Is telemarketing an effective sales technique for SaaS?


Has anyone here had success driving sales for their SaaS startup using telemarketing, or is it usually just a waste of money and a way to annoy potential customers?

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asked Feb 10 '11 at 11:55
Jon Kragh
185 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll

5 Answers


It depends on the service, and of course what you mean by "telemarketing"?

Telemarketing generally referrs to hiring non-sales professionals on an hourly basis at a low hourly wage to auto-dial and read scripts. When you hire a competent sales professional (and pay accordingly), it's generally called "inside sales" and works quite differently. It's a quantity vs. quality thing: telemarkerters can make dozens of calls an hour (and close a small percent), where as a sales pro may only make a dozen a day (but close many more).

Telemarketing works great for impulse, transactional sales: magazines, etc. The more product knowledge and deviation from the script is needed, the less effective it becomes.

Inside sales works great for large sales (several $K and up) with large commissions (10% and up), but smaller the sale and the smaller the commission, the less effective it becomes (a good sales pro will not get excited over $100 in commission).

If you're inbetween... then you should look at hiring hire a competiting marketing agency/professional. See this answer for more details on how to seek look for help like this. Or you could work towards become a marketing guru yourself.... which obviously means a lot of learning curves to climb and time lost doing so.

answered Feb 11 '11 at 06:10
Alex Papadimoulis
5,901 points
  • Great post! Are there any places that I can find stats on the quantity/telemarketing option? Any personal experiences here? – Jon Kragh 13 years ago
  • @Jon Kragh - it will always be a case by case; your experience will be unique b/c your product is unique, and different vendors will handle it differently. You just have to keep trying until you find one that works – Alex Papadimoulis 13 years ago
  • Just one point that I somehow missed until recently - with a SaaS startup you're generally looking at monthly plan so your sales price is the LTV of a customer. You know that already right? – Ryan 12 years ago
  • If your online sales channels does not generate enough revenue, you will pick up the phone your self :) And yes it works, but you should call only those customers that need big packages with minimum few $K. – Mojsilo 11 years ago
  • @AlexPapadimoulis what are your thoughts on telemarketing and or inside sales for SaaS companies with free trials where the pitch is to get them to signup for the free trial? kala xristougenna – Anagio 11 years ago


It's best to start by looking for spots online where your niche customers spend their time and advertise there. I can't say without knowing about what kind of SaaS you are selling, but I would assume you know your clients.

Telemarketing may still work for some services, but technology specific services tells me you should focus your advertising online. You can do a lot with online newsletters for very little money with ConstantContact.

answered Feb 10 '11 at 12:09
Justin C
838 points


Thanks for opening this topic. Telemarketing is an effective direct response vehicle for all industries, including IT and software. But then again, it should be done properly by the right people who have the right skills in sales and marketing. If you want to generate sales leads for your company, you must have the know-how and enough manpower in teleprospecting.


answered Oct 21 '11 at 09:44
Juliet Addison
11 points


I would suggest looking into how Hubspot operate (ullo Darmesh - chime in here eh?)

Once you've signed up for a trial they have an 'advisor' talk you through the trial along with lots of prepared goodies like action plans, ideas books etc to get you onto a running start. (Part of the problem with their model is that it isn't an instant payback so you need more of a leg up)

From the other end of the process (though I didn't signup in the end) it came across as genuinely useful and a way to help us rather than a PITA sales call.

On the other end of the spectrum anyone cold-sales telemarketing will never get more than 15 seconds from me.

This slide-desk is pretty useful (not hubspot AFAIK) and you will likely find lots of great info on

answered Oct 22 '11 at 03:21
1,365 points


The mission Ready Virtual Center of CSCBeyond where our motto is Affordable Excellence. Our mission is to help you reach your target audience and expand your market base by offering you superior service at the lowest rates in the market.

Telemarketing: We offer the best agents that are well experienced in the field of marketing and will provide the best results for any telemarketing campaign.

We provide all types of Appointment Setting for both Business and Consumer prospects. We have the biggest country database that is 99% accurate to contact.

Customer service: We have 24-Hour stand-by agents that are always ready to assist any customer needs.

We have a large center that can provide all types of chat and ticketing system to help track your consumer needs.

answered May 29 '15 at 17:06
Nancy Ncit
1 point

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