What are telemarketing lists?
Telemarketing lists are a lead generation tool to connect you with people that may have an interest in your products and services. Your telemarketing sales team can use these lists to organize a sales campaign by phone to promote the benefits of your business to potential customers, such as people who have previously purchased items similar to yours.
Telemarketing lists can be effective because they allow you to immediately gauge customer interest in your product or service by talking with them directly. You don't have the waiting time traditionally reserved with direct mail or even e-mail. You can also combine a phone marketing campaign with direct mail by requesting telemarketing lists with both phone and mailing address information to maximize your sales potential.
The role of the telemarketing list broker
A broker will typically obtain names for a telemarketing list from a list owner. When you get a list from a broker, you are not buying it - you're renting it. Typically, you'll rent a telemarketing list for one-time use, but it's also possible to rent a list for unlimited use in a given time period.
Brokers can help reduce the work necessary to find new customers with an interest in products and services similar to yours. They update the data regularly for accuracy and remove "dead" entries. Brokers are also required by law to filter lists through the national Do Not Call database.
While a useful resource, the broker can't do everything - they may not be able to provide much help with how to use the list. For helping mapping out your list marketing efforts, work with a telemarketing services company instead.
Types of telemarketing lists
Brokers typically offer two main types of lists: compiled and response. Compiled lists are huge databases of information for tens of millions of consumers and businesses that are populated with information collected from various public sources. Response lists are more targeted databases containing detailed information from people who have either inquired about a particular product or service, or permitted companies to contact them.
Telemarketing list brokers can provide both consumer and business mailing lists. Business lists are compiled from public business directories, annual reports, government agencies, and postal information. Consumer lists are compiled from phone directories, auto registration, driver's licenses, and government records such as birth certificates and marriage licenses.
You can further hone in on specific information about your potential clients by targeting your telemarketing lists. Brokers allow you to target detailed demographics and purchasing habits by choosing specific "selects" to target your lists. You can focus on particular professions, skills, or interests or develop a targeted local telemarketing campaign within a state or region.
Business-to-business lists can be narrowed by selects such as SIC code, annual revenue and employee size. Similarly, a consumer list may include selects for buying history, household income, location, and credit rating. The more category filters you select, the more targeted your list will be. However, such specific targeting comes at a premium: a targeted list will cost considerably more per name.
Why telemarketing lists?
You can use telemarketing lists as a means of contacting the people who may have an interest in the products and services you offer. The phone numbers featured in a list owners' databases are verified against the Do Not Call list on a month-to-month basis to ensure that those numbers are permanently removed from the system.
If you have the resources and experience to contact potential customers by phone, a list can be an inexpensive option: your only significant costs are the list, the phone bill, and man-hours.
However using a telemarketing list may also be the most difficult way to close new business. Many clients like to see the product in front of them or meet those offering a service in person. Telemarketing lists may be a more powerful way to introduce your business to new clients, but it's not as concrete as direct mail or email marketing methods.
Many telemarketing list brokers want to make sure that you'll treat the people on their list with a level of professionalism, and so will require you to show them the script you plan to use for your telemarketing efforts.
You can either develop a script in-house or hire someone to do it for you. This will require qualified writers who can develop an outline of direct phone conversation to understand the philosophy and psychology that goes into selling over the phone. Or, you can look into special software that provides telemarketing script templates to help you design your own script.
The telemarketing script is more of a guideline to directing the conversation than a step-by-step guide - it should be adjustable so telemarketers have material to work with but don't sound like robots when referencing it.
Telemarketing list purchasing checklist
Here are some things to keep in mind before purchasing a telemarketing list:
- Do I have sufficient staff to do a telemarketing campaign?
- How targeted does my list need to be?
- How much can I afford to budget for a telemarketing list?
- Can someone in-house create my telemarketing script?
- What can I do to create my own telemarketing list?
- What should I look for in a reliable telemarketing list broker?
- Are there ways I can follow-up with a telemarketing sales call?
- Which services can provide my business with more than just lists?
Telemarketing list prices are based on a cost per thousand impressions (CPM). The typical broker has a 5,000 to 10,000 phone number minimum with a CPM of $100 to $150 for consumer numbers and $160 to $300 for business numbers.
Selects can add anywhere from $5 to more than $100 to the CPM, depending on how scarce information is for a particular select. Many brokers will enforce a minimum charge, regardless of the size of the list, as the selects you add reduce the quantity of numbers available.
Telemarketing services vendors can create a script for $25 to $60 per hour. You can also purchase telemarketing script software from $50 to a few hundred dollars for a lifetime license, or $50 to $100 for a 6-12 month rental.
Telemarketing list tips
Consider telemarketing services. A telemarketing sales campaign can be expensive and require you to invest thousands of dollars in large-scale telemarketing phone and call center equipment. Look into full-service companies that can use their resources to develop a list and make sales calls on your behalf.
Start at the top. Most telemarketing scripts are geared towards reaching the people that have the "ear" of those involved in making a company's purchasing decisions such as the CEO or CFO. These are the people you want to talk to when you call them.
Beware of faux bargains. An "expired" list may be cheap to buy, but may cost your company more in the long run with poor response rates.
Plan ahead. If you're expecting to conduct a sales campaign using a telemarketing list, have a plan of action in place before you get it. You don't want to appear ill-prepared on the phone as it may be your only opportunity for a deal with that client.
Don't be seedy. Only use the list as much as you and the broker agreed to. Brokers monitor how many times a list is used by including "seeds" - fake names and phone numbers that go directly to a real voicemail box to monitor how many times a number is used.