Previously, random door-to-door salespeople selling goods, such as a set of steak knives, or some service were a regular occurrence. Then telephones became more commonplace and cold calls started coming through, at any time of the day, completely unannounced.
We all deal with telemarketers in different ways depending on the time of day and the mood were in. Some of us entertain the caller on the other end and others flat out decline any interaction.
It seems though that the days of the telemarketer are numbered, with a number of factors contributing to its demise. Not only are sales over the phone decreasing at a fast rate but also the mental health of telemarketers appears to be jeopardised by the constant rejection.
Barry Urquhart explained on the Sean for Breakfast Show, that neither the caller, the company contracting call centres nor the person answering the call benefit from the exchange.
Firstly workers at call centres, generally young adults or teenagers, are suffering from the constant mental beating due to rejection. “Self-image, psyche, rejection, is it me? Very, very strong (the effect of the rejections)” as Barry explains, “that’s unfortunately the type of situation that arises”.
The company contracting the telemarketer is also at a loss. Cold calling is becoming less successful because buyers are more sceptical of telephone calls. Previously, spontaneous buys would be the driving force behind the calls success, now wherever with the rise of internet shopping, customers know that a purchase doesn’t have to be over the telephone, they just need to head to their laptops to access a wide range of the product or service with subsequent bargains attached.
The other big issue is that, often these calls are made at the wrong time, so simply the consumer does not have the minutes in their schedule to sit down and be persuaded to buy.
The call centre as a business suffers as well. Barry again, “because they get such high rejection rates, the call centre operators have a high attrition rate. Their turnover is quite profound. Many people leave in the first three days and a large proportion are gone within three weeks.”
Finally, there is the product of service utilising the call service, they must also be wary. “It tarnishes the brand.” Barry says, “you have to be very careful about brand management... when it’s a cold call, it’s a very marginal proposition of success so it can actually damage the quality of the concept of the product, so be very careful with the way you do business”
Therefore, why do companies continue to use telemarketers, despite the overwhelming evidence that they are NOT working. Barry explains. “it’s old fashioned thinking, and they don’t know how to reach out and connect with a lot of people so through random calls is the way to do it.” And, of course, with majority cold call centre being based overseas there is often a low cost attached with using the service.
However, a cost is still a cost and there may (soon) be a time when the obvious lack of success of this type of exchange may not be worth the low cost attached.
Barry Urquhart and Marketing Service provide a service to your business and offer advice marketing, promoting or running your organisation if needed.
To hear more about this chat please listen at the link below on the Sean for Breakfast Catch Up Podcast.