Although technological advances have dramatically changed the way we do business, outbound calling remains a go-to strategy for businesses of all sizes and industries from high-growth startups to Fortune 500 companies. Why? Because it works. But like any tactic, outbound calling only works when backed by a solid plan.
So what’s the best way to build an effective outbound calling campaign? Much depends on your strategic objectives – every plan is unique. But as a general rule, we’re sharing some tips that lay the foundation for any successful campaign.
First, here at Brickworks, we prefer to call outbound calling – outbound conversation. Although each dial starts as a call, the minute a real person is on the other end of the line, your call becomes a conversation. Framing each contact as a conversation reminds your callers that helpful, friendly conversation is their goal.
Next, start by gathering your data. Develop a list of prospects who would actually consider buying your product or using your service. Does it offer any value to the prospect? Does it meet any of their needs? There’s no point calling if you can’t fill a gap.
Now, consider the road blocks. You believe you’ve created a list of hot prospects, but what might be their potential objections? Prepare responses to these objections ahead of time so callers can keep the conversation alive.
And speaking of the conversation, should you use a script? Absolutely. A carefully planned conversation builds caller confidence, and when well-written, it allows for flexibility. Effective callers can make any script sound fluid and natural. And, since you’ve already anticipated potential objections, remind your callers that although they’re using a script as a framework for their conversation, they’re strongly encouraged to take extra time to address any barriers, and should never force a close just to stay on track.
And finally, plan for persistence. It’s not easy to get your prospects to the phone, never mind keep them on it. It could easily take several calls to get a decision maker on the line, so build time for persistence into your plan. Simply decide how persistent you’d like to be, then set your guidelines for repeat dial ups and leaving messages.
Set your benchmarks. We’ve blogged about measurement many times before. You’ll never know if your campaign is successful unless it’s properly measured. KPIs like handling time and conversion rates allow you to analyze your results and make improvements for even greater success down the road.