How NOT to do Telemarketing



This week I made the rather monumental step of moving into new offices, having started and run the business from a home office for the last two years.   The positives are currently far outweighing the negatives but, one of those negatives I’d perhaps not allowed for, as a moved business is the amount of Telemarketing calls I’m receiving, mainly from utilities companies.

Now, as someone that spends the vast majority of their working life on the phone I’ve no objection to people calling me but it has become apparent how bad the standard of calls from the average telemarketer is and, how, despite the fact that I tend to take much of our approach and success for granted, we’re actually pretty blummin good at this.

I’ve written before about some of the pointers for delivering Telemarketing or sales calls successfully so now, after 4 days of receiving some appalling calls would like to share how to do it badly:

1 – Don’t bother doing any research – pretty much every call I’ve had this week has been from companies offering utilities services – namely gas and electricity.  A little bit of research would have shown that the building I’m in is a serviced office.  20 seconds on google could have given you this information and saved both you and I some valuable time.   This also applies to ensuring you’re talking to the right person in the right position and, if you don’t know, treat the call as an enquiry/information gathering exercise

2 – Ask the prospect how they are – I’m busy, I’ve just had my day interrupted by a sales call, if you truly want an answer to the question “how are you today” the answer is most likely to be “rather annoyed, I’m busy and you’ve just called me up trying to sell me something I don’t want/need”.  Gone is the time when this works.  This leads us very nicely onto point 3

3 – Don’t get to the point – the second you called, the overriding thought in my head is “what does this person want” so, by asking how I am, umming and arring, seeming unwilling to actually tell me what the benefit is to me of continuing the conversation, again you’re wasting yours and my time.  Get to the point, tell me what the benefit is of that point and if it’s useful to me, we’ll carry on talking, if not, you can call someone else who might be interested

4 – Tell me how amazing you are – if you’re really determined on carrying out sales/marketing calls badly, way before you’ve established my need or whether I’ll potentially be interested, rattle through as many benefits of your product/service as soon as you can in the conversation in the hope that one of them will hit the spot and result in a sale.    You don’t know who I am, what I do or what my pain points are so why do I want to hear everything about your offering?  Answer – I don’t!

5 – Really obviously read from a script.   I appreciate that many large call centre operations will have automated systems to help them maximise the impact of their offering whilst reducing the need for training/development but if it doesn’t sound as if you know what you’re talking about, why on earth am I going to buy from you.  I know this is probably the 50th call you’ve made today and that you’ve had to say the same thing to the previous 49 people but, for heavens sake, put some personality into it.  Learn your script to the point where it sounds natural, mix it up a bit, tailor your introduction but, above all, sound like someone I’d like to talk to

Other than that, I’m happy for you to call me, just be good at it!



Dan Smith 
Inspired Business Development
Unit K9 Cradley Enterprise Centre
Maypole Fields
B63 2QB
T:01384 566 078


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