Cristie Data discovers lockdown telemarketing brings up to 30x return on investment
In the absence of face-to-face events during Covid-19 lockdowns, data storage provider
Cristie Data joined forces with Think Pipeline to generate a fresh source of new leads – and
telemarketing is now a permanent part of the marketing mix.
Cristie Data relied on events such as IPExpo (now known as DTX) to generate sales pipeline with a good, measurable track record of return on investment. When Covid-19 lockdowns impacted the economy and events were off the menu, how could Cristie Data reach out to new prospects to drive the business forwards?
Cristie Data looked for a telemarketing agency partner that could source and reach out to target prospects, and deliver validated opportunities to the sales team. Having worked with other agencies on similar marketing projects in the past, including Think Pipeline, Cristie Data once again chose Think Pipeline to support its lead generation campaigns during the Covid 19 crisis.
Over six months, Think Pipeline generated confirmed sales opportunities valued at around £1 million in potential revenue, a 30x return on investment. In the process, Cristie Data has discovered how outbound telemarketing adds an extra dimension to its pipeline. Even as “in-person” events return, the company will retain Think Pipeline to discover new sales opportunities.
Cristie Data specialises in data storage, offering innovative solutions for businesses of all sizes and across all industry sectors. The company works with enterprise technology vendors to design, deliver, support, and manage storage infrastructure and cloud services, with reach across the UK.
To generate new business, Cristie Data regularly exhibited at industry events – typically three major shows each year – to recruit new sales prospects. The company targets commercial and public-sector organisations, aiming to speak with IT managers, IT directors, and those with direct operational data storage responsibilities. When Covid-19 lockdowns resulted in the cancellation of exhibitions, the Cristie Data team immediately recognised that its future sales pipeline was at risk.
Participating in events is a relatively expensive exercise, costing up to £30,000 for the exhibition space and stand, plus further costs for accommodation, travel, and branded merchandise. To balance the equation, the opportunities collected at trade shows were generally of good quality, and conversion rates were high.
In the past, the company had also worked with resellers and technology vendors using MDF Isa Pandor, Digital Marketing Executive at Cristie Data, explains, “Of course, exhibition organisers are responsible for attracting visitors, and as a result our in-house prospecting lists were relatively limited, and were in danger of being over-used. One of our first issues was finding an agency partner that could bring its own data to the table to help us expand our market reach. The next challenge was locating a partner that understood the enterprise technology marketplace, to reduce the training load and to ensure proper engagement with prospects. And finally, we wanted to be certain that telemarketing would be money well-spent.”
Selecting Think Pipeline.
Several years prior, Cristie Data had worked with Think Pipeline. To help it make the best current agency selection based on capabilities and performance, the Cristie Data team spoke with its technology partners and found that Think Pipeline came highly recommended.
“Our aim was to find new opportunities with a clear revenue goal,” says Isa Pandor. “With an offer of Market Development Funds available from HPE for its HCI 2.0 hyperconverged infrastructure solutions, we planned our first campaign with HPE Market Development Funds, and turned to Think Pipeline.
“Think Pipeline met our key criteria, particularly the ability to utilise its own very large, comprehensive, database. Thanks to Think Pipeline’s experience in B2B enterprise technology sales, plus its experience working with HPE, the training requirement was close to zero for the HCI 2.0 solutions. In addition, the majority of their agents have experience of working in the technology business.”
“At the start of discussions, Think Pipeline agreed a minimum number of appointments it would generate, and demonstrated complete confidence in its ability to deliver successful outcomes, using the BANT methodology.”
Cristie Data started its first campaign in May 2021, funded by HPE to promote the HCI 2.0 solution.
Isa Pandor reports, “The initial campaign produced some great leads, one in particular stands out with a potential £500,000 in revenue. Based on the great success of this pilot campaign, we applied to HPE for two further rounds of funds, and Think Pipeline completed campaigns that have generated in the region of £1 million in opportunities for a total of £32,500 invested, a 30-fold return on investment.” Not only has the telemarketing campaign delivered excellent revenue pipeline for Cristie Data, but it has also brought a new dimension to the sales mix.
“Though we have started attending events again, retaining Think Pipeline is a powerful addition to our lead-generating activities. In the past using only events and our vendors’ lead services, we found that we had peaks and troughs in our lead pipeline; some months we had too many leads to handle while at other times there was a lack of new leads,” says Isa Pandor. “With Think Pipeline, we gain greater
control of the flow, with our sales teams and Think Pipeline working in tandem far more effectively.”
Isa Pandor is now also working with Think Pipeline on campaigns, funded internally, to continue to develop a consistent flow of sales opportunities moving forwards.
“Think Pipeline is completely open and honest in its approach to fulfilling our needs, offering very experienced and invaluable direction on what’s possible, and helping us to establish a clear view on what are likely to be achievable targets,” explains Isa Pandor. “We very much appreciate Think Pipeline’s consultative style of approach, and positive proposals about how to achieve our objectives.”
Isa Pandor concludes, “It’s refreshing that Think Pipeline takes a long-term approach, looking to establish a sustainable relationship and always seeking to find out how they can help us. For example, Think Pipeline keeps in regular contact with our team, following up on how the opportunities are progressing, and providing great insight into how they can help going forwards. Think Pipeline’s business model, based on whether the meeting takes place, shows that it is fully committed to discovering the right opportunities, which I think is unusual in this space, and hugely beneficial for Cristie Data.”
About Think Pipeline
Think Pipeline specialises in B2B lead and demand-generation services for the IT sector, covering the UK, Europe, USA, and Canada. Think Pipeline finds genuine, highly qualified sales opportunities to grow your business, building your new business sales pipeline, expanding your presence inside your existing customer base, developing your channel relationships, and more.
Many of Think Pipeline’s lead generation specialists are multi-lingual conversationalists with business experience, able to talk to your prospects and customers to understand their pain points, deliver your proposition, and uncover opportunities. The result is high-value, fully qualified leads, that generate real business.
For more information, contact Think Pipeline
or visit www.thinkpipeline.com
About Cristie Data
Cristie Data is an independent data storage infrastructure specialist, working with leading vendors such as HPE, DellEMC, arcserve, Nutanix, Barracuda and more. Part of the iomart group of companies, Cristie Data is headquartered in Stroud, Gloucestershire, and is dedicated to helping customers save time, reduce costs, and improve data storage capabilities.
For more information, contact Cristie Data
or visit www.cristie.co.uk