Are your outbound calls not making enough sales? You may need to rethink your strategies and implement new ones. Here are 11 tips to improve your outbound calling strategy and generate more leads.
11 Proven Tips to Improve Your Outbound Calls Strategy
Outbound calls are outgoing calls made from a company to its customers, vendors, and business partners. During outbound calls, agents or representatives call a list of promising leads or prospects and encourage them to make a purchase or sign up for a service.
Some common reasons for outbound calling are:
- To increase brand awareness and visibility
- Proactive approaches such as checking in with customers, setting upcoming appointments, following up on recent purchases or abandoned carts, etc.
- Offering customer success services where you and customers or clients together work towards a goal
- Verify or activate accounts
- Send out reminders for upcoming payments or renewals
- Collect feedback or conduct market research, to name a few
Outbound calls are sometimes known as cold calls, which are frequently used for sales, telemarketing, customer success, and more. However, cold calling is difficult because most customers are not prepared for your pitch.
So what can you do to grab their attention more effectively? Here are 11 useful tips to improve your outbound calling strategy.
1. Set Realistic Goals: Identify KPIs
First, it is important to set reasonable goals and share these with your teams. These goals and milestones can be modified as your business grows and new factors come into play. Make sure everyone understands what the goals are and how to achieve them. For example, are outbound calls meant to survey prospects or make a sale? How many sales should be made per month or per quarter? And so on.
Additionally, you want to identify relevant key performance indicators (KPIs) so you can measure employee performance. Common KPIs associated with outbound and sales calls are:
- Average Handle Time: Length of calls in relation to the total number of calls. Longer handling times may indicate difficulty in closing, poor persuasion skills, or insufficient product knowledge.
- First Call Resolution: Number of calls resolved on the first call in relation to the total number of calls. High first call resolution indicates that agents are doing well and are able to sell effectively without wasting time.
- Conversion Rate: Number of sales in relation to the total number of calls. A low conversion rate means that not enough sales are being made and the outbound calling strategy needs more work.
- Occupancy Rate: Time agents are spending on calls in relation to the amount of unavailable time spent. A low rate for an agent or rep means that they are struggling with post-call work.
2. Create the Ideal Call List
This goes without saying but if you are not targeting the right audience and demographic for your business, you won’t make great sales. Therefore, creating the perfect list can impact how well your business performs. Conduct market research and allow collaboration between marketing and sales teams so that together they can work on ideal buyer personas for your product. Then, develop a promising list that agents can pursue and generate more sales with.
3. Get an Outbound Calling Service
Consider getting a business VoIP service to support your local and international outbound calls. With a web dialer, your call center agent can quickly place calls from a computer and log important call notes.
Additionally, they can contact long-distance clients and display local area codes instead of international ones. Individuals are more likely to answer recognizable or local numbers instead of random, unknown ones.
4. Train Your Phone Sales Reps
Part of ensuring your phone sales reps are doing their jobs well is training them to do them correctly. Train and re-train agents to highlight and refresh best practices that they should imitate. Sit in on calls or record calls and review them to offer advice on proper and ineffective strategies. Refer to experts and webinars for more useful and modern sales development training tactics that outbound call center agents can use.
5. Collaborate with Marketing
Your marketing team has a good idea of how to sell to audiences. And your sales team knows who this audience is. Putting these two teams together can help you gain a bigger picture of your target audience and how to appeal to them.
6. Pay Attention to Your Prospect
Most agents dominate the call trying hard to make their pitch and sale. However, in order to gain their attention, you need to engage the prospect. Listen to them, pay attention to their needs, concerns, and issues. And adapt your pitch to make it flexible, allowing you to customize its relevance. This is much more useful as opposed to a stock script. Make them feel valued as individuals and not merely as another conquest in your sales job.
7. Study. Analyze. Optimize
Next, study your processes, responses, and agent performance. Use the KPIs and other metrics to track how your call center or business is performing. Analyze call tracking metrics to boost inside sales revenue.
8. Identify the Best Calling Times
Another factor worth paying attention to is the best time of day to call prospects. Most experts suggest that Wednesday and Thursday are the best days to call prospects. This is because they are not preoccupied with the upcoming week or getting ready for the weekend. Additionally, calling between 11 am and 1 pm or 4 pm and 5 pm is preferable instead of early morning or during the pre- or post-work commute.
9. Consider Outbound Calling Tools
As mentioned before, consider outbound calling tools such as a call center dialer, CRM, and customizable caller ID to boost your success rate. These tools make it easy and even automate processes to a certain degree which can make placing calls and closing deals faster.
10. Simplify the Process
Make it easy for prospects to understand your brand and product, find more information, and make the purchase. Only offer information that is necessary and relevant. Overstatement and technical jargon can put customers off.
11. Record and Review Interactions
It can be very helpful to see how your employees are interacting with customers. Use a call recording software to review calls and pay attention to customer preferences, behaviors, and more. This will give you insights into what aspects of your product or service are most and least successful. Based on that information, you can create better products and services and improve customer care.