The telemarketing industry has long been a vital component of commerce. This direct marketing method first gained popularity in the 1970s, then experienced exponential growth over the next decades. Like all marketing strategies, advances in call center technologies, user habits, and industry trends have shaped the current operation of telemarketing service providers. Several emerging trends will continue to influence the industry into 2018 and beyond.
Trend #1: Process Improvement
In recent years, the practice of Business Process Improvement, known as BPI, has become an important aspect of service delivery in the telemarketing and direct marketing fields. It is closely related to Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), which in this case is the outsourcing of direct marketing services to third-party providers. BPI focuses on improving the quality, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of telemarketing services, streamlining operations to provide enhanced service delivery to clients. In the BPI model, experts implement several factors to improve service delivery, including the analysis of existing client and telemarketing processes, developing training tools, and creating a goal system where client outcomes are targeted and achieved.
Process improvement is not unique to the telemarketing industry. Corporations around the world have developed methods and systems for continuous improvement, including those in the manufacturing and product development fields. The goal of any such improvement strategy is to work with more efficiency, identifying areas that underperform to expectations or goals and developing solutions to stimulate enhanced performance. Telemarketing firms that incorporate BPI into their operations are helping to ensure success well into the future.
Trend #2: Multichannel Customer Care
For product and service support systems, customers have come to expect around-the-clock support. Accessing customer care services is no longer constrained to call centers; the most successful customer service operations have adopted a multichannel model that provides support access via telephone, online chat, email, or even in-person services.
In several industry-wide studies, business that have added multichannel customer care reported more than 50% in customer satisfaction gains over those customer service centers that offer only one access method. Customers demand a better and faster experience when seeking support, and those customer care centers that implement this delivery model will stand out from competitors. Live chat systems and social media support are trending as the most popular new access points in multichannel customer care.
Trend #3: Added Value
Companies seeking the assistance of a dedicated direct marketing service provider used to focus on costs above all else. This focus has changed substantially in recent years as third-party telemarketing have risen to the challenges of enhanced service delivery. Telemarketing companies that add value to the client relationship, such as enhanced support features, multichannel access, and innovative technologies, will continue to dominate the industry. No longer are companies looking only for the most inexpensive service provider; today’s companies want the best value possible, both in terms of costs and in the overall customer experience.