What do prospects like and dislike? The Telemarketers Guide

What do prospects like and dislike- A Telemarketer’s Guide

As a telemarketer, it is important to understand every person you come in contact with everyday. Salesperson or not, it is only through familiarity and insight that telemarketers are able to converse genuinely, probe effectively, discuss business efficiently and generate leads frequently.

B2B telemarketers must make an effort to be “personally acquainted” with what their prospects like in order to become an effective telemarketer. Know what types of marketing approaches pisses them off for you to reevaluate your strategies and make your efforts better.

Rule #1. Don’t Act Like a Telemarketer

  • What prospects don’t like

I’ll be honest with you. What prospects don’t like most are telemarketers. Every time they answer the phone and hear someone saying,

“Hi Andrew, this is Michael with XYZ Company. I’m calling about your ____. Is now a good time to talk?”


“Hi Andrew, this is Michael with XYZ Company. How are you doing today?”


“Hi Andrew, this is Michael with XYZ Company. I understand you are the best person to speak with and can decide about your _____?”

Your first 30 seconds is enough for prospects to decide whether to listen to you or hang up the phone. These lines allow them to identify you as a telemarketer. They know that telemarketers usually push their prospects to buy something they don’t need. This is basically a waste of time for them.

People who are not familiar with the telemarketing industry have a negative association with the word “telemarketer”. Even if it is in their best interest to hear what they have to say, they don’t want to be contacted by a telemarketer. 

Related: Rethinking Telemarketing and Its Spammy Reputation

  • What do they like?

They want someone who only wants to do business with them if there’s an opportunity and not someone who will waste their time by pushing the product or service just to close the deal.

  • What to do?

Let them know the purpose of your call. Ask questions such as; “When do you plan to evaluate your ERP software?” or “By the time of your evaluation, would you consider looking for new ERP software?”

If there’s an opportunity based on your prospect’s response, then proceed with the call. However, but if there’s no opportunity, thanked the prospect for taking your call, wish them well and end the call.

Related: Lessons Learned from a Robot Telemarketer: Samantha West

Rule #2. Focus on your Prospect

  • What prospects don’t like?

I know you’re as excited as any salesperson to discuss your product or service. However, prospects don’t like telemarketers who talk about their product or service. They don’t need to hear how awesome your business is and how many awards you’ve earned.

  • What do they like?

They appreciate it more if you can get straight to the point. Give them an impression that you’re interested in helping them by asking questions rather than focusing only on your product or service. Most of the time, prospects are looking for someone who can help them find a solution to solve their problems. Not someone who will push to sell their product or service without knowing if prospects can benefit from it. Be the telemarketer they can trust.

  • What to do?

According to Mark Hunter of thesaleshunter.com, “Sales is not about selling.  It’s about enabling the customer to benefit from what you’re providing.”

Find out about their current setup. What their needs are and if they have any issues or problems within their organization. How?

Ask questions such as;

“What ERP software are you currently using?”

“How long have you been using it?”

“How is it working for you?”

“Do you have any issues or problems with your current ERP solution?”

Then offer your product or service to let them know they can benefit from what you’re providing.

Related: The Four P’s Of Sales Leads Nurturing

Rule #3. Be Honest

  • What prospects don’t like?

Prospects hate it whenever telemarketers mislead them to get what they want. For example, a telemarketer saying, “I only need a few minutes of your time to discuss this.” Customers are smarter than that; they know there is more beyond that.

  • What do they like?

Instead of aiming to sell with every person you come in contact, let them know what you have to say and why you think you can help them solve their problems. Treat them as people, not targets. Yes, you do want to make the sale, but never forget to treat the prospects with the respect they deserve.

  • What to do?

When they ask questions about your product, be honest if you don’t have anything that can help them. Prospects appreciate sincerity and honesty. Also, if you’re not sure yet, you can tell them;

“Let me check about that and get back with you.”

Then, ask questions such as; “What exactly are the features that you’re looking for?” And assure them that you will look into it and get back with them if you already have the answer to what they’re looking for. How?


“May I have your email address so I can send you all the details that you need?” and “When will you be available for me to call you and discuss this again?”

Related: Show Customer Care with Inbound Lead Qualification

Rule #4. Be a Listener Rather Than a Speaker

  • What prospects don’t like?

Prospects don’t like it if telemarketers don’t listen.

For example, the prospect is asking about something and telemarketer failed to address the issue and just keeps on asking questions.

Telemarketer: We are a reseller of ERP software in Australia. I would like to know if you have plans of evaluating your ERP software in the next 6-12 months?

Prospect: We are using SAP. What does your software do?”

Telemarketer: How long have you been using SAP? Do you have any issues with it?

  • What do they like?

Never neglect your prospect! ALWAYS address their questions first. This way, you will be able to learn of your prospect’s situation and be able to offer solutions on how your product or service can help them. They don’t want to buy your product because it’s the best; they want to hear why they need it.

As a telemarketer, you must know that in order for you to close the deal, you must earn your prospects trust by showing how you value them as a person. Let them know that you only mean business and that your goal is to help them. If they are not interested and you can’t see any opportunities, do not mislead them and push them into making a decision to purchase. Prospects are smarter nowadays, they don’t decide right away, So it is better to walk them through it and show them the door.