Commentators have been predicting the imminent demise of telemarketing as a business strategy. They’ve associated the practice with annoying consumers through life interruptions. There’s also the outsize impact of scammers. The harm their fraud causes to legitimate industry is significant. What do these trends and issues point to? What will telemarketing in 2020 look like, and what comes after that?
The Current Trends
In 2017, Deloitte carried out a study of contact center customer interaction trends. They came to some interesting conclusions about the near future. In that same year, 64 percent of customer interactions occurred over the phone. Email came in second with 18 percent, and online chat at 6 percent. All other methods were at 4 % or less.
By 2019, though, those companies expected those numbers to shift in dramatic fashion. Phone calls would decline to account to less than half of all interactions. Email would fall a couple of percentage points, but chat would rise to become its equal. Social media would increase to enable 9 percent of interactions. Even SMS/Text messages would see a resurgence to 6 percent from the current 2.
So far, it looks like the trends have been right.
The World of Telemarketing in 2020
2019 is the year that customer interactions became more than 50 percent digital. There’s no sign of that slowing down. Customers and prospects trust phone calls less and less. In 2018, they received over 48 billion illegal robocalls. The FCC and FTC have been consistent in their advice. They recommend that consumers stop answering any calls from unfamiliar numbers.
If people take that advice to heart, it could be the death of scams that target individuals. But it’s not something that most small businesses can afford to do. They have to be able to answer calls from unknown prospective customers. It’s possible that future pressure to stop cold calls from all sources may come from that direction.
The most important trend is the rise of chat as a consumer interaction tool. It has become the easiest and fastest way to get accurate information about each other. That means higher customer satisfaction and more repeat sales. Watch for this trend to continue taking off.
Telemarketing in 2020 is likely to see less reliance on phones for cold outreach. We can expect an increase in the value of inbound chat interaction.
Don’t Write Off The Phones Yet
There’s still an important role for telemarketing to play, though. Chat interactions often serve only as the top of the sales funnel. Once a prospect becomes interested, though, a vocal touch becomes important.
Boomsourcing helps client companies provide that kind of personal and human interaction. If your business needs a better way to reach out to prospects and help them decide to buy, contact us. We’ll show you why telemarketing in 2020 and beyond is all about building humanity.