Telemarketing, like any advertising medium, is a necessity for many companies. It gets their products through to more and more people, and in doing so, increases their sales and growth even if only by a small margin. However, as seen in the survey conducted in Australia this year (Santow, 2008), the reactions toward telemarketing are at its lowest. It is seen, not as a marketing strategy, but more of an intrusion of privacy, a sickening tactic that does not respect the potential market, which it hopes to sell their products to. Violent reactions are just the tip of the iceberg as there are now more and more complaints towards telemarketing (Santow, 2008).
In truth, my opinion towards telemarketing is separate from my opinion of the telemarketers who do their job as they are instructed. Most telemarketers are simply following the protocols, doing their job the way they are tasked to do. They maintain etiquette and a level of politeness as seen in most, if not all, sales person. The negativity towards telemarketers stem from the concept of telemarketing itself and not on the telemarketers. Telemarketing is telephone marketing where companies sell their products or services directly to the consumer via a telephone conversation. The power of such a technique comes from a quick assessable feedback system since the consumer is able to react almost instantaneously to the offer compared to other mediums such as print, television or radio ads (Smith & Taylor, 2004, p.415). However, since most people have adverse reactions towards telemarketing, telemarketers have to be careful with how they proceed.
Several modifications in their approach can enhance the success of telemarketing or at least minimize the negativity of potential customers. The top priority for such telemarketers is to develop a list of potential customers that are highly likely to buy. Most telemarketing occurs such that random people are called upon, even those who have received such phone calls negatively in the past. A list that consists only of those people who have accepted such phone calls and have successfully purchased products or services for a particular company or brand is essential. Another key objective that must be met is the training of telemarketers to be able to stop themselves from reacting negatively towards harsh criticism or reaction by customers. Adverse reactions will occur and it telemarketers must never retaliate. In relation to this, telemarketers must be patient and highly motivated. Many rejections will occur before a successful sale is accomplished. This must be understood so that amidst rejections, the process would still continue. Lastly, a well-developed script can be used. The script must be respectful but also clear. It must leave space for the client to decide and not be too aggressive. However, it must also guide the consumer into buying the product. A well-written, intellectual script that is both respectful and influential will do wonders for telemarketers (Bendremer, 2003, p.12).
It should be remembered that telemarketers are just doing their jobs and are working hard in doing it. As such, it is not necessary for the public to make fun of them or disrespect them whenever they are encountered. It does not matter that they can become annoying because people have to remember that it is not their fault and the public should not make it a personal issue. If people do not like to receive calls from them, they should get themselves listed on the “Do Not Call” list. They also have the option to say politely that they are not interested in what the callers have to offer. Telemarketers, on the other hand, and the companies they represent should respect the privacy and decisions of consumers and should know when to stop calling or talking during the conversation.
Bendremer, E. (2003). Top Telemarketing Techniques. New Jersey: Career Press.
Santow, S. (2008, December 8). Hanging on the telephone. Retrieved December 8, 2008, from http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2008/s2440556.htm
Smith, P. R. & Taylor, J. (2004). Marketing Communications. Virginia: Kogan Page Publishers.