By Michelle Cirocco, Director, Sales Operations, Televerde

(This is the fourth in series of Televerde Best practice reports on the 10 stages within an integrated, optimized demand creation strategy.)

Have you ever wondered why it seems to take so much longer to get to your vacation destination than it does to get home?  The meticulous planning, ongoing preparation, anticipation and the time actually takes to get where you’re going often seems to take longer than actual trip itself.   But as any experienced traveler or vacation junkie like myself knows, it the early attention to the details that makes for the most memorable and successful vacations.

So, now that you’ve completed all the pre-work necessary to embark on a successful demand creation “trip” the next logical stop on our journey is Milepost #4, the design and execution of integrated Demand Creation and Discovery program which includes the following elements.

Demand Creation & Discovery

  • Lead Generation
  • Lead Qualification
  • Appointment-Setting
  • Event Recruitment
  • Direct Sales

These programs are driven by an integrated, dialogue plus digital-based methodology that is unduplicated in our industry. The agents we assign to be your dedicated team are all experienced market specialists. They are highly trained and have specific competencies organized along four key dimensions.

The first dimension is around campaign objectives, which include contact discovery, event recruitment, appointment-setting, lead qualification, lead generation and direct sales. We’ll talk more about these types of programs in a minute.

The second dimension is experience in specific segments like SMB, enterprise accounts, government or education.

The third competency dimension is industry expertise. Examples here include healthcare, manufacturing, financial or transportation, just to name a few. We have experience in many industries that our clients have asked us to help them penetrate.

And the fourth dimension of skills and competencies is based on the nature of your products and solutions, whether that’s software, hardware or services. The competencies of the team can be more finely segmented within each of the specific product types that comprise these categories.

I want to take a few minutes to explain our demand creation programs and capabilities.

Event Recruitment: We provide event recruitment services which includes recruitment, registration and confirmation of targeted attendees for your face-to-face or online marketing and customer events. Using both a dialogue and digital-based approach we can provide accelerated and broader market coverage to expand awareness of your event and increase registration opportunities. Our high-impact approach includes email and telephone outreach, an online registration system, and well-time reminders and confirmations to improve registrant-to-attendee ratios. We also provide event follow-up services that are nicely integrated with lead qualification and nurture programs.

Appointment-Setting: The objective of our appointment-setting service is to discover opportunities for qualified meetings with your targeted decision-making or decision-influencing contacts. Based on pre-determined qualification criteria, we’ll identify opportunities for face-to-face or telephone-based meetings. And to help ensure that these meetings take place we also provide an additional layer of support to your sales reps for appointment scheduling and confirmation. We’ll talk more about the value of our Sales Support & Optimization service a bit later in the presentation.

Lead Qualification: Our lead qualification programs are designed to qualify and prioritize responders from your marketing outreach programs and other lead sources like web site visitors or event and webinar registrants and attendees. We follow-up with responders to gauge their interest level and their qualification criteria. In many cases this service is used by clients who have a large volume of unqualified leads and don’t want to lose any opportunities due to the time it takes for the sales team to coordinate all the follow-up. We can identify the opportunities that are either ready for immediate sales engagement or that are more appropriate for a longer-term nurturing program.

Lead Generation: Our lead generation programs are a primary service offering and the most common entry point for our new clients. They are engineered specifically for your target markets and to meet your desired qualification levels. These programs can have a duration of a few months to a few years depending on sales cycle length and the scale of your needs. They can be finely targeted to a specific market for a specific product. Or we can design programs around multiple markets and product lines. The resulting opportunities can be directed to a variety of channels including inside sales teams, field sales or channel partners. And of course we can easily integrate our lead generation activities with ongoing nurture programs and a level of direct sales support to ensure that no opportunities are left behind.

Direct Sales: We also have direct sales capabilities. Serving as a seamless, outsourced extension of your sales force, we’ll not only generate and qualify new sales opportunities, but can also close them on your behalf. Clients who have used this service value the additional “feet on the street” resources we provide and the improved sales performance at low marginal cost compared to employing in-house sales staff. We can provide more depth to your market coverage in overlooked and secondary areas of opportunity where your sales staff may not be focused.

Tune in next week for Larry’s exploration of Milepost #5:  Nurture.

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