In his article on telemarketing, “Call or Nothing” (MW October 27), Simon Rines quotes Channel 4’s business development manager, David Stubley: “The kind of people using DRTV do not want automated response systems.” There is no evidence recorded for this statement and Rines allows the assertion to go unchallenged.
Yet there is a welter of case study evidence to the contrary. Many blue chip companies use automated systems for DRTV campaigns. Broadsystem handles Spillers’ Purrfect, Britvic’s Tango, Eurotunnel and Brooke Bond Choicest Blend to name but a few current campaigns, and we are not alone. These companies choose automated systems because they suit their purpose and their budget.
Rines does seem to understand this, since he concludes his piece by rebutting the lack of capacity argument, developed over several pages: “The big danger is not the high rate of lost calls. It is more that clients and agencies have decided to run campaigns without properly thinking through all the elements.”
Automated systems have a very important place in the telemarketing mix. Often they are the first choice route. At other times they serve as vital back-up/overflow for live operator services. By dismissing them out-of-hand, Stubley (and Rines) are holding back the rate of growth in DRTV. They should encourage advertisers to look at all the options and use them wisely. Then we’ll all benefit.
Sales & promotions manager