Magazine article Marketing

The Great Inbound Explosion

Magazine article Marketing

The Great Inbound Explosion

Article excerpt

A revolution in UK inbound telemarketing began in 1985 with the launch of British Telecom's LinkLine and Callstream services.

Ads bearing LinkLine 0800 (free) and 0345 (local rate) numbers were generating around 12 million calls a year by 1991, the majority on 0800 numbers.

Even so, the use of direct response numbers in the UK is still comparatively unsophisticated and the potential untapped, particularly on TV.

Less than 10% of UK TV ads carry a phone number, compared with 54% in the US, and they are often shown fleetingly, or at an unreadable size, and not mentioned in the voice over.

Callstream, BT's 0898 premium rate service, is dominated by recorded information services.

Sales promotion applications are increasing gradually, but 0898 numbers could be exploited more widely in telemarketing.

Mercury Communications also offers premium rate services (0839 and 0881) and will have launched an 0800 equivalent (0500) by the end of 1991.

An alternative to 0800 numbers is FreeFone, where callers are connected by the operator. It is not used widely by advertisers, even though it has the advantage of serving a branding function, publicising the product or company name. …

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