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How to use outbound appointment setting to your sales advantage

James Dixon | 25 June 2021

As much as we'd love to have all our lead requirements produced from inbound enquiries, the reality is that most companies need to include an element of outbound methods to meet their lead generation targets. Appointment making falls snugly into this remit and is an important part of the sales process which should be given the time and energy needed to get it right. As with anything, there is a certain skill and technique to be perfected for setting high-quality appointments.

At GCL, we have been providing high-quality Outbound Appointment Setting for over 30 years and with a collective experience of over 150 years in the industry, we have developed a unique approach to Outbound Telemarketing that has made us one of the UK’s leading B2B Lead Generation companies.

We wanted to share our expertise in Outbound Appointment Setting to offer some tactics and strategies you can use to achieve your objectives, generate more sales, and grow your bottom line.

The Importance of Outbound Appointment Setting

In an increasingly competitive marketplace, there is a strong requirement to pro-actively seek business through Outbound Lead Generation. Appointment Setting can help support your sales activity either through ‘follow–up’ exercises with your existing customer base or through targeting new business leads through prospect campaigns. It can help you build an impressive sales pipeline – typically achieving 12 x pipeline value for every £1 invested.

The GCL Approach:

At GCL we understand that generating high-quality sales leads is a major business challenge, especially for organisations that don’t possess the instant brand recognition and market traction of their bigger competitors. For every campaign, we begin by understanding the sales proposition in fine detail, examining what the aim is and over what time scale. Once we have developed a comprehensive knowledge of how it fits into the overall business objectives, we can then design and execute a Demand Generation campaign that achieves a competitive advantage and makes a successful impact.

Building trust with your prospects

In the B2B environment, sales cycles tend to be longer because often the focus is on bigger ticket items. It is imperative that your sales proposition is developed so that it meets this challenge and addresses a problem the prospect may be facing. It is also crucial that your prospects can clearly see the benefits of your proposition and can realise clear, genuine ROI - this cannot be achieved by simply publishing information on your website! An appointment-based approach can get you in front of prospects when they're giving you their undivided attention.

The GCL Approach:

When developing the telemarketing approach we build trust with prospects, nurture the relationship with the decision-maker and make sure that they understand every aspect of the proposition, backed up with ‘follow-up’ activity that may include white papers or case studies that support the proposition.

Our approach at GCL is to provide real-world examples, information and credibility to prospects, helping to influence their decision. Through appropriate nurture and diary management, prospects are reached at the right time in their buying cycle to maximise conversion.

An Unscripted Approach to Outbound Appointment Setting

Conversations don't follow a script, and that's why we feel that having the opportunity to develop a free-flowing conversation with your prospect is important to secure the all-important meeting. The telemarketing agents knowledge and experience, together with an unscripted approach, enables them to converse confidently about the proposition and then position it so that it meets the needs of the target audience. This approach enables the delivery of highly qualified leads and appointments as the call has the flexibility to change focus to the prospects pain points, wherever those may fit into the proposition.

The GCL Approach:


Our unique unscripted approach lets our telemarketers get to the very heart of what your prospects and customers need. We have a team of highly trained telemarketers who are experts in getting through to senior decision-makers and engaging them in meaningful conversations about your sales proposition. Through intonation, tone, pitch and diary management, our team focuses on building rapport with everyone they speak with, then nurture that relationship through a strong focus on the prospect and resolving their problem, rather than a sales pitch. 


BANT Process

The BANT process offers salespeople a method of quickly and easily qualifying leads as sales-ready or not. Through a framework approach, it offers a method of gathering relevant information from leads and prospects to provide an indication as to whether further nurture is needed or if the leads are ready to be passed onto the sales team.

The GCL Approach:

As pioneers of the BANT process, GCL completely understands that any successful Outbound Appointment Setting activity hinges on having the skill to know when a sales lead is a genuine opportunity to buy. Before any sales lead is generated or an appointment is booked, our appointment makers go through a stringent BANT process to make sure it is completely qualified. Here's the process they go through:

  • BUDGET – Does the client have an appropriate spend level and is there a defined budget process?
  • AUTHORITY – Do they have the authority to make the buying decision?
  • NEED
    • Does the business have an appropriate requirement?
    • Is there a business challenge that needs addressing?
    • What are their key concerns about the proposition?
  • TIMESCALE – When will they need a solution?

Once the lead has gone through this stringent process of qualification only then is it booked as an appointment for the sales team. This way you can be confident that you are getting a genuine sales opportunity to deal with.

Maximising your ROI

Integral to any Outbound Appointment Setting activity is how well it is tracked and monitored. Ensuring that marketing spend is directed in specific, high return areas and tracked to the penny is very important.

The GCL Approach:

We are constantly tracking the quality of the leads that we deliver and the appointments that we book for our clients and formulating best practices. We place an emphasis on continuous feedback from our clients on the sales leads that we generate. This ensures that our approach is delivering on the objectives and allows us to rectify any problems as they arise. 

We consider the intelligence gathered from previous projects to influence future campaigns to improve ROI wherever possible. This is where GCL Direct stands out from a traditional call centre. Our tailored approach and ability to work complex campaigns and deliver results are why we have become the telemarketer of choice for many large organisations. 


To find out more about how Outbound Appointment Setting can be used in your strategy, download our guide "The B2B Appointment Setting Techniques Which Drive More Sales".

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