What is a B2B appointment setting? Is it just a cold call ending with a confirmed meeting? And does it have the same goal as lead generation? This article will let you understand how appointment setting works, who an appointment setter is, and why lead qualification matters in business today. Also, we'll specify the difference between warm leads, prospects, and qualified leads.
What Is Appointment Scheduling in B2B?
B2B appointment setting is the process of scheduling meetings with your potential purchasers.
In-house or outsourced sales representatives can call or email prospects to agree on a day and time of an appointment. And during these meetings, qualified sales managers pitch the product or service to top-of-funnel leads. So, cold calls are pretty far from the appointment setting process, though sometimes your salespeople can schedule appointments during the first communication with potential buyers.
Talking about cold outreach, let's step back from arranging meetings and look at the process of generating leads. People often think that lead generation and appointment setting are the same activities. They have common features because scheduling sales appointments is one of the types of lead generation. So, they both belong to the same sales process and aim at closing sales.
What Is Lead Generation?
Lead generation embraces the whole sales funnel, from finding potential clients to converting them into buyers.
First, your sales team researches LinkedIn and other web resources to collect emails of new potential clients. Your selling specialists select those people according to the criteria of your ideal customer profile. But they still have no idea about your company and show no interest in your products or services. These contacts are called cold leads.
Then you launch the cold email campaign and get some primary results. Some recipients will just read your message, while others will click the CTA (Call to Action) link or reply. And your sales team members will mark such contacts as warm leads.
Users who subscribe to your newsletter, fill in the contact form on your website, follow you on Instagram, join your webinars, or provide their emails in exchange for a lead magnet also fall in this category. Now you can call each warm lead a prospect. Professionals also call them marketing qualified prospects or MQLs.
Your prospective clients become hot leads when they show interest in your product or services. For example, they can reply to your emails to initiate a meeting or make phone calls to ask for some details. And only at this stage do appointment setters reach out to decision-makers with the value proposition and an offer to schedule an offline meeting. These are sales-qualified prospects, or SQLs, who were nurtured to meet all the business-to-business lead qualification criteria. And sellers expect them to agree to their sales appointment offer. Below, we'll check what these people are and what they do to provide sales.
What Does an Appointment Setter Do?
Someone asks, "What is an appointment setter?" Well, this question sounds like an appointment setter is an automation tool for arranging meetings with potential customers.
Appointment setters are professionals regularly calling people to convince them to learn more about your business, services, or products. And such experts need to have specific skills to be successful.
For instance, they have to assess each potential buyer before the contact to estimate if this prospect is ready to move down the sales pipeline. And in addition to a high school diploma, this professional needs to build rapport and be prepared to deal with objections and rejections. Moreover, to craft the perfect pitch, an appointment setter has to know the product’s value perfectly and explain it to key decision-makers.
So, typical daily activities of an SDR (Sales Development Representative) include researching information for cold email personalization, making calls, contacting relevant companies on social media, detecting sales opportunities, monitoring CRM tasks, and crafting engaging follow-ups. A successful appointment setter can make thousands of calls and schedule hundreds of meetings. So, these lead generation specialists are critical for businesses.
Importance of Appointment Setting
Still, why is appointment setting important? Because this process ensures a constant inflow of business prospects with high chances of conversion. So, each appointment set maximizes the chances of getting revenues and covering the operational activities of companies. It allows you to grow the brand awareness of your company and ensures its growth.
For example, professional appointment setters in Belkins embrace around 5,000 tasks each month. So, these experts must possess the right combination of skills and entirely focus on the appointment setting process. But a corporate sales representative often has plenty of other assignments to fulfill and doesn't always possess all the required skills to qualify leads, find the right words, and manage a prospect's hesitation.
By the way, outsourcing appointment setting functions from top-notch companies can be more cost-effective. And below are some of the advantages of this approach to lead generation.
Benefits of B2B Appointment Setting Services
Okay, what exactly does an appointment setter do, and how can your business benefit from hiring a skilled appointment setter? The following advantages will probably convince you to delegate B2B appointment setting services to a reliable company with a five-star rating on Clutch.
- Appointment setters will correctly qualify future customers. Identifying which buyer journey stage your contact person passes is one of the essential skills. And your appointment setting services company will help assess each potential client and send a relevant offer. Specialists will use proven qualification methodologies to check if the target market user is ready to buy.
- Appointment setters will build rapport with prospective clients effectively. When you make calls to contact prospects, it's vital to create a trustful atmosphere during the conversation. And professionals offering appointment setting services can deliver your product value and discover customers' pain points, sounding optimistic and friendly.
- Appointment setters will turn the objections of a potential client into opportunities. When building rapport from the first words, appointment setting services company representatives can eliminate rejections and objections even before they arise. Moreover, these specialists can notice an opportunity to turn any objection to the sales opportunity. Needless to say, such professional skills are only gained through years of experience.
- Appointment setters send timely follow-ups and reminders. Professional appointment setters know that even when a manager adds a meeting to the calendar, it still doesn't mean this meeting will take place. But each of these professionals in your company knows that a reminder sent several hours before the appointment will help to decrease no-show rates.
Appointment Setting via Email - Video Overview
The appointment setting is the final stage of the lead generation process. It assumes that a sales rep offers to schedule a meeting with a potential client and probably close a sale. And since the continuous inflow of new customers is critical for any business, setting appointments is one of the business priorities. But in-house sales people can do their jobs more effectively once supported by professional appointment setting companies.
Do you want to enhance your sales team with professional appointment setting services? Drop a line to Belkins SDRs and fill your sales pipeline with hot leads!