However, not all calling lists are the same.
Recently, phone carriers have started flagging numbers they think might be spam, which could prevent your agents from reaching targets. The way you formulate your calling lists could increase the chances of numbers being flagged.
Why Does a Good Calling List Matter?
A good calling list will increase answer rates and improve your business reputation. Here's what you should do to create the perfect calling list:
Make sure you don't include numbers on the Do Not Call Registry
The federal government's Do Not Call Registry tells marketers that some consumers don't want to receive telemarketing calls.
Once someone enters their details to this list, they can only be contacted by organizations such as nonprofits, political groups, survey collectors, and debt collectors. If you're not one of these groups, you need to abide by the rules of the Do Not Call Registry. Contacting consumers on the list with telemarketing information could result in your numbers being flagged, which could spell disaster for your business.
Calling someone on the Do Not Call Registry isn't just illegal, but it's seriously annoying. These consumers have expressed that they don't want to receive telemarketing communications, so reaching these people could jeopardize your business reputation.
Make sure your list is up-to-date
Phoning customers who have already requested to opt-out of calls from your organization is another bad idea. As data protection legislation becomes stricter, it just looks bad for business when you contact people who have already told you they don't want to hear from your company.
Make sure your calling lists are up-to-date to prevent this problem. Contact information can change over time, so confirm phone numbers on inbound calls from consumers and add new details to your computer systems.
Use data relevant to your products or services.
Purchasing call data from third parties can prove lucrative for your telemarketing campaigns. But you want to make sure that the data you receive is relevant to your products and services. Purchasing the data of millennials when your agents are trying to sell vacations to the over 50s, for example, is a pointless (and expensive) exercise.
The same goes for purchasing the data of renters when you are selling solar panels.
You also want to make sure you purchase call data from reputable companies who obtained their information legally. Buying the data of consumers who don't want to be contacted by telemarketers is just bad for business.
Create local lists for localized campaigns
You might want to create different calling lists for different campaigns. If you are planning on targeting consumers from a particular city or region, for example, create lists with the phone numbers of local residents.
Creating localized calling lists will boost answer and conversion rates and prevent your numbers from being flagged by annoyed customers.
"Focus on specific owner and property hyperlocal information criteria as well as the owner demographics to help ensure that your offer will resonate with them," says PropertyRadar. "Narrow down your lists to fit a specific script with an offer that is relevant to the person you are calling."
Think About Dialing Ethics
Some agents have sales targets to meet and bills to pay, and they often forget about the ethics behind telemarketing. It is your responsibility to train agents on the calling best practices so you don't get in trouble with the law and risk your business reputation.
Tips for outbound campaigns
Here are some of the things you need to think about before you plan your next telemarketing campaign:
- Use concise scripts when calling prospects. Taking too much of a consumer's time isn't the best idea and can result in your numbers being blocked. Agents should use concise cold calling scripts that promote your products and services without annoying potential customers.
- Treat prospects with empathy. Tell your agents to think about the person on the other end of the phone. Outbound calls are so much more than just a sales pitch — they are about creating a connection with a potential customer, too.
- Know who's on your calling lists. Agents should know a few basics about the person they are calling, even if they don't have lots of information on their lists. Referring to a recipient by their first name can create a rapport and increase sales.
- Offer a "back out" in your script if the lead is not interested. This is important. Agents should handle uninterested customers with respect and know the right things to say in this situation.
- Track interested leads. Agents should take notes of potential leads — high-value prospects, the best time to contact leads, the best point of contact, etc.
- Use a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System. A CRM will let you manage prospects, leads, and clients in one place and make it so much easier to track your campaigns.
- Focus on the customer experience. The customer experience is important when it comes to telemarketing. By the end of this year, customer experience will overtake price as the key brand differentiator.
Even if you have a large pool of prospects, your dialing ethics can cause you to lose leads over time. If your agents say the wrong things or use the wrong selling tactics, you could upset customers and increase the chances of having your numbers flagged.
Manage Your Business' Reputation
When you engage in a telemarketing campaign, you need to maintain your reputation. You should scan your numbers on a regular basis to make sure they aren't being flagged. If your agents are dialing consumers with a number that's showing up as "Spam Risk" or "Scam Likely," you're just wasting time.
Scanning your numbers on Caller ID Reputation lets you swap out bad numbers before you generate more flags.