In telemarketing terms, lead gen and appointment setting are often interchangeable. While the process might be very similar the fundamental difference is your desired outcome. Either an indication of interest which your sales team will then nurture or a fully qualified appointment with an agreed time and date for either a face to face appointment, telephone appointment, web demo etc.

We tend not to differentiate but treat each prospect as a potential new customer but understand that it’s not always the right time. The question is: 

Is there any point sending you or one of your sales team to see a prospect at the wrong point in the customer journey?

I guess the answer to that depends on your product service buying cycle.

Clearly travelling around the country to meet with someone that is 3 months into a 5 year contract for your service, or has no budget, no specific interest but has acquiesced to meet is not a good use of your time and will subsequently reflect badly on us. However, it might be the case that you have an innovative standout product which when demonstrated will sell itself. You might be such an accomplished sales person that you are able to convert the merest whiff of an opportunity, maybe your products and services are priced so competitively that the decision to buy is a no brainer. More often than not however we need to be respectful of the customer journey, understand where each prospects fall along the journey and tailor our message accordingly.

We are often asked, “what’s the difference between telesales and telemarketing?”

A polite answer is, it depends who you ask. My answer is “Who cares” it’s just jargon that’s only important in the telesales/telemarketing industry. I suppose a more balanced answer would be what has prompted your questions. If the reason for the question is because you are unsure whether to embark on a telemarketing campaign or a telesales campaign then let’s explore what your business objective are.