Telesales, also known as telemarketing, has earned a bad reputation in many business circles. Before consumer's legislation, telesales agents or telemarketers had unfettered access to potential clients. Anyone with a telephone listing was guaranteed an evening call from an unsolicited sales person.

But that doesn't mean that telesales has to be a dead business avenue. In fact, telemarketing continues to play an incredibly important role in the sales process. It's far more efficient to use highly trained, inside sales personnel to call, answer questions, promote businesses, and develop sales than it is to employ an expensive outside sales force.

Telesales is especially effective because it closes the gap that is often created between the time of marketing (or the purchase of leads), and the time sales people can contact prospective leads. Telemarketing can easily make those marketing leads even more effective by truly qualifying them over the phone. Rather than a wasted face-to-face visit, a good telesales associate can qualify the potential client, find out who the decision makers are, and produce documented leads for the outside sales force.

In fact, in many instances, telesales associates have eliminated the need for outside sales associates. With so much commerce done over the Internet and via catalogs, telephone sales people can provide much of the same information as an outside sales associate. Clients are able to view products or samples over the web, while the telesales professional answer questions, up-sells when appropriate and creates a strong client relationships.

Of course, telesales or telemarketing is not a job for just anyone. This job requires some very specific skills. Along with all the other sales skills you associate with a selling position, the telemarketer also has to have the ability to be persuasive on the phone, to use their voice in a manner that attracts attention, establishes camaraderie, and shows enthusiasm. Some of the best sales people are people persons. They like to get out there and meet new people. A telemarketer has to have those same skills, yet be quite content to sit behind a desk in a cubicle or phone bank. They also have to have a thick skin. This is one of the jobs that virtually guarantees angry hang-ups in response to calls.

Fortunately, outsourcing has made inside phone sales an affordable method for adding to a sales staff. Many outsourcing agencies offer highly skilled telemarketers - able to work around the clock to contact your clients all over the globe. In addition, these companies also offer continual supervision for the sales staff. They demand that the sales person meet a certain standard for professionalism and offer on-going training to improve quality control and customer service.

Adding a telesales or telemarketing staff can be one of the most effective methods for increasing your business sales. However, it is a decision that needs to be carefully balanced by available staff, appropriate skills, or funds for outsourcing. Using telephone sales people can be a great way to connect with clients and establish a fast method of sales - but make sure you have the right people in place to represent your company over the phone.

Source: James Copper