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5 ways to improve your outbound calling strategy

For many companies, outbound calls are the primary means of creating revenue and yet at times, the outbound strategy is overlooked or deemed unnecessary. A comprehensive outbound call strategy is a must have for every company regardless of the number of staff dedicated to outbound activity. In this article, we’ll break down what exactly an outbound call strategy is, as well as offer some tips for how to improve your company’s outbound call strategy.

What is an outbound call?

In the simplest sense, outbound calls are those placed by your staff to your customers. Outbound calls can be for a variety of reasons, ranging from sales and outreach efforts to calling back customers who requested information that your staff didn’t have on hand during the initial call. In some cases, outbound calls can be arranged as outbound campaigns which essentially is a large list of client numbers that need to be contacted.

Automating as much of the effort is key to saving time on every call, save you money and improve your bottom line.

Below we’ll detail several ways you can improve your outbound call strategy.

6 ways to improve your outbound calling strategy

#1 Specify your goals and KPIs

Conversion rate

Divide your total number of calls made by the number of successfully converted leads you have for a given period and you’ll get your conversion rate. It’s a simple metric, but one that gives a good general sense of how well your outbound calling strategy is working in ROI terms.

Average handle time

Another simple KPI, average handle time represents the average amount of time your agents spend on the phone with your prospects. As a general rule, you’ll want to keep this metric pretty low. After all, the shorter the average handle time the greater quantity of calls your agents will be able to make per shift. More calls equals more converted leads equals more profit for your company, simple as that.

Answer success rate

Also known as hit rate, this metric measures the percentage of numbers dialed that result in a successful connection between agents and prospects. It’s an especially important KPI to track when developing your outbound calling strategy, because it will inform your decision about which type of automatic dialer to use if you choose to use one. More on that later.

#2 Analyze your strategy

Analysis and evaluation are a crucial step of the outbound calling strategy development process. Once you’ve decided on a preliminary strategy, ask for feedback on it from your colleagues, both in management and on the call center floor. Be receptive to recommendations regardless of from whom they come. The goal here is to develop a sound, workable strategy — so be willing to make adjustments if necessary!

#3 Look to use a dialer

Managers know all too well that idle time do not generate revenue.. Those few minutes an agent spends between calls twiddling their thumbs, so to speak, add up, and can lead to a noticeable amount of lost revenue month-to-month.

A dialer integrated with your CRM cuts back idle time significantly. Here’s how it works:

  • The list or campaign is decided on. The list is imported into the dialer and is automatically distributed evenly to the staff that have been assigned to the campaign.

  • The campaign settings include some time (wrap time) for completing administrative tasks at the conclusion of a call.

  • The agent starts his or her shift. Once they hang up with a client, the timer starts. They complete their administrative tasks and instead of having to search through a list of client phone numbers, the next call on their list is automatically dialed. The wrap time can be over-ridden if the admin work is completed quicker or extended if required per call.

  • can lead to uncomfortable waiting periods for clients after they pick up the phone, so keep it in mind!

With a CRM integrated dialer is successful because it automates the tedious task of searching for their next number, your agents can save time, stay on task and complete more outbound calls per shift than you ever thought possible.

#4 Click to call

If, for whatever reason, you don’t want to use an automatic dialing system, the click to call feature will keep things moving quickly versus your staff dialing the numbers manually.

Any number in the CRM can be dialed by clicking on the number. A good CRM integration will also log all the call statistics (call time, duration etc) in the CRM, creating a history of all call activity to each client.

#5 Use region-specific numbers

Regardless of who you are or where you’re from, odds are you’re more likely to pick up the phone if you recognize the caller’s area code. People are skeptical of foreign phone numbers because one, there’s only a faint chance they’ll know the person on the other end of the line and two, depending on their carrier these kinds of incoming calls can incur heavy fees.

#6 Measure results and don’t be afraid to switch things up

As with many business strategies, flexibility is an essential aspect of successful outbound call strategies.

High hit rate not translating to a high conversion rate? Switch up your focus and try tracking different KPIs.

Every company is different and or even something that works well for one of your departments may not work as well for another, and vice versa. Don’t be afraid to collect feedback from your staff and clients at regular intervals and have the resolve to tweak things until you find what gets you the best results for your company.

The Bottom Line

We’ve outlined a number of tips and tricks for helping you improve your outbound calling strategy in this article, but the fact of the matter is none of it will matter unless you’ve got a solid foundation for success in place. Your strength is your staff, so finding new ways to improve their performance, finding news ways of making their job easier/less repetitive will bring benefits and bring with it an improvement in your revenues.

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