Sales and Telemarketing, Combat and Propaganda

Pardon the crazed title but logically speaking, there’s really a parallel between the two halves of the B2B sales process and the two halves often featured prominently during wartime: combat and propaganda. Salespeople are more likely classified as combatants seeing as they’re the ones on the front lines, asking prospects direct questions and getting involved at the heart of prospect problems. Lead generators use tools like telemarketing more along the lines of swaying and shaping minds, much like the propaganda at the time.


It’s common knowledge that propaganda was heavily used by both sides during WWII. And like telemarketing, its effects were more psychological than physical. On the other hand, many veterans would like to tell you the ‘hard truth’ that the bullets and blood counted more than what was being broadcasted at home. Doesn’t that sound similar to sales reps saying marketers have no real, personal understanding of the prospect outside of the former’s demand generation activities?


The truth is though that the Allies took the best use of both halves in order to win. Likewise, both the ‘combat’ of sales and the sway of telemarketing need to work just as in tandem:


  • Not everyone’s cut for the sales cloth – Just as not everyone’s cut to be a soldier, you can’t all be salespeople. Telemarketing services exist to support them just as propaganda was used to garner support from non-military citizens.


  • Yes, there is an emotional side to swaying customers – Attributes like lead quality and conversion rate are more favorable simply because conversations are more polite in tone. And while sales reps can be just as professional, polite telemarketing calls make for good set-ups.


  • The process is a self-sustaining cycle – Morale during war time is critical because it gave soldiers a reason to fight and when they fought well, they gained more morale. It’s a cycle. And like any cycle, it should be self-sustaining. Telemarketing loses its value when there are no sales reps to ask the harder questions while the same reps can suffer without good marketing to polish their image.


War isn’t the only thing that has people seeing only one side or one aspect of it. In business, it’s going to take success from all areas in order for a company to thrive. It needs soldiers to fight and propagandists to inspire reasons to keep fighting.

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