B2B marketing is still a challenging aspect for most enterprises, and they fail to keep up with the intricacies of the moving trends and changing prospect behavior. As compared to B2C marketing, it requires much more vision and implementation. Also, the lead-to-opportunity conversion rate of appointment setting is 82.5%.
That is one reason, enterprises either choose for appointment setting or lead generation. There appears this one question of appointment setting vs lead generation while choosing the services.
Appointment setting services depend on lead generation but it is not the same for lead generation. An enterprise can generate maximum leads without appointment setting but you can’t have an appointment setting without lead generation. So the fundamentals of both services depend on generating leads.
Is there any fundamental difference between the two or their meaning, what are the benefits of opting for any one of them? This article will answer all questions surrounding appointment setting vs lead generation.
What is Appointment Setting?
Appointment setting is the strategy that aims to onboard new prospects through scheduled appointments. In theory, it seems simple but it is a complex process.
The sales team has to get in touch with the established leads in an appointment setting. Once the sales representative is able to contact a prospect, they are responsible for qualifying them as a future client who will make a definite decision about getting your product or service.
They then make an appointment with the prospective client to consider the product or service. So now it is upon the sales representative of the business to ensure that he takes the prospect through the sales journey and closes the deal.
Here are some factors while considering appointment setting services:
- Identify and set appointments with key decision-makers
- Keep your script adjustable and ask only the most relevant questions
- Practice active listening skills and focus on your primary goal
- Understand and highlight their pain points and how your product or service can take away all those issues
- Always stay open to feedback for client satisfaction and mistake avoidance
What is Lead Generation?
Lead generation as the name suggests is an approach by which an enterprise gets leads to start its sales process and stimulate their interest in a product or service. It can be done in many ways including advertising, digital content marketing, telemarketing, and even customer referrals.
There are multiple reasons why an enterprise employs B2B lead generation services. The most common one is to seek out leads for particular activities that may end in a sales conversion. Lead generation is the first step in the sales journey. Each lead is qualified by the sales team to find out who can really become their client. They review and qualify their potential for better conversion.
Lead qualification becomes pivotal as it segregates your target audience from the huge crowd and helps you work on it smoothly. This strategic evaluation makes sure that only the leads with the highest conversion potential are pursued further, optimizing the sales team’s efforts and resource allocation.
Lead generation excels when a campaign is looking to capture a piece of factual intelligence that could never be modeled or predicted through profiling and sophisticated propensity algorithms.
— Chris Cunningham, ClickUp
Fundamentals of Appointment Setting Vs Lead Generation
When enterprises understand the difference between appointment setting and lead generation, they know what to opt for in the shorter and longer runs. So let us see the appointment setting vs lead generation comparison:
The Goal or Target
The main goal of lead generation and appointment setting is completely different from each other. Lead generation aims to attract an audience to the business that may take an interest in your product or service and may become your future client. So the goal here is to identify who signs up for the webinar or demo, fills out a form, or subscribes to the newsletter.
Appointment setting on the other hand has the goal of selecting prospects from the list of leads. This process is also known as prospecting. Once you have created a list of prospects, it becomes ideal to start booking appointments. So the goals in appointment setting vs lead generation are unlike but crucial.
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Both the methods attempt to build strong connections with the prospects or potential clients, but the approach to achieve it varies. A lead generation strategy works on engaging the leads and taking them closer to the final sale. However, the appointment setting strategy works on scheduling sales appointments with qualified leads.
Lead generation also focuses on gathering lead information and passing it to the sales and marketing department to decide what they want to do with it. The appointment setting focuses on generating leads with businesses that meet the company’s qualifications.
The lead generation process revolves around creating, distributing, and advertising content to your target audience to gather their contact details. So making a strategy that ensures you maximum lead which will grow the sales pipeline is vital. The lead generation process requires effort and is open-minded.
This is not the case with appointment setting, there is little to no gray area and the results are straightforward. Your sales team makes an appointment with the prospect, then attends the scheduled call, and a final purchase decision is made. So it is smooth, convenient, and you see quick results.
Both lead generation and appointment setting have a huge impact on your target audience. In lead generation, the entire focus is directed toward getting leads which creates a bigger sales pipeline to work with, engage more prospects, or close a few more deals.
Conversely, appointment setting is a long-term prospect that creates an influence over time. It influences the connection you created in a period of time that became your leads in the sales pipeline. Therefore, both work effectively to provide different solutions but lead generation works well in the short term and appointment setting works well in the long term.
When to Implement These Services?
Most times people consider lead generation and appointment setting the same. However, it is crucial to understand when to utilize lead generation and when to utilize appointment setting.
When to Use Lead Generation?
Lead generation is essential for the sales aspect of any enterprise whether small or medium. If your company is in the awareness stage and wants to gather enough sales intel about your ideal clients then it is crucial to opt for lead generation services. An optimum strategy will bring in more leads and you will be able to convert them.
When to Use Appointment Setting?
Enterprises can implement appointment setting when they want to optimize leads, have better pitches, and boost the sales process. But appointment setting fails when the prices you are getting on the offers don’t cover the costs of resources. For B2B companies, appointment setting services can build credibility in a shorter time period.
For any enterprise, it is lucrative to implement appointment setting and lead generation. However, it is also fundamental to understand what strategy will work best for your industry, location, and company size.
1. Is appointment setting cold calling?
Appointment setting is not just cold calling. Appointment setters usually get in touch with key decision-makers to qualify the leads and they generally do it by cold calling. While conducting the appointment, the sales rep will present an in-depth sales pitch to the prospective client and focus on finalizing the deal.
2. How quickly can I expect to see results from lead generation services?
Different businesses and industries have different timelines to witness the expected results in lead generation. It can take from 7 months to 2 years to get the exact results. Roughly you will be running the campaigns from 6 to 12 months before judging the overall results. However, the second you add a call-to-action and a form, you will see the leads flowing.
3. What is the difference between an appointment and a meeting?
An appointment is an event that is set at a future date and time and involves a salesperson and a prospective client. The meeting is similar to appointment but involves other persons, and a place is set where people are invited to attend the meeting. Meetings generally happen between multiple people.
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