Appointment setting and lead generation are often confused for one another, but they each serve a different purpose.

In short, lead generation is the process of acquiring new customers by collecting information from potential prospects.

Appointment setting, on the other hand, aims at the end goal; converting these leads into appointments. It’s important to know the difference between a lead and an appointment so let’s dive into a bit more detail on what makes them so different…

What is Lead Generation?

Lead generation is the process of initiating interest in certain business products or services.

The methods employed in lead generation include digital content marketing, funnels, ads, SEO and other paid methods and marketing strategies.

Lead Generation Funnel

Leads are then handed over to appointment setters, who work with sales teams in conducting appointment setting campaigns that aim at converting leads.

Usually, a sales representative follows up on each lead evaluating and assessing potential prospects. From there the lead is converted into a business opportunity. The opportunity then travels throughout the sales pipeline until it becomes an official customer at the point of sale.

Sales Pipeline For Scheduled Appointments

Lead Generation is just the first step in the sales process.

The definition of a sales lead is a potential prospect who has expressed interest and/or desire for your product or service but isn’t ready to take action yet.

Leads vary in quality, from poor to excellent. Poor leads should be discarded while the best ones are passed on to appointment setters for further action and conversion into a sale.

What is Appointment Setting?

Appointment Setting refers to a strategy that aims to convert leads into appointment opportunities.

The appointment opportunity is the step before making a sale, where appointment setters will actually phone potential customers and qualify them.

Decision Maker For Appointment

Normally when a company is handed leads the sales representative will have to burn through poor quality leads and a lot of time can be wasted, but when an appointment setter has already qualified them this increases conversions and increases likelihood of success.

To ensure the success of a sales appointment, the people responsible for setting the appointment must have the right skills.

Great appointment setters will have the following skills:

  1. – A high level of empathy towards customers
  2. – Willingness to listen and understand what a potential prospect needs
  3. – Ability to ask the right questions
  4. – Expertise in your product or service


The Primary Differences Between Lead Generation and Appointment Setting

Leads and prospects are not synonymous.

A lead is a specific individual or business who has given over information voluntarily to learn more about the product or service in question entering into the ‘sales journey’.

Let’s define the primary differences by breaking down each method by the principal purpose, strategy, process and influence: the lead generation process involves piquing interest and gathering contact information and the appointment setting focuses on the result of appointment generation with qualified prospects.

The Goal

So, the purpose of appointment setting services is to qualify leads and turn them into booked appointments.

The key element of the appointment setting process involves qualifying the lead to ensure that it’s a good fit for your business and product or service offering.

Lead Qualifying

What is sometimes referred to as prospecting is an additional step. Once you have developed your list of new appointments it’s time to get them booked and pass them on to your sales team.

The Process

The lead generation procedure consists of targeting your target audience and capturing their contact details for the next stage of the process; lead qualification.

Lead generation can be done through digital marketing methods such as blogging, SEO and social networking platforms. The two marketing methods most successful are paid ads leading to landing pages.

Desired Outcome

The aim is to move the lead further through the sales funnel. The landing page will contain a lead capture form containing all the fields for the necessary details to capture.

When appointment setters make contact with a potential prospect, the process is called appointment setting. They must qualify their lead before they book an appointment otherwise a lot of time is at risk of being wasted.

Great appointment setters will use their internal resources to ask the prospect a series of questions that are designed to weed out the wrong people and identify those who have the authority and interest (desire) to buy. This appointment setting step is called qualifying the lead, where appointment setters determine whether a person qualifies as a prospect or not.

The Strategy Behind the Goal

Both marketing tactics try to reach out to prospective clients and create sales.

However, appointment scheduling strategies are more focused on the appointment setting process. Appointment setters will hopefully call the lead and try to get them interested in their product or service and dig a bit deeper; as mentioned before this is called lead qualification.

Sales Representative

Lead generation only focuses on reaching new clients and collecting their information.


Each method has its own influence on your target audience. By increasing lead flow in lead generation the pressure usually is placed on developing more leads to fill the sales pipeline.

New Prospects In Pipeline

The appointment setting process influences the sales process by qualifying the leads, moving the leads closer to the sale and getting closers on the phone with the decision-maker.

Which one do you think is most valuable? How valuable would it be to you to have professionals at both methods inside your company doing b2b appointment scheduling for you?


We have developed a b2b ‘Appointment on Demand System‘ that not only generates leads but will get you your fully qualified appointment with key decision-makers ready for your sales teams to close.

Our full-funnel system has been created to ensure our clients do not burn through low-quality leads, with an emphasis on the value of a qualified lead.

We aren’t your typical churn and burn lead generation company that generate leads that don’t convert but are only interested in quality and getting you the end result.

A qualified lead is more likely going to lead to a sale.

Rely on us to book your appointments and your sales team to close the sales…eliminate the need to rely on customer referrals.

