Last week I popped in for a visit with Amanda Puppo of MarketReach, Inc. Amanda and I met via the New Jersey Association of Women Business Owners (NJAWBO). We were in a mastermind group together, and I admired how Amanda offered sage advice to help fellow entrepreneurs overcome everyday business challenges.
About the Business
MarketReach offers outbound telephone marketing including lead generation and appointment setting, customer satisfaction surveys, database clean-up, customer reactivation, and introductory call training. In March, they celebrated 13 years in business.
The work they do is commonly thought of as telemarketing, however what sets MarketReach apart is that the staff members are articulate, educated, consultative, and they create meaningful dialogues with their clients’ prospects. They also specialize in business-to-business (B2B) lead generation and typically do not call customers at home.
Employees working in the MarketReach office in Lawrenceville, NJ include an eclectic mix of personalities ages 22 to 62. Amanda explained “Sales is nothing more than a conversation between two people in which likability and trust is what leads to the appointment. We hire people based on their personality, attitude and communication skills more so than past sales experience. “
MarketReach has an extremely robust sales training program. Incentives are in place that reward employees when they schedule appointments for clients and when the appointments they set generate sales. This helps to ensure high quality leads for clients who think of MarketReach as an extension of their sales team. More than once during our hour-long visit, I saw employees poke their heads into Amanda’s office to celebrate new leads they had just secured.
I asked Amanda what she likes most about her business. She answered, “At MarketReach, we are helping small business owners grow. I’m very inspired about that. I enjoy the work, training people, and building people up as well. My favorite thing is hiring new people who are green in the area of marketing and sales and watching them grow in the skills needed.”
Using Technology to Grow Her Business
“I hate technology!” Amanda admitted, which I thought was cool because she probably hears from her customers a lot, “I hate cold calling.” Most people don’t like to do it and that is where her company can make a big impact. I appreciate Amanda’s honesty and her approach that allows team members from MarketReach and Technical Adventures to work together to find the best solutions.
With the help of Kendra Von Achen (a fellow NJAWBO member) of DB Pros, MarketReach was able to customize an Intuit application called QuickBase to use as their contact management system as well as to track time and billing. Clients can log in to see their own data in real time, including the pipeline of upcoming potential appointments (call backs), list of all appointments to date, updated names of decision-makers, and the record of each conversation that took place. Clients see everything that the caller/telemarketer sees. Clients like the value this brings; they have complete transparency and direct communication with their telemarketers. They can even write notes for callers to see. This reduces the time Amanda and her team spend going over accounts with clients and leads to more satisfied customers.
This week’s project is to roll out Technical Adventures’ VirtuIT Cloud Services with Microsoft Office 365. This will help in maximizing internal communication and collaboration. The suite includes Microsoft Exchange Online for email and calendaring; Microsoft SharePoint Online for portals and document sharing; Microsoft Lync for presence availability, instant messaging, and peer-to-peer audio calls and video conferencing.
Technical advisor Danny Soares says, “By moving toward a software-as-a-service (SAAS) model all applications within the suite will continue to be upgraded at no additional cost ensuring that all team members are always working on the most current version. For roughly the same amount of money they were already spending, they now have many more value added features, greater peace of mind, less downtime, fewer disruptions, always up-to-date technologies backed by a 99.9% uptime guarantee, and predictable pricing — one monthly fee covers everything.”
Amanda said, “We are also excited about a work at home option for managers that need to access our data from anywhere which will be extremely useful for work/life balance and life interruptions like snow storms or sick kids.”
I enjoyed my visit with Amanda, and I admire how she is growing MarketReach by helping small business owners grow.
Learn more about MarketReach at www.MarketReach.biz or call 609-448-6364.
~ Kathy Miller
Have comments or questions? Contact us.