If a lead generation cycle were a movie, then the appointment setting part would be the climax. It’s the deciding factor on whether an interaction with a prospect will move forward or come to a halt. Because of this importance, telemarketers need to make sure they can grab this opportunity while it’s on the table.
Gathering preliminary details
- A defined target list with job titles, industries, and verticals
- From the contact’s perspective, what’s the benefit of agreeing to an appointment?
- Expectations from the sales team
- Full understanding of products and services
Gaining buy-in from sales:
Communication before, during, and after the campaign is critical for a successful campaign. Before campaign launch: Outline the appointment setting process, set expectations, and gain a clear understanding of the desires and expectations of the sales team.
Adjustments can be made prior to launch based on feedback from sales team. Communication during TM appointment setting will allow for minor adjustments or modifications throughout the campaign.
Other Factors to consider:
- Size of sales team: The strategy will vary depending on the number of sales representatives that appointments are being set for. More customization is possible for smaller teams compared to larger numbers of sales representatives where establishing standards is critical.
- Mobility/geographical considerations: Mobility of the sales team, as well as the geography they cover should factor in to understanding which appointments are best suited for the team involved.
- Scheduling appointments: The type of appointment and geography of the accounts the field reps are responsible for are important to consider as you set guidelines for the time frame between initial conversation and potential appointment dates.
- Appointment Duration: This will vary depending on the goal of the appointment, but a typical phone appointment should be set for a minimum of 15-30 minutes and a face to face would customarily take between 30 minutes to an hour.
- Built-in flexibility: While setting appointments, it is important to detect 2-3 potential options, preferably on distinct dates and varying times of the day.
- Next Steps: Delineating expectations once the appointment has been set including the hand-off process and the party responsible for sending the meeting invite and/or rescheduling. This framework should be in place prior to outbound telemarketing, as the contact needs to have a clear understanding of next steps once the appointment is set.