Why Should I Hire An Appointment Setter?

There are several indicators that businesses need an appointment setting service.

One of the biggest indicators is your conversion rates

Conversion Rates

If this lead traffic does not convert your campaign then you need a marketing team to do that too. If your organisation doesn’t have resources and/or talent to grow prospects and create appointments it’s better to outsource these services than you would seek someone to hire and train you. You may lose opportunities when you try building your internal resource pool.

Does Appointment Setting Really Work?

Appointment setting is a broad term for a variety of services that are used to generate appointments with potential clients.

In a nutshell, appointment setting works by establishing an appointment between your sales team and qualified leads to close deals.

Our unique ‘Appointments on Demand’ machine is a proven system to enhance sales opportunities for companies. It works by keeping your focus on running your business and allowing our finely-tuned processes to always deliver quality sales potential for your closers…

We can plug potential opportunities into our systems and deliver high-quality appointments that close.

Appointment Setting Experts

We use a different contact strategy for each appointment setting campaign based on the desired description, vertical, company profile and more.

In your scope, we use research and data to increase efficiency. The differences between success and failure are sometimes in detail. Each prospect is checked and qualified based upon your parameters so that your team does not spin its wheels on low-value clients.

We schedule your appointments and put them on your sales departments’ calendar. We hope your team will learn from ours and learn from our experience in such a partnership.

How Can Appointment Setting Companies Help Sales?

MyLeadMachine optimises your sales strategy so that your business grows exponentially. An appointment setter will get in touch with the leading contacts to start making business decisions required to do business with your company.

Appointment setting is an appointment-driven marketing strategy that helps your company get more appointments with qualified leads which result in maximisation of sales.

What Do Appointment Setters Do?

Appointment makers use a process to reach out to potential clients and qualify them and evaluate the prospect’s qualifications moving them forward or weeding them out.

Relevant Questions For Weeding Out

Once they know the quality of their lead they can set up an appointment. This can include calling and email to arrange schedules and to remove gatekeepers.

Appointment setters don’t want to set up appointments with people who aren’t the last decision-makers or don’t qualify. However, they may still have to speak with several of these people in order to make a decision. It takes lead nurturing to help bring in those prospects ready to buy.

How Do I Get Quality Appointments?

Appointment setters are those who clean up leads and nurture them.

Guarantee quality appointments by engaging appointment setters. This way, the appointment setter will reach out to them and determine if they are ready to buy or not.

Maintain quality appointments by engaging appointment setters consistently. This service works to enhance your sales strategy so that your business grows exponentially over again.

Do setters actually work? Yes, they do and many clients have experienced the results.

The Benefit of Outsourcing Appointment Setting

Increasing percentages of industries move towards outsourcing. It assists them to concentrate on more critical responsibilities such as making the sales because it reduces spending a lot more time and money on their marketing and acquisition budget.

Final Result For Outsourcing

Qualified sales appointments are the most significant and critical element for a business. It helps to boost the sales appointment conversions as well as helping improve your ROI and reduce your CPA.

Improved Brand Image

Outsourcing appointment setting services will help your brand grow faster as you make more sales and have more success.

The more testimonials and reviews you build up the quicker your company’s reputation improves. It’s imperative to gain trust with your clients, and appointment setting services are the most important link in the chain of business. Lead generation is essential but it shouldn’t stop there if you want to grow your brand fast.

Allows You to Focus on Other Tasks

Outsourcing setting appointments to a professional digital marketing agency allows you to concentrate on other critical aspects of your organisation that require more attention.

Long Term Solution

A digital marketing company that takes care of the lead generation process and gets you booked appointments with key decision-makers is rare to find. When you do find one, you are going to find yourself with a whole lot more time on your hands and a happy sales team!

Increase Your Revenue

The smallest mistake in setting the appointment and you risk losing that prospective customer.

The use of an outsourced provider of schedule setting will assist a smooth scheduling process, as it’s what they are doing all day every day. This allows you to expand your company and generate additional revenue.

Lowers Your Cost Per Acquisition

Finally, It will help reduce sales costs by hiring a professional outsourcer to handle your appointments. If they give you quality leads and higher success rates then you don’t have to spend as much money trying so hard.

The appointment setting process is the foundation of your company’s success and outsourcing it can be a wise move.


I hope it’s clear for you how lead generation and appointment setting are two different stages in a marketing process and serve different purposes.

It is important to understand this differentiation before you hire a lead generation company to help you with your sales and find out that most of the leads (if not all of them) don’t convert resulting in you being out of pocket and your sales pipeline still empty!

Contact MyLeadMachine to find out more about our thorough appointment setting solutions and see how we can increase lead conversions and lower your cost per Acquisition, getting you appointments with quality buyers within your first few days of partnering with us!

Appointment Setting

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