Telemarketing is NOT something you have to do!

I’ve been stewing on this for a while now, and I can’t hold it in any more. Cold Calling, and in general telemarketing, SUCK!

I’m going to pick on conferences for two reasons. 1. it’s my business, and 2. Conferences most definitely should be be telemarketing, other businesses shouldn’t either, but conferences?!

My irritation started with Robo Ted calling about MAX. LAME! Not only was it not really Ted, it wasn’t a real person, it was a recorded message. Whatever that cost, should have been taken off of the price of registration, I’m sure it woulda had a better result on registrations.

Then there was CFUnited just the other day. The worst part (Actually there’s two) was that it was an Indian guy with such a thick accent I barely understood why he was calling and asking me to register. The other worst part, I was already registered! According to Liz

lizign @jwilker telemarketing is just something we gotta do. sucks i know.  don’t know what else to do except make the calls myself?

I call Bull Shit. Not only is it not something you gotta do, but if you took whatever you paid thick accent Indian guy, off the rpice of admission, you wouldn’t need to call and bug people to register.

And that’s the problem with this kind of crap marketing. I went to CFUnited a few years ago. I’m going this year on behalf of the Flex Show, different email address. I can only assume that’s why I got a “Please come to CFUnited” call, when I already was.

Weak Sauce. Tom and I would never in a million years call our attendees. We don’t even like having to send emails, since we feel spammy. Calling, hellz no!

3 thoughts on “Telemarketing is NOT something you have to do!

  1. Rob

    did you write this for me? ;)

    now, of course i have a lot of vested interest in this conversation. however, let me just say that –

    conference telemarketing is dead. conference email marketing is very-soon-to-be dead. it comes down to this — in a flat media world with infinite messages, the ONLY successful marketing is the message that is wanted, expected, and valuable.

    more so than in any time in history, the average person is highly skilled at ignoring a marketing message from a biased party. we look to trusted sources recommendations and data about purchases. of course, conferences know this model well — their business is largely based on being a trusted "validator" of the vendors (sponsors) in an industry to the buyers that attend their shows.

    this same approach must be used by the conferences themselves to market to potential attendees. it's the same stuff with different language — attendees call their "trusted sources" "friends" or "contacts". what is needed is a new class of tools that use the web's knowledge of "friends" & "contacts" to encourage, incent, and measure trusted recommendations for conferences.

    i have this crazy hypothesis that the social web is opening a whole new way to get people to conferences. and it's going to be way more about getting a message from someone i trust than from some random dude from india.

    sorry about the monologue — you just hit on something i happen to have been thinking about recently :)

  2. Rob

    did you write this for me? ;)

    now, of course i have a lot of vested interest in this conversation. however, let me just say that –

    conference telemarketing is dead. conference email marketing is very-soon-to-be dead. it comes down to this — in a flat media world with infinite messages, the ONLY successful marketing is the message that is wanted, expected, and valuable.

    more so than in any time in history, the average person is highly skilled at ignoring a marketing message from a biased party. we look to trusted sources for recommendations and data about purchases. of course, conferences know this model well — their business is largely based on being a trusted "validator" of the vendors (sponsors) in an industry to the buyers that attend their shows.

    this same approach must be used by the conferences themselves to market to potential attendees. it's the same stuff with different language — attendees call their "trusted sources" "friends" or "contacts". what is needed is a new class of tools that use the web's knowledge of "friends" & "contacts" to encourage, incent, and measure trusted recommendations for conferences.

    i have this crazy hypothesis that the social web is opening a whole new way to get people to conferences. and it's going to be way more about getting a message from someone i trust than from some random dude from india.

    sorry about the monologue — you just hit on something i happen to have been thinking about recently :)

  3. John Wilker Post author

    LOL, Great minds!

    I couldn't agree more. Conferences just refuse to learn, even technology ones, which is emberassing.

    I saw a cool preso on slide share about influence, and you're right, it's about who trust, and who we know, not what lame ploy an organizer pulls, that simply wastes money, that could be spent making the event better.

    Events seem to rely more on "You came last time, you should come again" rather than actually making the event worth the money.

    Sad, but good for us :)

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