2014? “ and “B2B Direct Marketing: Measure and follow up with the sales team “, they will give you an excellent starting point on the subject.
Let’s discuss the role of sales in all of this and discuss the importance of follow-up calls … not cold calls.

This is not a ‘cold call’

Let’s take a random example, my own. As Vice President of Business Development, my role is to keep track of direct marketing initiatives, both online and offline.

Like most representatives, I do not like cold calls and I know that this type of exploration is the least effective. It takes a very high call volume to succeed and a resilient personality to wipe away any refusals.

A follow-up call, after sending a targeted communication with of a suitable offer, is a much better way to proceed.

The offer

It is the focus of your communication. The offer is not only economic in nature (a discount on a product or service), it can also be high value information such as a case study or free consultation.

As mentioned in Nathalie’s article, the incentive must be appropriate and relevant to the recipient. The access to a case study or infographics of one of our studies through a form would demonstrate of the level of interest in the offer and a trigger for a follow-up call.

The follow-up call; it’s all in the approach

You may send a generic email response following a download, of course, but a call has more impact, provided it is done within a few hours. After all, if there was a download, it’s because there was someone at the other end doing it …

One tip, when you do call, be professional and act with discretion. Some people might find your call intrusive and perceive your approach negatively. Be courteous and use your best customer service skills. Nobody wants to be sold something, but most do want to enjoy a good customer experience.

Objectively, direct marketing is an opportunity to initiate contact in a way where the spokesperson is open to your approach and your offer. It is important to approach the prospect with respect and professionalism, with the aim of initiating a relationship, not to sell anything, at first.

You know more than you think about your prospect

In the context of direct marketing, you do not make the cold calls, you make follow-up calls on identified targets after sending chosen communication.

To follow your own, you have the luxury in most cases, to have data on the targeted companies, namely their field of activity, contact names, titles, their turnover, their website and what they offer in general.

So before you pick up the phone, take a step back. Prepare yourself, smile and have a structured and intelligent conversation.

Enjoy your follow up!

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