Telemarketing companies are engaged by clients to find the right key decision makers and communicate compelling messages. Most telemarketing companies would say they stand or fall on their ability to achieve this task well. But does this always mean a sales lead is generated? You might think so. However, the answer is almost certainly no.
What’s the point of going through the agony of finding decision maker names, dialling numerous attempts to catch them, mustering the pluck to get your message out, asking open questions, and phew… finally the close… if you’re not even going to get a sale at the end of it all. Some might say this is a waste of time if you don’t actually make a marketshare gain, like winning the sale or taking an order away from the competition. The truth is, telemarketing companies will not just be concerned with generating tangible, measurable results, whether they’re sales leads, meetings or sales transactions. In fact, the work of telemarketing companies is more often about having a series of two-way conversations with potential buyers that are simple enough to challenge the way they think. The premise being that if you do this often enough, and well enough, eventually sales or marketshare if you like, will follow.
Selling and sales
These days the task of selling is rarely about just winning orders. As more markets become saturated, the differentiating factor between one product and its competitors becomes harder to define. Everything starts to look broadly the same. When this happens, people and their collective personalities and attitudes become the main factor making a company stand out from the crowd. In the same way that we all remember great service, those calls that stick out in our mind because someone was charismatic, knowledgeable, demonstrated understanding of our business, will be the ones that stand out for us. And that’s what we call mindshare! It’s not just about being ‘nice’ it’s about truly connecting with people, and building an army of supporters as we go through our day.
It’s all in the mind
When mindshare works, it means that clients, customers, or prospects connect with your business and its values. Yes, it’s likely to create marketshare at some point, but on its own, it’s not a tangible sale. So where marketshare is measurable as the amount of revenue you generate, mindshare is about how well people remember your brand or business which is much harder to define.
Thought leadership publishers Future of Customer Engagement and Experience describe a failure to create this warm mindshare factor as the Chewbacca Syndrome. They explain the effect. ‘It happens frequently to those who are completely neck deep in their company lingo and have a unilaterally inside-out view of the world. The customer’s reality and the market situation might as well be on a disconnected parallel universe, for all the consideration it’s given’. One of their key recommendations to avoid Chewbacca syndrome is to put the customer at the centre of your universe. In other words, take the trouble to reflect on their needs and wants before diving into your remit to sell.
So why care?
Telemarketing companies consider mindshare to be as important as marketshare. Quite simply because the leads we generate this month might be a measure of marketshare, but the value we deliver in six months is attributable to mindshare, and depends on how we influence people today. When organisations are only concerned with winning sales, the culture within the sales team will be self-serving and flawed. Like the Chewbacca Syndrome, it’s a bit cheesy and repellent and definitely isn’t for organisations with an eye on long-term sustainability.