What is appointment setting?
Working in sales is a lot like being a decathlete. As the business world changes, so too do the number of skills and disciplines that your sales team will need to have and, just like a decathlete, the members of your sales team will inevitably be stronger in some areas than others.
The phone is a sales person’s greatest weapon, but if used incorrectly it could also be their Achilles’ heel. The simple fact is that it doesn’t matter how great your rapport-building skills are, or how great your ability to put together a killer presentation is, if you can’t get an appointment in the first place.
Studies have shown that by having a specialist sales team, whereby each person is responsible for a specific section of the sales process, that you’ll book more appointments – Insidesales.com refers to this as the ‘specialist model’.
By putting a team of specialists in place you allow each person to focus on their strengths, leaving you with a process that looks something like:
- Marketing passes the lead to the appointment setters
- Appointment setters then follow up on the lead and qualify further. The ideal outcome being a qualified appointment with the closing team or, if they are not ready, hand back to marketing for further nurturing
- Once an appointment is confirmed either face to face, by phone, or online demonstration it is passed to the relevant closer to ideally close the deal
- This is truly the golden opportunity as once a lead gets to this point, there is rarely the chance to hand it back to marketing
- Assuming a successful meeting and the lead is now a client, you can then pass them onto account management for the long term
Of course, not every organisation is big enough to support such a team structure, or you might be looking to bring in a new approach – this is where a dedicated appointment-setting service comes in.
An appointment-setting service, like the one offered here at MarketMakers, will allow you and your team to focus on the closing part of the sales process – bringing an inherent uplift in sales efficiency because your team will be working with pre-qualified appointments. These appointments can either be generated from your own lead generation sources such as your marketing campaigns or from pre-sourced data that aligns with your target demographic.
The final piece of the puzzle is the lead researcher. This really is the role of the unsung hero because they spend hours utilising tools such as LinkedIn to identify companies that you do not work with. They then call into the company to verify their requirements – this is the fundamental part.
The objective here is not to get a qualification for an appointment, but to simply verify that there may be a requirement for your services. This is a soft approach and must be treated as such right from the start. Their role is to intelligently identify businesses that you can follow up with a more direct approach, leaving your outbound prospectors or telemarketing agency to get that all important initial meeting.
Sales is all about working smarter. With the ever changing face of modern business, you need to work to the strengths of your team members – even if that means outsourcing.