An outbound campaign strategy is essential for business development efforts.
Initiated by call center agents to prospective customers on behalf of a client, outbound campaigns offer a human element often overlooked in today’s digital world. Though there are many ways an outbound strategy can support a business, often, the prime objective is to contact existing or prospective customers to generate and/or qualify leads, consummate sales, set appointments, initiate fundraising activities, renew services, and so forth. Depending on the need, the program can be oriented toward consumer or business audiences. Outbound calling campaigns offer strong ROI but are only as good as your development strategy. Here are four key components to outbound campaigns:
1. Develop a High-Quality Call List
Having a relevant call list is essential for the success of your campaign. A relevant list means a high-quality list—a pool of interested, if not willing, existing and potential customers for your products or services. There are options for sourcing a high-quality list, such as third-party list brokers, tradeshow attendees, organization members, etc.
Qualified leads for a call list are best sourced by leveraging what you already know to be true, namely, the profile of your existing customers. Analyze your current customer base for common features your highest-spending users share. For example, the types of industries they work in, job titles, size of the companies, age groups, and so on. Start with this data and expand as desired to include sectors or audiences you don’t currently sell to but wish to.
2. Understand the Importance of KPIs
Every outbound campaign must have strategic objectives, well-defined goals, and clearly-outlined KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). KPIs are the set of metrics used to analyze and track performance and progress toward achieving your goals and objectives. Not only do KPIs matter, but identifying the “key” metrics that matter most, tracking them, and reporting them, provides the best opportunity to manage the program and realize maximum ROI.
There are many types of KPIs to consider. Call analysis targets not just how many calls were made but what their result was. What is the contact rate? How long did successful calls last? What is the conversion rate? The most important metrics are the resulting sales or successful outcomes. These should be measured against a targeted objective—with an hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly time increment.
Another critical KPI is leads generated or appointments set. In addition, in the case of an appointment setting campaign, measure the number of appointments held and the conversion rate of sales to appointments.
In total, KPIs will help you accurately measure the success of your outbound campaign and provide insight into where improvements can be made along the way.
3. The Value of a Script
Developing an effective script for your campaign is critical, and you should go into the process of establishing one with an open mind and be willing to modify it based on feedback obtained during your calling efforts. A proper script offers more than just a consistent message from your agents; a good script offers guidance, keeps calls on track, answers questions not asked, builds credibility, and helps achieve program objectives. A good script is simple, clear, informative, engaging, and can be delivered naturally by agents.
Regarding the latter, agents should be well-trained and prepared to build interest and credibility, which is why scripting is vital to an outbound call strategy. Agents must be sincere, professional, know what they’re talking about, and be customer-oriented—careful not to project an insincere sales tone or offer robotic sales pitches. A quality script delivered by professional agents leaves positive impressions and contributes to good results in your campaign.
4. Prioritize Follow-up Calls
Follow-up calls, before and after a sale, are vital to the sales process and important to building and maintaining business relationships. A follow-up call can further promote your service or product, maintain a dialogue, and present an opportunity to build relationships that could lead to a sale, additional sales, or referrals that could lead to more potential clients.
A follow-up call, when executed properly, can be the best method to communicate with prospects at their convenience. If there is hesitancy when connecting with a prospect, you may have reached them at a bad time, so avoid rambling or launching into a sales pitch. Instead, ask for a good time to follow up so you can present what you have to offer. To keep the conversation going, set up a follow-up meeting. It’s a good first step to establishing a relationship. Studies have found that, in cases, 80% of sales require five follow-up calls. So make sure your program timeframe affords enough time for follow-up calls to be scheduled when it is convenient for your prospective customers.
Partner with the Experts at Telecom, Inc.
Many factors influence the success of an outbound campaign. Partnering with an experienced contact center helps you achieve goal-oriented results. At Telecom, Inc., we combine nearly 30 years of experience and best practices with the latest contact center technology and exceptional domestic staff to provide a strong ROI for our clients.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you achieve your goals on your next campaign.