Date: September 2018
The Point Company have just turned 10 years old, so I thought I’d seize on this chance to reflect on what’s changed in our company’s lifetime, where we are now, and where we’re going in the future. In doing so, it’s become clear to me that a decade is certainly a long time both in general terms and in the fast-paced world of IT telemarketing!
Way back in 2008…
… England didn’t qualify at all for Euro 2008, compared to this year’s glorious and unexpected run to the semi-final. The intervening years have also seen a whole raft of other changes from our favourite chocolate bars getting smaller (bad), computers and mobile devices getting progressively lighter (good), and cloud computing taking full flight (reader discretion…).
That same year England were watching the Euros from the sidelines, I founded Meeting Point from my garden shed. The mission was to provide a different kind of IT telemarketing to our clients. We wanted to move away from the “industry standards” of agencies of that time that consisted mostly of a smash and grab mentality, cracking through call sheets, coercing people into attending demos and meetings they had no real desire to, and providing their customers with an end product of dubious and mostly worthless leads. I felt that the simple formula of relationship-based calling and effective social marketing was the way forward.
As the business grew, the likes of Palo Alto and Outpost24 saw value in this fresh approach to lead generation, and that combined with their emerging technologies of the time meant that it was a match made in heaven (a.k.a. my garden shed…). One result of this more patient and personable approach to lead generation was to lay the foundation for shifting the vendor’s revenue models away from tin-shifting and towards recurring license-based software contracts. Looking back, I feel that it was around this time that the industry truly began moving into the digital revolution as we now know it.
Shed loads of progress…
Having taken the difficult but increasingly necessary decision to relocate from the shed, we’re now based in Kingston upon Thames with a call centre of 35 staff and counting. Over the years we’ve heard some classic stories from our clients about bailiffs, dodgy Chinese takeaways, cats with nine lives, and bad haircuts all making it “impossible” for telesales people to come in to work, and going a long way to explaining their decisions to outsource their telemarketing and lead generation functions!
We’ve also changed our name from Meeting Point to The Point Company in 2016 to better reflect the extended business development services we can now offer our customers.
Our core business is still quality lead generation, which we deliver on a funded head basis to enable our team to learn customers’ products and services inside out and build great working relationships. Alongside this we also offer supporting business development services including marketing, digital and data analysis through our tech-savvy and driven teams.
The crystal ball…
We’re always thinking ahead. Our vision for the next 10 years is to build on our achievements so far, keep our customers’ growth at the forefront of everything we do, and fine-tune our end-to-end portfolio of services to continue to deliver the very best results.
We’ll do this by continuing our investments in talented individuals, extract more and more value for our customers through big data analytics, stay ahead of the game with social selling, and let automation and artificial intelligence do their thing to enable our team as effectively as possible.
Alongside this, we will also stay true to the roots that were planted back in the shed – while social selling, digital marketing and data-driven analytics are becoming more and more mainstream, we believe that they remain complimentary activities to the core of what we do – that is picking up the phone and working hard on building personal relationships with people.
From the shed to the beach…
One thing that’s stayed consistent during our 10 years is that managing staff is such a big headache for our clients – it was then, it is now and no matter what else changes around it probably always will be! And although sales people get singled out it’s not always them – in truth it can be all departments. But outsourcing can solve that problem, and reduce overheads such as sick pay, pensions, holiday pay, admin costs, NI, healthcare, maternity/paternity pay – with outsourcing you just get the jobs you need done for a fixed price, and then you can relax on the beach (okay well maybe not literally, but you get the point!).
Follow us on social media to find out more of the hilarious excuses our clients have had for people not showing up for work – there are some corkers!