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Telemarketing is still an effective channel

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Deborah N. Winders has been VP-circulation at Computerworld since September 2003 and with IDG for 15 years. Her last direct mail campaign went out early in 2006.

MB: Which is more successful, e-mail or telemarketing?

Winders: Telemarketing. The key is finding the right list and making sure you're calling the correct people to begin with. If you've got that, you can still do pretty well.

MB: Does that shock you? People don't like to be bothered by telemarketers.

Winders: It doesn't shock me. Our audience is IT professionals at medium-to-large companies. These CIOs, VPs of IT, are busy. They don't have time to sit down and fill out a written form or go online and answer a million questions. They can multitask while they're on the phone. They'll take the call. I've never understood why some people look at telemarketing requests as having less value than a written or online form.

MB: Does value change market to market, or is it the same across the board?

Winders: I can't speak for the farming industry. I know in our industry it works well, and I imagine that it would work well in other industries. Farmers aren't near their computers. Contractors aren't near their computers. If we can get them on their cell phones, why not? And there are lists now that provide cell phone numbers. You can actually put your cell phone number on the do-not-call list now. Otherwise, marketers will be calling your cell phone.

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