In the B2B world, the difference between sales and marketing is an idea that you almost learn on instinct. But sometimes knowing that difference does nothing but create tug-o-wars on what defines a lead or what defines a promising sales appointment.
It doesn’t go away even when you’ve outsourced your appointment setting services to another company. They still come back, asking you for any more specifications. Why is that? Could you really be any more specific? Does it really say more about marketers than it says about salespeople?
Give yourself a test with the following questions:
#1. How much do you know about your target market?
Don’t be ashamed to admit that you don’t know much. It only goes to show that outsourcing was a good decision. Perhaps the industries you’re targeting are unfamiliar to you. Maybe you’re just a relatively young business and really don’t know where to start.
Either way, the experience of an outsourced appointment setter can prove valuable. Use your kick off meetings as opportunities to learn. But don’t’ just stop at learning though. Salespeople should be prepared for the same lessons so that they can do well with whatever leads and appointments they generate.
#2. How much responsibility are you willing to entrust?
Now while it pays to listen and learn from your appointment setters, you should always be careful of how much time that consumes. Sometimes the lessons need to wait for other obligations (e.g. financial management, R&D, other sales etc).
How willing are you to leave them in charge? The more willing you are, the more accountability you hold your outsourced appointment setters. That’s not something every vendor will just take up eagerly. That’s why they’d rather collaborate with you closely and educate you, to keep too much of the work going to them. Try to balance it out by outlining the responsibilities clearly.
#3. Would you rather keep it simple?
People think that simpler terms are all the more better in business communication. But while that is true, simplifying things actually requires an understanding of what makes them complex. That’s why it’s important to both learn as much from what appointment setters can teach you and outline their responsibilities clearly at the same time. It helps you identify what you want from an appointment setting campaign and they get accustomed to your target market now that you’ve identified it.
Defining a lead or creating buyer profiles are responsibilities that go back forth between sales and marketers. If you need to make time between the two, that’s what you use it for. Don’t grow weary if your appointment setters ask for something more specific.